How Can I Improve My 5 Mile Time?

by Amber

I am a 25-year-old female running a 7 minute mile for 5 miles. My time is between 33 to 35 minutes. My question is how can I run a 6 minute mile for 5 miles? What would help me decrease my time and increase my endurance?

I run 5 miles every single day as well as 30 minutes of strength training which includes core work too. This is a personal goal of mine and I know I can do it! Thanks for your advice!

how can i improve my 5 mile time?

Answer by Dominique:

Hi there,
Thank you for reaching out and sharing your ambition to improve your 5-mile time. You're already off to an impressive start, running a 7-minute mile for 5 miles. With the right training techniques, I believe you can definitely reach your target of a 6-minute mile. Let's explore some effective strategies to decrease your time and boost your endurance.

These strategies are:

1. Training smart, not racing.
2. Embrace variation in your workouts.
3. Incorporate speed workouts.
4. Strength training and core work
5. Mind your recovery

Training Smart, Not Racing

how can i improve my 5 mile time?
While running your 5 miles as fast as you can every day might seem tempting, it's not the most optimal approach for improvement. Instead, focus on incorporating different types of runs into your routine. This variation will not only make your training more enjoyable but also help prevent burnout and injuries. Consider alternating between easy runs and more challenging workouts.

Embrace Variation in Your Workouts

You already have an impressive base of running 35 miles per week, but adding more variety to your workouts can take your performance to the next level.

Gradually increase your mileage to build endurance and prepare yourself for longer and faster runs. Remember the importance of gradual progression to avoid injury. Including a clear long run once a week can work wonders for your endurance. Run these at an easy conversational pace and gradually extend the duration. Check out the base running page for more info about the importance of easy running.

Incorporate Speed Workouts

To improve your running speed, it's essential to incorporate faster workouts into your training routine. Interval training, tempo runs, and hill repeats are excellent ways to build speed and strength. These workouts challenge your body and help you develop the necessary skills to maintain a faster pace.

Check out these pages for more information about each of these types of runs:

Interval Running

Tempo Running

Hill Running

how can i improve my 5 mile time?

Strength Training and Core Work

Kudos to you for including strength training and core work in your routine! This is so important. It helps with building muscle, improving running form, and reducing the risk of injury. I am sure you are doing this, but be sure to focus on lower-body exercises such as squats and lunges to strengthen your running muscles. Keep up the core work for improved stability, posture and to improve your running economy.

Mind Your Recovery

how can i improve my 5 mile time?

While pushing yourself is important, rest and recovery are equally crucial. Adhering to the hard/easy principle can help minimize the risk of injury. After intense workouts or challenging runs, make sure to give your body time to recover. Prioritize adequate sleep, maintain a healthy diet, and schedule rest or recovery days to allow your muscles to repair and grow stronger.

Remember, the road to improvement takes time and consistency. You have got a fantastic routine going already. By incorporating these strategies into your routine and staying dedicated, there's no doubt in my mind that you'll achieve your goal of running a 30-minute 5-miler within the next 12 months, and possibly even sooner. Believe in yourself and keep up the fantastic work!

Best of luck on your journey!

Kind regards,

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