How to Improve My Running

by Jamie Chandler
(Alpharetta, GA, USA)

This next fall will be my last season of High School Cross-Country. I have been on Varsity the past two years, but this past season, my P.R. fell from a 20:11 5K to a 20:30. I was very upset but am now determined to break 20 minutes this next season. I know that this summer I need to train hard and prepare my body, but I am unsure how I should go about it.

My track season is almost over and then I will take a break, but after this I will have about 13 weeks. Basically, I want to get faster but not get injured.

If you have any suggestions, that would be AWESOME!

Answer by Dominique:

Jamie, thanks for your question.
The key to improvement lies in your base. You need to build your base to become a stronger runner. Therefore, in the off-season do lots of miles. But do them slow. All of your running should be easy running.

A very good guide to establishing your base is the train of thoughts from Hadd, a running trainer who first published these thoughts on a running forum. For convenience I put this stuff together in an e-book. If you subscribe to my newsletter you get the e-book for free.

It is quite an entertaining read and definitely worth it if you need to build that running base.

Keep in mind though that you can't just build up mileage without sense, build it up slowly and safely.

Good luck, stay injury-free and I hope you break 20 minutes next season!


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