Six Tips to Run Faster and For Longer

Running is an exercise that more and more people have started doing. Whether you do it as a hobby or to compete, you can improve your performance and get better results by following a few simple tips.
Six Tips to Run Faster and For Longer

Last update: 30 September, 2018

In the following article we’ll give you some tips, many of which elite athletes often use to help them run faster and for longer. Make the most out of your training and participate in a marathon or race with better results.

The best techniques to run faster and for longer

If you keep training but you’re not seeing any results, or if it’s becoming more and more difficult for you to finish a race, check out the following tips to help you run faster and for longer:

1. Rest

Yes! Resting is the first tip because it’s an essential technique. Adequate rest will prevent your muscles from being overloaded and help you to prevent injuries. Remember, your legs must recover from a training session for at least 24 hours after working out.

If you haven’t been able to run faster and for longer, it could be because you put too much strain on your muscles and they’re too tired.

2. Work out in intervals

Splitting the mileage you have to run is a technique that many runners use to manage long races better. It involves running in small intervals so that you don’t feel as if you’re running too much. For many people it’s a ‘mental’ technique, rather than a physical one, but it can be very useful.

Girl running in the road.

When you split the training time into warm-up, quick repetitions, recovery and cooling down, the total distance seems to be less, than you actually traveled. But, if you put it all together, you’ll see it’s exactly what you ran!

3. Include slopes

This is another trick that you can use to run faster and for longer, because it strengthens your legs and makes your workout more effective. Alternate the types of terrain that you exercise on, and include both gentle and steep slopes.

Even if you’re exercising indoors, you can incline your treadmill to achieve the same effect. This is perfect for when you can’t run outdoors because of bad weather.

4. Combine speed with strength

In addition to including slopes, we recommend that you do combined exercises and start lifting weights in the gym. This will strengthen your legs and give you more endurance.

Many runners make the mistake of just running, when they should also include other exercises in the gym, such as lifting weights and using other equipment. But if you’re not interested in this, don’t worry. There are disciplines in which you can exercise with your own body weight. Calisthenics (its official name) will give you the strength that you need to run faster, and for longer.

5. Change your pace

You surely know what your maximum and minimum running speed is. However, it’s better for you to alternate between them during training and throughout the race. Running continuously at your full potential may be harmful because you can tire easily and you won’t be able to finish the race. Sometimes it’s better to slow down and go farther.

Girl running to the sunset.

We also recommend that you change your pace according to the distance you’re running; work on ‘sprints’ that will energize your races. Fartlek, also known as speed play, is an effective training method because it prevents boredom and keeps your muscles from becoming used to a specific pace.

How is it done? You vary your running pace during a training or race. This way you can focus on intensity as well as effort and not just on the distance. Pace changes will help you to improve your personal best and give you more endurance.

6. Have a good breakfast

The last, but certainly not least, has a lot to do with nutrition. Of course, if you don’t have ‘fuel’ in your body, you won’t see results. Without a good breakfast you will struggle to run faster and for longer.

Breakfast is the most important meal of the day, no matter what time you train. Remember to include cereals, fruits and dairy products and wait for at least one hour after eating before you go running. If you work out during the afternoon, don’t eat a heavy meal beforehand. Instead, have a snack such as, an energy bar or a fruit and cereal smoothie.

If you want to run faster and for longer, keep following these tips, and you’ll see excellent results in no time.

All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.