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Training Tips

Long Runs

The appropriate distance of your long run is one and a half to twice as long as your normal-length run. ... So if you're running 40 miles a week, you could run eight to 12 miles for your long run. GO FAR: Long runs should last between one and three hours.
Your optimal long run pace is between 55 and 75 percent of your 5k pace, with the average pace being about 65 percent. It's also evident from this research that running faster than 75% of your 5k pace on your long run doesn't provide a lot of additional physiological benefit.

Hill Running

Hill Running promotes the best running style: it makes you lean forward, develop a mid-foot strike and use your upper body more. Alternating uphills and downhills is similar to interval training, and perfect for improving lung power and VO2 max.

Tempo Runs

So what is a true tempo run? A tempo run—also known as an anaerobic threshold or lactate-threshold run—is a pace about 25 to 30 seconds per mile slower than your current 5K race pace. Without getting too technical, tempo pace is the effort level at which your body is able to clear as much lactate—a byproduct of burning carbohydrates—as it produces. Your body’s lactate clearance is at the same level as its lactate production, meaning the dreaded dead-leg sensation doesn’t set in.
That’s the key difference between a race and a tempo run. In an all-out session, your body bypasses this limit, allowing for fatigue to develop rapidly. A tempo pace, on the other hand, can be held steadily (albeit not too comfortably) for at least 20 minutes.

Interval Training

An interval training workout involves alternating periods of high-intensity effort with periods of low-intensity effort, which is called the recovery. For runners, this would typically involve interspersing bouts of fast running with slower running. The recovery phase is a really important part of interval training. The stop-start pattern trains your body to recover quickly between bursts of faster running, which over time will gradually increase your ability to run faster for longer.
During the high-intensity phase, your body mainly burns carbohydrates for energy. But during the recovery, your body mainly burns fat to produce the energy needed to help your body recover from the intense effort. This process can continue for hours after training. This can help you lose weight, as long as you're also eating healthily.
Interval training is an effective exercise for improving speed. Learning to run faster is a gradual process. Alternating bursts of fast running with a recovery period trains your muscles to work more efficiently and economically at higher speeds. Another benefit is that your routine moderately paced runs will feel easier.

Fartlek Training

Fartlek, a Swedish term that means "speed play," is a form of interval or speed training that can be effective in improving your running speed and endurance.
Fartlek running involves varying your pace throughout your run, alternating between fast segments and slow jogs. Unlike traditional interval training that uses specific timed or measured segments, fartleks are more unstructured. Work-rest intervals can be based on how the body feels. With fartlek training, you can experiment with pace and endurance, and experience changes of pace.
Many runners, especially beginners, enjoy fartlek training because it involves speed work, but it is more flexible and not as demanding as traditional interval training. Another benefit of fartlek training is that it doesn't have to be done on a track and can be done on all types of terrain, such as roads, trails, or hills. Fartlek training puts a little extra stress on your system, eventually leading to faster speeds and improving your anaerobic threshold.
To do a fartlek workout, try introducing some short periods of slightly higher pace into your normal runs. Maintain the faster pace for a short distance or time intervals, such as 200 meters or 30 seconds. The intervals can vary throughout the workout, and you can even use landmarks such as streetlights or telephone poles to mark your segments.
Once you complete a fast segment, slow your pace to below your normal running pace until you have fully recovered and your breathing has returned to normal. Then return to running at your normal pace, and incorporate more slightly fast intervals later in the run.

Training Tips: FAQ
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