When you run, are you running too fast or to slow? Do you feel you cannot find “your groove” and seem like your times are all over the place. When you can run within your limits, every run can be pleasurable. But if you start too fast or too slow, it can really mess up your rhythm. Here is an easy way to figure out your perfect pace.
- Run one hard mile: Use a track or measure out a mile before completing. After you warm up, run one mile hard (not all out) and time yourself. Record your time. This will give you a benchmark to determine what pace is appropriate for you at your current fitness level.
- Slow down: On your daily runs, you should run 2 to 3 minutes slower per mile per your one hard mile. You should run comfortably and be able to complete full sentences without gasping for breathes. If you notice yourself huffing and puffing, slow down.
- Setting race goals: Use your mile time to set realistic goals for your next race. Add 33 seconds to your mile time for a 5K. For a 10K, multiply your mile by 1.15, half-marathon multiple by 1.2, or for a marathon multiply by 1.3.
- Get used to it: You will need to practice once a week to get used to your race pace. Try to run your race pace for a half or three-quarter mile. Check your pace each quarter mile to adjust what you need. Then each week after that, run a little farther at race pace until you’re running one-third to one-half of the race distance.