Any joggers out there?

Discussion in 'Community' started by Abstract, May 21, 2005.

  1. Abstract macrumors Penryn

    Abstract

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    #1
    Got a question for you joggers or runners out there. How do I increase my running distance and improve my time? I know it sounds easy......."just run often and you'll naturally get better." But that doesn't appear to be the case.

    I have run the same route for a while now. Last year, I ran this route as well. I have always run it in around 30 minutes, but now I'm thinking that this is very slow for such a short distance.

    I used my car yesterday to get a somewhat accurate read on the distance I jog, and its only around 5 km. I used to guesstimate that it was around 6 km, so 5 km in 28 minutes (I timed myself yesterday as well) 1 km in 5.6 minutes, isn't good. I think good joggers aim for 1 km in 4 minutes. Why am I still doing this distance so slowly?

    That's 3.1 miles in 28 minutes, or 9 minutes to jog 1 mile.

    When I first started, I thought that I would run this route, and when it got easy and routine, and my time improved, that I would move on to further distances. I haven't improved, and this 5 km run always feels difficult no matter how often I do it. :(

    What should I do? Should I try for longer routes anyway? Should I stop working out (lifting weights and such)?? Should I change routes completely?
     
  2. iLikeMyiMac macrumors 6502a

    iLikeMyiMac

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    #2
    Try a longer stride and try to improve your form. Weights could help too.
     
  3. superbovine macrumors 68030

    superbovine

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    #3
    my running didn't improve a lot until i started running with other people that would push me. although it doesn't seem to be a matter of motivation for you. however, it never hurts.
     
  4. jhar257 macrumors newbie

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    Jul 1, 2003
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    Pasadena, CA
    #4
    Running tips

    If you want to run quicker try these:

    1. Interval training - run one mile as fast as you can, jog next to recover, run next mile fast as you can, jog next etc. This should improve your stamina. Have a look at fartlek training.
    2. Do shorter distances from time to time, but run much harder all the way
    3. Try to include hills on your route - makes it more interesting and improves stamina!
    4. Jog with other people who are just a bit faster than you.

    Hope this helps. Make sure you've got good shoes that you change regularly - your knees will thank you!

    good luck
     
  5. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

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    #5
    I want to echo #1 -- and as a variant, you might try running at a fast but not sprinting pace for a regulated amount of time (which should be *less* than the longest you can bear at that pace!), and switching back and forth to the slower pace...then as you continue to train, try to get the percentage of time at the fast pace higher and higher by switching off less and increasing the length of the fast blocks.

    Also as an echo of #4, this is one of the best reasons to run in road races! :)

    And then one more thing I'll add, which worked for me in the past but isn't for everyone (and I haven't been able to do it recently, sadly) is to incorporate treadmill running in your regime. Running on a treadmill at fixed pace and varying that pace as you train can be really powerful in getting your body accustomed to running at a faster pace.

    Take all this with the grain of salt that I can finish marathons, but I am *not* terribly fast... :(
     
  6. iGary Guest

    iGary

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  7. Abstract thread starter macrumors Penryn

    Abstract

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    #7
    I was actually thinking of shorter strides, or strides where you don't pick up your legs too far off the ground. I thought maybe that would 'conserve energy', although I didn't used to do this. Nothing seems to affect my time at all.

    And I'll definitely try interval training. :) Actually, I used to jog faster at the beginning and continually slow down a bit, and then hit an equilibrium where I wouldn't slow down anymore and still ran at an okay pace. I noticed this, and decided to pace myself and go steady and at a medium pace throughout my entire run ---- no affect on time.

    I also notice that after 5-10 minutes, I feel very tired, but if I keep running while exhausted, I'll get to a point 20-25 minutes into my running where I don't get any more tired and feel as if I can run for another 20-25 minutes, although I don't. ;)

    Do you recommend running every day? Every 2-4 days? I also noticed that if I stop running for a long time, say 1 month, and then I go for a run, I tend to actually have BETTER stamina, and my legs don't feel as heavy and such.
     
  8. howard macrumors 68020

    howard

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    Nov 18, 2002
    #8
    what is the hardest part of running for you? lungs, heart, or leg muscles? if you can target the hard areas it would help... heart and lungs, try swimming...muscles, try lifting weights.

    how is your running form? look up and straight ahead, if your looking at the ground you'll go slow, also keep your mind into it. also, keep your long strides for sure!! keep a regular breathing pattern, deep and slow and through your mouth and nose.

    also, try eating spagetti and lots of carbs 3-5 hours before running, it will give you boat loads of energy, just keep pushing it and you'll get there

    also if you find that you feel better after not running for a month and then running, try taking a break every once and awhile then, but not for more than 4 days. and the change up helps too, don't runn the same route every time.. do sprints, do long runs, mix up hills, everything..change will help.
     
  9. Abstract thread starter macrumors Penryn

    Abstract

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    #9
    The hardest part? Well, it seems that the hardest part is that my heart feels like its going to explode and I feel like quitting even as I'm running. But I don't wanna be anyone's b**tch, so I keep on going as if I'm jogging with someone who would make fun of me if I stopped. :p

    I just jogged with a stopwatch for once and I ran 5 km (3 miles) in 23m30s, which is decent. Its under 5 minutes per kilometre!! So it took 4m42sec to run every kilometre, on average. Or its around 7.6 minutes to run each mile.

    Long strides definitely help. I don't know if I have proper form like a few of you have asked me about, but I think I have an idea. When I get tired and lazy, I take "stomps" instead of steps, meaning my feet land flat on the ground rather than "heel-first, then lift-off with the toes." Once I get tired, I can't seem to do that anymore.

    Anyway, thanks for the tips. :) I'll tell you if I break 20 minutes.
     
  10. howard macrumors 68020

    howard

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    Nov 18, 2002
    #10
    breaking 20 mins is tough! 23mins for 5k i would say is a pretty good time. i used to be around 21-22 mins in 5k in highschool. i havn't jogged much since then but am now getting back into it. anyway try and keep a positive outlook when you are running, if you are thinking about quitting and someone making fun of you if you stuff then your probably not enjoying yourself. Instead, look around at the scenery, concentrate on running the best form you can...and as corny as it sounds, think about "happy" or positive things.

    also if at all possible, try swimming, its a fantastic cardiovascular workout that will work your heart and lungs, and try some leg weights as well, just not to much.
     
  11. mad jew Moderator emeritus

    mad jew

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    #11
    I do a lot of running but it's mainly the short distance stuff. Nevertheless, part of my training is a 5km run every couple of nights and the single biggest improvement I made was when I started listening to music as I ran. Try some fast dance music (whether or not you like it) and see if you can keep the pace.
     
  12. emw macrumors G4

    emw

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    Aug 2, 2004
    #12
    I'm getting ready to head out for a run this morning, in fact, so a timely thread. I'd suggest getting a heart rate monitor - you can pick them up for not a lot of cash, depending on the features you want. It will help you to gauge how much effort you are really putting forth.

    Also, my belief is that you don't want longer strides - in my opinion they are harder on the knees than shorter strides, and IIRC, Jeff Galloway had a similar comment in a recent Runner's World.

    In terms of getting faster, there have already been some good suggestions - interval training, running with someone who pushes you, etc. If you belong to a health club, you can also try using a treadmill once in a while and pushing the speed up a little bit so that you can feel what faster does to you.
     
  13. toaster_oven macrumors regular

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    #13
    like other people said - interval training... you'll get noticeably faster on your long runs in a couple months.

    i'd say intervals over fartlek... fartlek is fun to say, though... i never did fartlek in college (i ran cross and track in college), just a lot of intervals and weight training... i enjoy fartlek and still do it from time to time. ;)

    don't do the long-stride thing... it's not really that helpful... just run the way that feels natural to you... and then if you feel yourself getting tired, shorten your stride... if you do this, you'll be able to maintain a faster pace on longer runs, and you won't go all "clompy." it's a little difficult, but you're actually giving your body a little rest. let your arms and stomach (abs) help your stride too... your whole body is running, not just your legs.

    oh- just running 5k's isn't really enough to get better... try doing the 8k or 10k every other day at a relaxed pace (even if you have to walk part of it the first few times, it's ok. believe me... it's ok. just do the entire course)... you shouldn't try to push yourself every time you go for a run... save your fast 5k for once a week, maybe on a saturday or something... but make sure you run another really slow 4-5k (even if you walk most of it) afterwards... you won't feel as sore the next day. the "running for beginners" site is pretty good- just don't feel guilty about walking... it's ok. it's actually better to walk a little bit during your run as you are trying to build up your mileage... you could really burn yourself out if you try going all out on an 8k if all you've been doing is 5ks. and on days you feel like crap- go easy... even if you feel like a turtle when you are running... it's still better than staying at home wishing you had gone out

    hope this is helpful... good luck... and have fun (it's hard in the beginning, but it gets easier).

    -to

    ps don't forget to stretch...
     
  14. emw macrumors G4

    emw

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    #14
    Having gone running this morning, I have another suggestion to get faster. Every once in awhile, run into a stiff wind pushing a double-wide jogging stroller filled with 60 pounds worth of kids.

    If you don't have kids, and can't borrow somebody else's, you can get the same effect by strapping an open parachute on your back and running through the neighborhood that way.

    Whew!
     
  15. xsedrinam macrumors 601

    xsedrinam

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    Oct 21, 2004
    #15
    Abstract, congrats on wanting to stay with it and improve. As you've read, there are lots of good books and articles out there; but just a word of caution on the interval training. Make sure you have a good base of consistent distance training underway BEFORE going in to speed training. I've known and seen more runners (this one included) who've crashed or encountered injuries when "cranking up" the routine, largely due to an insufficient mileage/kilometer base which had not been consistent over 8+weeks.

    You'll have heridity to reckon with, also. Some are blessed with slow twitch muscle fiber and are able to endure long/longer runs with less wear and tear. Though the fast twitch muscle group has a higher ceiling for speed, their use of glycogen and firing off stored energy wains faster the longer the distance. Listen to your body. If it's screaming for breath after a 5K, you may be going out too fast at the start and virtually running past your second wind. You should be settling in to a comfortible pace and stride after about 6-7 minutes in to the run. Good luck and may you have the wind at your back.
    X
     
  16. iGary Guest

    iGary

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    #16
    Did you read the Galloway site?
     
  17. xsedrinam macrumors 601

    xsedrinam

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    #17
    Great site...and advice. Hey Gary, how's it going? Did you say your last one was the Marine? The Galloway regimen shows a solid schedule, but doesn't include a long run (20+) over the last 8 weeks. Have you done your 11 marathons without a weekly long one in your training? Injury free is a good thing.
    X
     
  18. Inspector Lee macrumors 6502a

    Inspector Lee

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    #18
    I agree. I'll run 3 miles anywhere between 21:20 - 22:30 depending on mood, friskiness, and songs coming out of my mini. I do this 6 days a week and use it as a general stress-reliever/warm-up for my whole workout routine. I like to have a sweat going before I hit the machines.

    I also find the 3-mile mark to be psychologically appealing in that I don't dread having to do it every day. I've fiddled with 50/60 minute runs before and found it hard on my body and my psyche, especially trying to do it 5-6 days a week. On the whole, 30 minutes is the ideal target time for aerobic activity.

    Agree with all the previous posters on everything. Sprints will improve your speed. If you are near an outdoor track, might be best to try the sprints there. For example, run your three miles on the track and sprint the ends of the track. Then work your way up to sprinting the straightaways. Or you could use your watch and sprint for 30 seconds, run at your normal pace for 2-3 minutes and then sprint again.

    Long distances are really all about pace. After a while, you'll plateau. I've found that my breathing on the 4th or 5th mile can be no different than right now as I type this.

    Best of luck.
     
  19. iGary Guest

    iGary

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    #19
    Last one was Delaware a week ago. :D

    I always do at least 12 every Sunday, even if I miss everything else. I've also found that training past 26 is a real help, too. I've been training to 30 a month before my races and it has worked well.

    Now taking a light month, trying to drop some weight to get ready for fall. :D

    The Galloway program is great once one gets past the idea that walking every 5-8 minutes for a minute does not = slow. I beat many of my friends in the last marathon who never stopped for a walk break and i took one every 6 minutes the first half of the race.
     
  20. Abstract thread starter macrumors Penryn

    Abstract

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    #20
    Wow, lots of good advice. I never knew that people took walking breaks during marathons. Furthest I've ever run was 14K, and I pretty much ran the entire race, stopping 3 times for around 30 seconds and feeling guilty about it. :eek:

    And I'll try to run slower, but increase my distance.

    Anyway, how do you guys breathe? Do you take big breaths, or do you try taking normal breaths? I tried to take big breaths because I thought the extra oxygen would be good, but seeing as how I feel my heart and lungs is taking the biggest beating even after running 5K for so long now, I think I may try breathing less, or slower.
     
  21. xsedrinam macrumors 601

    xsedrinam

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    #21
    I'm glad this thread was started. Been looking for some motivational dialogue to get back in to running. Hepatitis knocked me out of a nearly 15 year period of running which included 3 marathons. I've never quite made it back, then knees...blah, blah, blah. Anyway, thanks for talking about running. I'd like to go for another marathon in my old age...really curious if I could come back. Motivation, schedule, prorities, etc. would need a good, swift kick and a well thought out revamping. Not that I'm masochistic or anything :D But I really did enjoy the movement, training and the nice high on endorphines after a good run. :)
    X
     
  22. Duff-Man macrumors 68030

    Duff-Man

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    #22
    Duff-Man says....I used to do jogging in the mornings until I wrecked my knees playing hockey. Now I cycle or power-walk a couple hours when I can - even that sometimes bothers the knees, especially cycling up hills when I put more pressure on them. I am working on rehabilitating the knees but it seems to be such a long process...maybe they need surgery or something but that is a last resort for me....oh yeah!
     
  23. xsedrinam macrumors 601

    xsedrinam

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    #23
    I had orthoscopic done on the right knee two years ago. Aside from limping with one leg an inch shorter, it went well.....just kidding :) The therapy of walking and doing leg lifts to build up the quads is the key. That's why I'm getting anzy to see if I have some more mileage left in this old body.
    X
     
  24. craigdawg macrumors 6502

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    #24
    I used to HATE running and runners. Now I run about 8-10 miles a week and I really enjoy it. But I prefer to cycle when I can, especially when it starts getting hot.

    I'm in the same boat as Abstract in that I haven't seen a huge improvement in my times. Thanks for the links and the advice.

    So I had a shoe question: How often should I be replacing my shoes?
     
  25. Plymouthbreezer macrumors 601

    Plymouthbreezer

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    #25
    For me, the hardest part is the stomach cramps! Boy, do those stink!

    However, my legs, heart, and other parts are always okay. And after 3 miles or so, the cramps go away... It's getting through the 1.5-3 mile markers for me.

    What do y'all do for times?? I'm at 67.8 seconds for a 400 (one lap, on a standard track...), 2:40 for the 800, 6:42 for a mile, and around 14:50 for two miles... Over the summer I hope to get down to a sub 6:30 mile, and the 400 in under 65 seconds.
     

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