I will be honest – running can get boring if you do the same thing every single time, even if you change your route.
This article is to tell you about different types of running training, give you some more ideas and options to spice things up and try out something new!
So let’s start with…
Good old LONG RUN!
This is one of my favourites! It really gives you time to clear your head and that feeling of achievement is amazing at the end.
I also choose a nicer route for my long runs – it is a lot more enjoyable and time seems to go faster.
But how long is a long run?
There is no set mileage really. Of course, it depends on your fitness level. I would suggest running around 30% of you weekly mileage. Of course this might not be the same every week, but just take an average.
Honestly? Anything longer than your normal runs will be fine, just try to increase it little by little every time and you will slowly see the difference.
The next type of running training that goes hand in hand with a long run is…
As I said, it can be a part of your long run if you are feeling brave and want a challenge. All it really is, in simple words – running the next mile at a faster pace.
You don’t have to race, just go a little faster. And the next mile – even faster. By the time you are on your last mile – it should be a lot faster than your first!
I find progression running quite hard but extremely rewarding! Try it next time!
Time for a recovery run.
This is pretty self-explanatory – just an easy run at a fairly slow pace. Your body needs to recover after all the hard work.
This is a saver for me if I feel sore. It feels horrible to start with but when you get over that, it really does reduce the soreness and helps to recover a lot quicker. So… if you are sore – don’t just lie in bed and feel sorry for yourself.
Get up and make your body even stronger when you’re aching! Please remember however – don’t lose you form. You might feel sluggish and tired so keep an eye out. Sacrificing your form can lead to injuries!
Tempo run – oh yes!
This used to be my least favourite type, being a runner who prefers longer runs at a steady pace. But I do these once in a while to challenge my body and mind.
Tempo runs are all about a consistent pace which should be moderately hard. So what does this really mean? The pace will be different for each individual. It is basically the fastest pace that can be sustained for a longer period of time.
If you are a beginner – start with doing 1 slow warm up mile, then 1 mile at the fastest pace (remember that it has to be consistent, not a minute of crazy fast and then slowing down) and then, a mile of a slow recovery run. Once you get comfortable with that (as comfortable as it can get..), increase the fast mile to 2 miles and so on..
Remember that this is quite a challenging type of running and you should allow for some time to recover after.
Dreaded hill sessions…
How can we not mention those hills when talking about running? There is absolutely no doubt – they are hard!
But! There are so many benefits to these hill sessions!
Firstly, if you are struggling to keep your form while running – hills will help. It is pretty hard/impossible to run up a hill while doing a heel strike (just trying to imagine someone doing it..). It also makes you utilize your hamstrings and glutes more.
There are many sessions you can actually do. All depends on what kind of hills are around you really. If there are none – it is pretty hard to do a hill session unless you use a treadmill.
If you do have some hills around you, the idea is – run hard up the hills and jog when it goes down. You might be tempted go as fast as you can down the hill but it doesn’t actually give you much benefit apart from making your pace look good. Plus – if you do it wrong, here come the injuries!
In regard to the length of the session, again, this really depends on your current fitness level. I always say – start slow and build up, go from short distance to a little longer every time.
Interval running – test yourself!
This is fairly similar to tempo runs, only instead of one fast pace mile/s, you split this up in intervals.
There is no one certain way of doing this. It depends on whether you are training for a specific race or just want to challenge yourself and try something new. You can make your own rules but the main thing is – stick to them!
Set yourself a certain interval program. Pick a length of the interval – for example, 800m at a fast pace with a minute or two jogging in between.
As I said – the main thing with these – stick to what you have set and don’t stop! If needed, reduce the distance, but don’t stop!
Don’t forget about your normal base run!
Doing different running sessions is good and beneficial but you should not forget about your normal base run.
This s just your normal moderate-pace, moderate-length run that feels natural. Not too fast but not quite the recovery run either!
I use these runs to concentrate on keeping a good form and just enjoy myself!
Consistency is the key!
I can’t stress this enough that, any session you are doing, be consistent! This is how you will improve and also maintain your energy levels which will help your motivation.
I hope you are now more familiar with the different types of running training and are ready to try out something new. There are of course more sessions and types, but these are the main ones to keep you going!
Enjoy and keep being consistent!