Want a faster 'easy run' pace? Marathon pace? 5K pace? Science and practical experience tells us that by increasing your maximal sprint speed ALL other speeds become faster, too. Due to your ability to recruit more muscle fibers and generate more stiffness at impact, running starts to cost less energy, so you become more efficient. So, if you've been doing some speedwork and feel ready to level up, here are three great sprinting cues you can use today!
When analyzing a runner's training log one thing that usually jumps out at me is what's missing. I look for gaps.One gap that is very common is speed. And with good reason – it requires knowledge to do it correctly and it's easy to get hurt!
Today I'd like to keep things simple and give you a useful cue to consider when you're out there practicing running fast. It's especially useful when you're accelerating and something to rely on when you're channeling your inner Usain Bolt.
By far, one of the biggest differences between well-trained runners and wannabes is the competency at a variety of paces. Just like your favorite road bike has lots of different gears to optimize your effort and pace, so should you as a runner.
Strides are a “need to do, not a nice to do” as coach Vern Gambetta likes to say. Yet, in my experience, people aren't doing them and they're such an easy and convenient way to develop speed.
What does an effective speed workout for distance runners look like? What ingredients should you include so that you reap the most benefit for the time you're spending?
Typically used as part of a good warm up, practicing the “ankling” drill will teach you how to be stiff at the right time and how to react off the ground properly.
Every year, around January, I find myself in pretty good shape and I think to myself, “But I'm not training THAT hard.” The secret, I'm convinced, is the Fartlek workout.
When we talk bang for the buck, sprints have to rank near the top of the list of things you can do that will noticeably improve your distance running in a short time period. From improving your coordination to developing stride power, just a small amount of sprinting can take your running to the next level in only a few weeks. They can be magical, but they can also be disastrous, however. The range of motion required and your body's ability to tolerate huge amounts of force determine if you should even try sprinting in the first place.
Once you've addressed your tissue quality and joint mobility and, at a bare minimum, woken up your sleepy butt muscles, you are ready to incorporate a highly effective form of speed training into your routine: Strides! The thing I love about strides is that they don't carry the same injury risk as all out sprinting, but give nearly the same benefits.