Running Program Week 4

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HAPPY LABOR DAY!!!

During the last 3 columns we’ve discussed general running guidelines to help you design a running program to prepare you for the local, popular runs, the Portland Marathon and the Girlfriends Run for a Cure that will have thousands of runners and walkers participating from around the Northwest this fall. Last week, we reviewed an action plan in the event you are experiencing nagging aches and pains associated with running.

Today, I wanted to talk about a running program that will help improve your performance as a runner.  Although most participants are just happy to get to the finish line of these events, there is a number of people that really want to work on their speed.

If you want to get fast, you have to train fast.

Makes sense right?  The good news is though, not every workout needs to be a hard, speed workout.  If you incorporate a faster run/walk just 1-2 times per week, you will start to notice you are running (or walking) faster in no time! You just need to improve your leg turnover speed and get your muscles accustomed to contracting more quickly.

So here are a few workouts to help you become speedier for any upcoming events:

First, always warm-up first (1/2 – 1 mile warm-up or 5-10 minutes of walking first then progressing into light jogging).  And always cool down afterwards (1/2 – 1 mile easy cool down)

Typically, if you are going to go hard, you don’t have to go as long.  So you can get away with 3-4 miles of speed training focusing on quality.

Here are a few sample speed workouts that you can try right away.  Keep in mind though, if you are just starting with running, you should focus on building your base conditioning and consistency first before you start incorporating speed workouts.

Sample Speed Workouts that you can do on the road or treadmill:

  1. 30 seconds hard / 1.5 minutes moderate x 10-15 repeats for a 20-30 minute workout
  2. 1 minute hard / 4 minute moderate x 4-6 repeats for a 20-30 minute workout
  3. 1 minute hard / 3 minute moderate x 5-8 repeats for a 20-32 minute workout
  4. 1 minute hard / 2 minute moderate x 7-10 repeats for a 21-30 minute workout
  5. 1 minute hard / 1 minute moderate x 10-15 repeats for a 20-30 minute workout
  6. 1.5 minute hard / 1.5 minute moderate x 7-10 repeats for a 21-30 minute workout
  7. 2 minute hard / 2 minute moderate x 508 repeats for a 20-32 minute workout

At the Track (4 laps = 1 mile)

  1. Run hard on Straight, easy on Curves x 4 laps one way, 4 the other way (8 laps total with a short rest in between each mile)
  2. Run 200 E / 200 H x 4 laps one way, 4laps the other way (8 total laps with a short rest in between each mile)
  3. Run 400 H / 400 E x 4 laps total, repeat the other way (8 laps total with a short rest in between each mile)
  4. Run 800 H / 800 E for 4 laps total, repeat the other way (8 laps total with a short rest in between each mile)
  5. Run with a buddy.  Start running easy in opposite directions. When you pass each other, go hard until you pass each other again and then recover.  Go hard when you pass again.  Continue for 1 mile one way. Take a short break and repeat running opposite directions.

If you are more advanced, complete 3-4 miles total (or 12-16 laps of speed internals).

Finish your track workouts with 100 meter fast strides x 5-10 repeats with a walking rest in between.  Cool down to finish.

If you are looking for a group to train with, we host a weekly training run

Yours in Health & Fitness,
Sherri McMillan

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