Hit Your Top Speed
Having good stamina will get you a long way – but it won’t get you there any faster. To slash your run times this year, you need to start training for power. Follow our cheat sheet to accelerate your progress before the week is out
RUNNING ISN’T JUST an endurance sport. Sure, an element of stamina and fortitude will stand you in good stead, but there’s a lot more to it than that. “Too many people believe that cardio is the only training they need to do to beat their time,” says Courtney Fearon, a Nike coach and instructor at the gym BXR. “But if you focus on getting stronger and developing power, the distance will quickly feel easier.”
This is particularly true for a 10K – the most popular race distance and the smartest marker of your ability. Excelling at this distance will both sharpen your acceleration over shorter races and prime your lungs and muscles for harder runs. That preparing for it won’t take up all your free time (as with marathon training) is just a bonus.
As a starting point, Fearon recommends building your hip drive with weighted fullbody exercises such as squat presses and deadlifts. “These should be a staple of any training program, but they are especially important for runners,” he says. Bulk won’t hold you back, so opt for heavier weights and perform sets of four to six reps.
For some, however, the biggest wall to smash through is the one in their minds. You won’t go faster if you don’t believe your body is capable of it. “When I used to sprint professionally, I did a lot of downhill sprints,” says Fearon. “With gravity supporting you, you’re not exerting much force – so your foot turnover is higher. It forms a crucial body-mind connection, tricking your body into thinking you can run at that intensity and move that quickly.” Let’s see what a little self-belief can do.
RUN 10K IN JUST 40 MINUTES!