Qualifications: a 1.5 mile for 15:30 in Two Weeks. I'm NOT a Runner

by Belay

I'm not a runner at all and I failed a 1.5 mile run that's supposed to be done in 15:30. How do I get started? I am going to try out again in two weeks time.

I am applying to be a correctional officer and and a 1.5 mile 15:30 is a must to be employed for the state. Please help. Thank you.

running tips
Answer by Dominique:
Hi Belay,
Thanks for your question about running a 1.5 mile in 15:30.

You don't have a whole lot of time to get ready.

You need some type of crash course approach.

This is not without risks, so you do need to take care to not get injured.

Listen to your body at all times. A bit of muscle soreness is fine. Sharp pains, chest pain etc. is not.

In the short time available I would go out running 4 times per week. Given you are not a runner, you are most likely to benefit from run/walks.

I.e. rather than going out for a 10-minute run, it would be better, endurance wise, to do 5 x 4 min of running with a few minutes of walking in between.

I would concentrate two of your weekly run/walks on doing distance, i.e. with at least 20-30 minutes of running, more if you can. Just walk a bit more to get your breath back if you need to. But do run at least 20 minutes in those two runs.

And in two of your weekly runs I would concentrate on doing speed stuff, e.g. 10 x 1 min run, 1 min walk, in which the 1 min run is reasonably fast. This session should leave you exhausted by the end of the 10th interval. If you are not, then you haven't done it fast enough... :)

On the non-running days I would do some cross-training, e.g. bike, swim or so. All little bits help.

This could provide some improvement over the short time period.

If you don't make it, there is probably another opportunity to try and qualify. In that case, please continue the running. It does take some time for your fitness to improve.

Given this is important for your career, I do expect sufficient willpower to keep up the running, even if it is something you really hate doing.

Oh, do make sure you don't do any strenuous activity on the day, or the day before the 1.5 mile test. This will ensure that you come to the start rested and ready to go.

Best of luck.
Hope you make it.

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