How Fast Should I Run?

Hi I've been running for 5 weeks now properly, I'm soon the C25K challenge, one thing bothers me is the speed I run, I'm sure I run way to fast and tire myself out before I've got that far. How fast do you reckon is a normal speed for a runner to go per KM? Just need some advice. Cheers.


  • Hi George, it is so hard to say what normal is because we don't know if you're a teenager or a senior, if you're slim or have a heavy build, or if you're already fit from other sports you do. You are right, however, that when you get up to a 25K race you are likely to go out way too fast at first, unless you've done some proper pacing in your training. Hopefully you'll be working up to a training distance close to 25K before you actually run the race. If you've done proper training, you might be able to go a little bit faster on race day than in your training, just due to race day adrenelin.  For me, I can run one mile in about 6 minutes, but that pace slows down to about 7 minutes per mile over a distance of 6 miles (10K), and slows down to about 8 minutes per mile over a marathon (42K). If I started a marathon at anything faster than my marathon pace, I'd be setting myself up for a poor performance.

    One thing you can do if you're really interested to know what "normal" is: visit the website for the race you are interested in. The website should have a results section from previous years. You can then look up your own age category and see how fast and how slow people of your sex and age run that race.

    But everyone is so different at running ability, even people of the same age, that it can be risky expecting to go at the average pace of your age group. You might be better off to just follow a good training program and your running pace will emerge over time. Don't worrry too much about what pace others will run - I can almost guarantee that some will be slower and some will be faster!

    Good luck with your training.

  • George, I do 5k averaging about 4.20 mins/km. However, as bias says, everyone is different. If you can't complete the distance then you need to slow down. Once you are comfortable with the distance then worry about speed.
  • George...its impossible to answer. Get yourself a heart rate monitor to find out. New runners have a habit of going too fast.

  • booktrunkbooktrunk ✭✭✭

    I'm one of the slowies <img src='' />

    I have been running for about nine weeks I'm about 2 1/4 stone overweight and run around 8:10 per km but can push out a 7:20ish if I really want to but just for 1k

    I still start out to quick and have to force myself to slow down when doing a 8k+ jog or run.

    Oh... That's through fields (some dry, some boggy) so my average might be quicker if I was running on roads. Shows how little confidence I have adding to add this.

  • Tim R2-T2Tim R2-T2 ✭✭✭
    You're 5 weeks into the C25K or have you been running 5k for 5 weeks now? Run at conversation pace. Ie the pace you can hold a conversation at. Once you can run the whole 5k easily then gradually increase the speed.
  • Yes - Completely different for everyone. I am a 10 minute mile plodder for a 6 mile distance and about 11 minute miles for 10 mile distance. I managed roughly 9 minute miles for a 5k today so (5.5minute per k). I have been running a while but do not have long legs and enjoy plodding comfortably along.

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