Run time update

The Creature of the Night

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Hi all:

I want to write this post to both update everybody on my run-time; as well as to add a bit of motivation for those struggling to get their run time down.

So let's go back around 12 months ago. I couldn't run for toffee. 500 yards or so; and my chest was bad, was flattened and could not run at all. With anticipation of joining the RMR (with an aim of going regular); I got myself into order. This is how I done it:

First 3 months:
I started off running at a gentle pace of around a 15 minute mile. I remember how ecstatic I was when I completed it. Indeed, specific endorphins are released during running (which are equivalent to morphine) which give a euphoric high, if you like when running.

I started running every day (note: rest days are important; just I was impatient!). After this? I then started to up the distance (endurance); and added an extra mile to my route . Muscles in calves started to bulge (much to my satisfaction of showing off to the ladies!) and my chest endurance started to get better.

So I done this for around 3 weeks and, to cut a long story short, by the end of it; I was running around 35 miles a week at a 15-minute mile pace, by starting off slow. I then took the decision to take every Sunday off for my rest day (which I used to work on push ups!)

To sum up the first three months:
Find your pace and stick to it. Keep going until you're tired. At this stage? Essential to work on endurance, as opposed to speed:

Month 3 - 6:
The tedium of running at 'slow' pace started to get the better of me; so consequently? I started to incorporate interval training into my regime (e.g., One day endurance, the other intervals). This would incorporate myself running at my comfortable pace for exactly two minute, and then sprinting at around a 7 minute mile for a minute and slow back down to my comfortable pace. This was done until I could barely stand (use common sense! If you feel an injury is permeating? STOP and rest.

This was done for approximately 2 months, until my endurance time came down to a rather sexy 10 minute mile.

For those wondering how to train for intervals? The Army's App is a superb bit of digital kit however, it really is just hitting the tarmac.

To sum up months 3 to 6:
Keep up your endurance runs but start mixing in intervals. Attempt to run at twice your comfortable pace and do until (or, in my terminology; which probably lacks the gravitas required in this P.C world) destruction (or tried) and again, calves will get strong, endurance will sore and your pace will increases naturally.

Months 6 to 9:
By now? I was managing an 8 minute mile, and could hold this pace for around 3 miles however, then I would buckle. To rectify this? I binned the intervals and started completing what I termed as 'hilltervals' into my regime; whereby I would sprint up hills as best I could, and walk back down, and do it again (again, until destruction).

This sent my endurance soaring, and I could now comfortably run a 8 minute mile over a 5 mile distance. Also? My endurance run days were increasing in length, whereby I was completing close on 10 mile runs a day (obviously NOT at the 8 minute pace all the way; only up to around 5 miles or so!)

To sum up months 6 to 9:
Keep doing your endurance runs to build your cardiovascular and incorporate the 'hilltervals' regularly. You will see a massive improvement after this period however, you might not notice it.

Months 9 t0 the present:
This morning? I managed to run 5 miles in 30 minutes (which is around a 6 minute mile! And the first time I've tested myself for a while); and for this month? I simply went longer on the endurance runs and sprinted further up the hills. However? I keep challenging myself. I am extremely pleased with how I've done this; and it might have taken 12 months, but it's been worth it!

To sum up months 9 to the present day:
Keep doing what you've been doing, but increase run time and hills!

Thing I would like struggling with running to take away from this? You can do it. Me? I am a smoker, flat feet and was not in the best of shape; yet, I slowly worked myself up to a 6 minute mile. If I can do it? So can you!

Also, do not be afraid of the treadmill. Use it to your advantage. Remember? It can be tedious but, it's you who's in control of it; not it. So mind over matter! Furthermore? Even if it's cold, wet or windy? Go out and make that effort! Remember? Your body is capable of anything. I know the feeling of gasping for air and thinking that you'll be walking the stairway to heaven or hell but, your body is capable of more than what you think. 30'000 years' worth of evolution have gone into creating it and making it adaptable and being able to be put through to abuse. It is just we are conditioned to think otherwise.

Also? LISTEN to your body. If you feel an injury permeating (as said above); take it easy. Rest and get fit to continue. Don't underestimate rest days, either. You're asking your body to do a lot of work when running (e.g., you can burn up to 1200kCal on an hour's run); so you will need that rest day.

Sorry for the rambling post!

Best wishes:
The Creature Of The Night.
 

Caversham

RM Commando, Crossed The Bar 13/12/2020
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That's a good resume of your progress and goes to prove that if you put the miles in the timings will drop.

My advice now is to increase your mileage. If you can gradually increase your mileage to around 10 miles you are into serious running and whilst you should not expect to be at 6 minute mile pace, (it wold be great if you were), you should expect to be running 10 miles in under 70 minutes.

However, that's no good if you haven't passed your PJFT. For that you need to get on the treadmill and practice, practice and then practice some more.

Good luck and well done!

Alan
 

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