First 4.5 mile run

I've just started running after years of inactivit(!). I've been training on a treadmill at home, and I'm currently able to run 5 miles in about 50 minutes.
I was a bit dismayed last week when I did my first run in the great outdoors to find how quickly I got tired out - mainly because I started too fast. Any tips for pacing when you don't have the visual indicators of a treadmill? Also, what's a reasonable time to run 4.5 miles if you're new to running - am I likely to be the last one to finish the race?


  • My only pacing gauge is how many footfalls per breath. Two steps in two out is hard work. I don't do faster than that. Three in three out is easy, and I go slower than that when I'm recovering from having tried to go faster.

    But - I have a very peculiar history, and what works for me may well not work for any one else.

    However, if you are getting tired out, go slower and WALK every five min or so (particularly early on in your session). There are lots of sources of encouragement to walk - Amby Burfoot article on site, Penguin column in every RW, and feature couple of months back. Once you can get round a distance without getting tired you can begin to vary your speeds over shorter runs.

    Last one in the race? So what? You're in it. I've never actually been dead last, but I've certainly come in well after the medals to winners have been awarded, and I've certainly run alone. That's at about 11-12min mile pace. Don't much care. I'm pleased to be out there.

    Reckon if you joined me in a race you would not be last.

    Have fun with it.

  • Don't be dismayed at the 'difficulty' of running outdoors. You need to get acclimatised to the harder surface, the changing air and the fact that there's always something interesting to look at that stops you concentrating in the way I guess you were when you pounding the treadmill. 2 or 3 more outdoor runs should get you used to it, then you may find going back indoors is less appealing.

    Can you measure a route (on a map or by driving it)? If you can, try to identify a couple of markers at a round distance (eg 1 mile) and then just time yourself between the points - you soon get a sens of how hard you are working to get what times.

    10 minute miles are very acceptable times. If you did an ordinary general 10k race in 65 minutes, I guess about 10% of the field would be behind you.
  • I've never much liked treadmills as I don't like anyone telling me how fast to run each step! Running outdoors gives you that freedom to control your own pace constantly but of course the only thing making your legs move forward is your own determination. Its a change of style, if you like. I've only found my pace as I do more and now I can 'feel' the pace I am doing fairly accuratly.

    I usually finish about 90% of the way back the field with mainly club runners (as opposed to fun runs). A flat(ish) 4.5m bringing me in at 45 mins.
  • Paul, I had the same trouble when I first went outdoors. Running in the gym gives you a false sense of security I think! It's totally different to outdoor running, but once I went outdoors, I never ventured back onto the treadmill! When I started, I went out in the car and measured a distance of about a 5 mile circuit, noting the 'markers' of each mile, then I invested in a sports watch and started timing my runs. Even if I beat my last run by a few seconds, I was pleased! Anyway, good luck to you and don't worry about where you finish in a race - maybe enter a few 5k races over a couple of months, then just try and beat your time at each race. Good luck!
  • i worry about being last, which is silly because i don't personally see the very last person in an event a failure, i am not sure why i feel so bothered that the very last person may be me, or why i place this pressure on myself

    i can understand not wanting to be like half hour behind, i have certainly come round to the idea that very last is fine as long as within few mins, well maybe under   10 mins 

    look at an event and times from previous years you will get an idea of the average times if you want a comparison. i am only ever really racing myself, sometimes my husband as we like to compete and banter about this for ages image

  • You'll get used to the great outdoors in time. I had my first outdoors run on the 22nd of December, I found it helped if I remembered that you should be able to hold a conversation when you're doing a long run - try singing (quietly though, no need to get sectioned), or even better run with someone and tlak to them.

    10 minute miles in most races will beat someone, you won't be last (unless it's a very good field). You will get beaten by 60 year old women, but that's okay, they were probably out running while you were enjoying your years of inactivity (that's what I told myself anyway)....

  • MillsyMillsy ✭✭✭
    I hope they have sorted their issues as this thread is 12 years old.
  • i never look at dates lol i just clicked last posts  - spooky its keeps them that long 

  • Gah! Necropost!


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