Are you trying to figure out how to shorten your best run time without having to add extra miles to the length of your runs? It is possible but it takes the right techniques and some great tips to get you there.
Use the following to help you to get your time down in a meaningful way. You’ll shave minutes off your total while still running the same distance:
Boost your running efficiency – the majority of runners all fall into the same category of over-striding, which causes them to land hard on their heels when they make contact with the ground. Instead of stretching your stride to its maximum level, try to slightly shorten your stride. The goal is to have your heel strike the ground more lightly below the level of your hips. The result will be to shorten the length of time that your foot is actually in contact with the ground. It will make you feel lighter and springier and will give the experience greater smoothness for improved speed.
Increase the rate of your stride – Time your strides to see how many times you step in a minute. A good runner will usually take ninety steps within thirty seconds, or 180 steps in a minute. Since you’ll be shortening your stride if you are following the first tip, you will need to make up for this by taking more rapid strides.
Improve your weekly workouts – Add greater intensity to one of your workouts per week. For example, do two or three minutes of at least your 5K pace in five or six intervals. By boosting this intensity once per week you’ll boost your training effectiveness.
Use striders at the end of one of your easier runs – When you’re on one of your easier runs during the week, try to finish with four or five striders, which are runs of 50 to 75 meters in length that are run at your 5K pace. This pace keeps the muscles in your legs used to a faster turnover.
Add other types of workouts – Make sure that you’re keeping your entire body toned, fit, and flexible. Workouts other than running can help you to target extra muscle groups. Try to work in workouts such as spin class, yoga, swimming, and other great whole body workouts.
Race – There is nothing like the extra motivation of competition against other people or against yourself to help you to boost your performance. Try to take part in a race around once every month. The rest of the time, don’t race, focus on training and gradual improvement. If you can’t find an official race in which to participate, have one of your own – even if you’re the only participant. Pick a distance of about 1.5 miles and time yourself, treating it just like a race.
Don’t forget to rest – You and your muscles need a day off to rest and recover.