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Totally agree with other advice here. Speedwork etc DOES improve times but unless you've already got a decent level of fitness and are logging a good number of steady miles every week, it won't be of as much benefit as simply increasing the amount of overall running you're doing, and it's a good way to get injured.
Years ago I got my HM time down from 2.25 to 2.07 to 1.56 to 1.50 within two years, just by losing 20 lbs, doing quite a lot of gym based cardio work, and running at a steady pace 4 times a week. No speedwork, no intervals, just steady running.
Wow, bringing your times down by that much is great. Losing 20lbs too. Are you still running ?
Great advice on here isn't it ? Has really helped me. I know I will do the HM in a good time now and without getting injured in the process.
I aim to do plenty of 'steady' weekly miles and try hard at the weekly Parkruns to up the pace a little.
Hi Lil. yes, still running, more than ever... Slower (and once more a bit heavier than I really should be) but now doing longer distances - marathons and ultras. Haven't run a half in ages but think I'd probably be around the 2 hour mark, which isn't too bad for a fat chick. LOL!
If you just keep building up your weekly distance with steady miles you should see a gradual improvement in your times. Then once your base fitness is improved, you might even get to like interval sessions. I hate them and love them at the same time. They make me want to vomit but it's the one weekly club session I really try not to miss.
UPDATE - I did the GNR. Followed my plan and pushed myself on the day. Ended up doing 13.4 miles ! Just shows how much weaving I was doing...Well...drum roll...I got *2:30 On the nose * Very Happy..
Hi Lil - well done on the GNR! That's brilliant I entirely agree with you about speedwork - it actually makes me have to stop and be sick in the bushes if I sprint any time other than at the last 100 yards of a race! When I started running around 4 years ago (to mark my 50th birthday, so I'm no spring chicken!) my first HM was 2.38 and my husband decided he was going to take me in hand and improve my time by interval training (he usually knows what he's talking about) so I let him try. I ended up hating training runs with him and my next HM was 2.42 because I was so uncomfortable with my pacing and I was so despondent I nearly gave the whole malarkey up.
He was unable to train for a while so I did a lot of nice gentle distances on my own for a few months and my next time (my first GNR) was 2.25.... Full of the joys of having sorted *myself* out I kept plodding away enjoying my solitary distance runs and the next HM was 2.18, the next 2.11 (but it was uber flat in perfect conditions, with two big downhills!) and this year's GNR was 2.16 and not too painful at all!
Last weekend's recovery run was the fastest 6 miles I've ever done at just over 9 minute miles (not impressive compared to most of the RW forumites, I know but *I'm* proud of it haha) - I was just running for the fun of it, didn't look at my watch once until the end and was gobsmacked!
There is life without fartlek!!
Lilytoo - That's great reading. Well done on the wonderful 2:16 for this years GNR & improving your HM times. Wow, brilliant. I never thought I would/could bring my time down. Who knows, maybe next year I can get an better time.
I am very impressed with your 9mm for last weekends 6 mile run.
It has inspired me.
Thank you *
and if you could see the shape I am you'd be even more impressed haha!!! Not so much spring chicken, more plump old boiler.... Keep going - it stops hurting as much after a bit!
To be honest, my advise would be to just run and exercise, with your current times.
I got down to 1:27 HM and I hadn't even heard of intervals or tempo runs. I started out running 9 min miles and just ran and got better....I put in a lot of effort. I also did circuits and plenty of other gym classes and that seemed to work for me.