A guide on running pace

 In Event, Fitness, Running

To achieve your running goals, you must have a plan. However, only you know how a run should feel. No matter how someone else functions and grows according to a plan, you must alter and tweak the plan to make it your own for it to work for you. If you are pushing yourself too hard or if you are not pushing yourself hard enough; no plan is going to work for you.

The following list is broken down according to the average running level.


Easy Talk Running

An easy run should not leave you sore and overworked. The easy run should be an effort level of 6 out of 10. It should raise your heart rate to 65% of your maximum. You should be able to run while carrying on a chat with a running buddy. There is an old saying; “If you can talk while you are running, you are doing it right. If you can sing while you are running, push harder!” Let go of the misconception that you must push yourself to the max to do any good.


Steady Running

This is the pace you should run at most of the time. The effort level should be around 7 out of 10 and the maximum heart rate should be raised between 70% & 75%. Pushing yourself beyond this level for most runs is not effective and will leave you too tired to function. There will be times when your plan requires more ambition, and this steady running prepares you without wearing you out. Again, you should be able to chat with a running buddy while steady running.


Uncomfortable Threshold Running

This is where you will begin to push. Your effort level should be 8 or 9 out of ten. You should maintain a maximum heart rate increase of between 80% and 85%. You should not be able to carry on a conversation. You can test this. If you are able to say more than 4 words while running at this pace without taking a breath, you are not pushing hard enough. If you cannot even get out three or four words, pull back a bit. It is okay if you can only do this a few times a week. However if you are serious about running, this is something you must master.


Interval Running

Interval running is running at the pace of a 5K or 10K race. It is a pace you should only run at once or twice per week. This level of training does bring the pain. The pace level is 9 to 10 out of 10. The maximum heart raise rise should be between 85% & 90 %.


If you use this guide to help you achieve your long and short term goals you cannot fail. However, if this type of schedule is in the cards, consider joining a running group to help you along and to give you competitiveness and challenge.

Photo by David Baird



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