Running for Speed and Endurance
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As a distance runner, it’s important to incorporate speed work into your training plan to increase your speed, power, and endurance on race day. Whether you’re a marathon runner or an ultra-marathon runner, including speed work in your training regimen can help you achieve your personal best.

In this article, we’ll cover 9-speed work workouts that will help you take fast pace of your running to the next level. These workouts are designed to improve your 10k pace, increase your running efficiency, and help you tackle those challenging hills. So, let’s dive in!

What is a Speed Workout?

A speed workout for distance runners is a type of running workout that involves running at a faster pace than your normal easy run pace. The goal of running speed workouts, is to improve your running speed and running economy.

Speed Workouts

Interval Training:

This is one of the most popular speed work workouts for distance runners. It involves running at goal race pace at a high intensity for a short period of time and then recovering at a slower pace.

For example, you could run at your 5k pace for 1 minute and then recover for 1-2 minutes by jogging or walking. Repeat this cycle for anywhere from 4-10 intervals. This workout will help improve your anaerobic threshold and help you maintain a faster pace for a longer period of time.

Hill Repeats:

Running uphill is challenging but can help increase your overall strength and speed. Find a hill that’s steep enough to make it difficult but not impossible, and run up that hill for 30-60 seconds at a high-intensity level.

Then, walk or jog back down the hill to recover. Repeat this cycle for 5-10 times. This workout will improve your running form and help you tackle those hilly courses.

Fartlek Training:

Fartlek is a Swedish term that means “speed play or tempo pace”. This workout involves alternating between faster and slower paces during your run.

For example, you could run at a faster pace for 2 minutes and then slow down to an easy pace for 1 minute. Repeat this cycle for 20-30 minutes. Fartleks are a great way to improve your overall endurance and increase your overall speed without putting too much stress on your body.

Tempo Runs:

Tempo runs are a great way to increase your lactate threshold and improve your running economy. It would be best to aim to run at your goal pace, 10k pace, or a pace that’s slightly faster than your half marathon pace for 20-30 minutes.

Recover for 5 minutes and then repeat. Tempo runs will train your body to maintain a comfortable pace for a longer period of time.

Marathon Training – Yasso 800s:

Yasso 800s is a marathon speed workout named after Bart Yasso, the former Chief Running Officer at Runner’s World.

This workout involves running 800 meters at a high-intensity pace and then recovering for the same amount of time it took you to complete the 800 meters.

For example, if you run 800 meters in 3 minutes, then you should recover for 3 minutes. Repeat this cycle for 6-10 intervals. Yasso 800s are a great way to improve your overall speed and help you maintain a consistent pace during a race.

Strides:

Strides are short, quick sprints track workouts that are designed to increase your running efficiency and improve your running form.

Start by jogging or walking for 5-10 minutes to warm up. Then, sprint at a high-intensity level for 20-30 seconds and follow that up with a slow jog or walk for 1-2 minutes to recover.

Repeat this cycle for 10-15 strides. Strides are a great way to improve your turnover rate and increase your overall speed.

Cut-down Runs:

Cut-down runs are designed to improve your running efficiency and help you maintain a faster pace for a longer period of time.

Start your run comfortably and then gradually increase your speed every mile. By the end of your run, you should be running at a pace that’s faster than your mile race pace or your 10k pace. Cut-down runs will train your body to maintain consistent effort throughout your run.

400-meter Intervals:

400-meter intervals are a great way to improve your overall speed and power. Start tempo run by running 400 meters at a high-intensity level and then recover for 1-2 minutes.

Repeat this cycle for 6-10 intervals. 400-meter intervals will improve your anaerobic capacity and make it easier for you to maintain a faster pace during a race.

Plyometrics:

Plyometrics are exercises that involve explosive movements that are designed to increase your power and agility.

Incorporating plyometric exercises like jump squats, box jumps, and bounding into your training regimen can make you a stronger running faster, and more efficient runner.

Speed Work – Questions and Answers

What is speedwork in running?

Speedwork is a running workout where you are near or at or faster than your goal VO2max pace.

How many miles should a speed workout be?

Aim for the workouts to be anywhere from one mile repeats to three miles workout intervals done at a 5k pace or faster.

How many times a week should you do speed training?

Two to three speed workouts are great. Any more than three weekly interval workouts can lead to overtraining and poor recovery.

How can distance runners get faster?

There are many options for improving your race pace and speed endurance.

  • Speed workouts of course. Run faster to get faster.
  • Balanced body

Conclusion:

In conclusion, incorporating speed work workouts into your training regimen can help take your running to the next level. Whether you’re looking to improve your 10k pace or tackle those challenging hills, these 9 speed work workouts are sure to help you achieve your goal race distance or personal best.

Always warm up before your workouts and listen to your body to avoid injury. Happy running!

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