Pace versus distance

I would never have described myself as particularly athletic but last year I managed to get into running and was getting my mileage up to about 8 miles with 9-10 min miles but I broke my ankle and needed pins and plates and that stopped my running until now. Over the last 4 weeks I have started running again and I am up to 4.5 miles but as my miles increase my speed is decreasing (closer to 10 min miles) and I am wondering what's better. To not worry about pace and keep pushing for distance. I want to run a half marathon next year. I have been adding intervals into my run and a 30 min fartlek session once a week but I am just wondering what I need to concentrate on. Any advice gratefully received. Many thanks


  • Put simply... distance, distance, distance.

    When you've got lots of strength and endurance in you, then start to add the occasional bit of speed work.

    That's what you should concentrate on... but of course, you don't want to bore yourself to death... so if you want to do a bit of speed work... and you are confident that you've built some strength back up, then why not do a bit. Make sure you warm up really very very well... and cool down too.  e.g. 10-15 minutes gentle running either side of your faster stuff.

    Glad you're back into it...  good luck

  • Yes I'd echo RW. Most of my runs are about 10 minute miling in training. When I've got some miles in my legs I throw in an interval session and some speed work once a week and I always race a lot faster than my steady miles.

    Trying to do too much speed too soon is a recipe for injury.
  • stutyrstutyr ✭✭✭

    As others have said, concentrate on distance rather than speed.  With only four weeks running, just concentrate on getting back into it and steadily building the distance.

    Your previous speed will gradually return, and I wouldn't consider doing any speed work for the first six months back.

  • First of all, congratulations fo rgetting out the door again...always hard and the first few runs can be even worse, so loads of kudos for that.

    I agree take it slow increase the mileage at a sensible rate (no more than 10% a week), but maybe throw in a parkrun or two just to break things up and to show progress.  Then after 12-16 weeks start adding in some faster sections either as reps, tempo or fartlek.

    Have fun

  • Thanks for your advice. The ankle has not been a problem so far.....touch wood. Hamstrings have been a bit tight but have found some good stretches which have sorted them out. So pleased to be back into it. This time last year thought running would be out of the question for good, even contemplated selling my garmin. Glad I didn't.
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