Couch to 5K
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I can run for 30mins but how do i increase my speed?

I have got myself up to running for 30mins non-stop but only at a very slow pace (6km per hour). I was very, very unfit before starting. How should I go about increasing my speed. I run on a treadmill so it's easy to keep a steady pace.

advice please

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No idea - I'm at 30 minutes too but only covering 4 km (8 kph). Like to get faster and run for longer but need to finish week 9 firstly!

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It is said that doing hill work will improve your time on the flat, as will doing sprints.

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You don't say how long you've been running... it takes time but the best way to improve your time is just to keep running regularly. You could try some intervals, running at your normal pace and pushing yourself into slightly faster speeds for a few minutes at a time, or hill running. I'd suggest simply taking a step out of the door and discovering running in the fresh air, unless you live in the North Pole - it's a lot more motivating than the same old view from the dreadmill.

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Can you run outside and try fartleks? That's what sped me up. I'd pick a route outside that takes 20 minutes. Then start running. Whenever you fancy, pick up the pace and run faster. How much faster? However fast you want. Slightly faster, considerably faster, speedy as heck, doesn't matter. Then pick a point to slow down. Maybe after a block, maybe after a telephone pole or two, maybe after you pass somebody, etc. How slow? Back to your normal pace or slower, often I've pushed myself so hard I need to walk. And then after a little bit of recovery, pick a new point on your run to start going faster again. It's really, really fun, and it really helps you run faster on your usual journeys.

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If you were outdoors I would say run further to run faster. Greater distance will improve your stamina. If you are on a treadmill.............turn up the speed!

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I believe that training and running for endurance tends to DECREASE the ability to run faster. Makes sense for me - running longer at slow paces improves endurance but does nothing for either stamina or speed. Sounds pedantic? I regard endurance as the ability to run a certain distance, while stamina is the ability to run that same distance at a selected pace and speed is the ability to increase pace during that run for short periods ( to either shake off a competitor or to kick at the finish of a race to defeat a competitor) . Most people who want to run "faster" are really looking for increased stamina to run a certain distance at a faster overall pace. To do this we have to answer the question - how do we eat an elephant. Answer is one spoonful at a time. Hence to improve stamina over say a 5K ( and hence improve overall finishing times) we need to be able to firstly run segments of that distance at a faster pace and slowly combine those segments until we are running the entire distance at that increased pace. Hence running a number of "repeats" with short (but decreasing ) rests inbetween each repeat is the way to go. Try running a number 500 metre repeats at first, then increase to 1 klm repeats and finally mile repeats - all aimed at a per klm pace faster than what your average 5K pace is currently. So if your current best 5k average pace is say 8 mins per K, try some repeats at 7:45 mins per k - maybe twice per week if you are running 4 times per week or only once per week if you are running 3 times per week. Don't overdo it .

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thank you. that was very helpful advice. i will start that on saturday

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Have you thought about running outdoors where it is much easier to vary what you do?

I seem to have had an improvement in speed/return to where I was from running with my normal full backpack on for a while, you could try that on the treadmill.

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