HOW TO START TRAINING
There are three different plans here. If you are a beginner, that is to say, you haven’t been running much, then the main thing you want to do is get your running up to at least three to four days a week. The more you run, the faster you will race. This is true at all levels, assuming you keep the pace easy. Too many runners think they need to hammer each run. On the contrary, success comes from putting in about 80 per cent of your runs at a very easy, conversational pace. There’s no need to push it, except for in the workouts.
If you are a little more experienced, then you should aim for five days at first, with a couple weeks at six. You can do this. The more you run, the faster you go. If you are already running five or six days, then be consistent at six days for this little training cycle. Remember, keep your easy days really easy.
Now, the workout days should be hard. There’s one workout per week, and a couple days (depending on the level) of strides, where you do a series of short, fast runs. The strides shouldn’t tire you out; they should actually be energizing. This only works if you are running easy the rest of the time.