Would Like Help to Improve 1.5 Miles Running Time

by Zee

would like help to improve my 1.5 mile time

Hello there, I came across your site while searching on tips to run faster. I am in the military and one of the components of my physical fitness test is a run of 2.4km which is 1.5 miles, whichever is convenient for you.

I love running, unfortunately, it's really hard for me to get the best timing. The best timing is 9 mins 45 seconds, which would be an amazing feat for me. My best timing was only 11 minutes flat, and right now, due to other commitments, I barely have time to run daily. I'll be lucky if my timing is even 12 minutes, which is the basic passing.

My training consists of just, running really. I just head out and run 5-9 kilometres, depending on how I feel that day. Just constant pace, nothing much, but even doing that doesn't improve my timing. Please help. If it is not too much to ask, I would be so thankful if you could create a training plan for me.

Answer by Dominique:
Hi there,
Thanks for your question about improving your running time.

I do provide full training plans customised to your specific needs which can help you improve your times. You can find more details about this service on the running coaching page.

I'll provide you with a few running tips to achieve a faster 1.5 mile:

1. Consistency is key
2. Mixing Up Your Runs
3. Increase Your Mileage Over Time

Consistency is Key

would like help to improve my 1.5 mile time
I know it is hard to fit regular running into a busy routine. But in terms of improving your running, being able to run regulatory is crucial.

Running three times per week is the absolute minimum, in my view. Being able to do more is better. But, let's first build a routine and get out there three times per week.

After all, your body needs regular practice to build up endurance and strength. If you're only running occasionally, it's tough for your body to adapt and improve.

Think of it like learning a new skill or subject in school. If you study a little bit every day, you get better over time. But if you only study once in a while, it's harder to make progress. You may get a bit of a boost at that time. But, without practice, your performance drops away again. So, try to make a running schedule where you can fit in at least three runs a week, even if they're short.

Mixing Up Your Runs

would like help to improve my 1.5 mile time
Running 5-9 kilometers (3 to 5.5 miles) at a constant pace is a fantastic starting point. It means you have a basic level of endurance already. Now, we need to add some variety to your running training.

You see, the 1.5 mile is a tricky distance. It requires good endurance and good speed. You are working on one aspect of your running with the longer, slower runs. Let's now start working on the other component. Here are some specific types of runs you can include in your training plan:

1. Interval Runs: these are short, fast runs followed by a rest or slow run. For example, run fast for one minute, then jog or walk for two minutes, and repeat several times. Interval runs are great for building speed and stamina.

2. Tempo Runs: These are runs at a steady, but challenging pace. Imagine running at a pace that’s just a bit uncomfortable, but you can maintain it for a longer period, like 15-20 minutes. This helps your body get used to running faster for longer distances.

3. Fartlek Workouts: "Fartlek" means "speed play" in Swedish. It involves mixing fast and slow running randomly. For example, you might sprint to a tree in the distance, then jog until you pass a mail box, and so on. This can be a fun way to build speed and endurance without the structured feel of other workouts.

4. Goal Pace Workouts: Practice running at the pace you need to achieve your target time of 9 minutes and 45 seconds for 1.5 miles. This might involve doing shorter distances at this pace, gradually increasing the distance as you improve, e.g. 6 x 400m at goal pace with 90-120 secs rest in between.

Increase Your Mileage Over Time

would like help to improve my 1.5 mile time
Consistenly running three times per week and adding more variety to your training will no doubt make you faster. After this, to continue improving performance, you will want to work on increasing your mileage.

Increase the length of that long run somewhat. Hitting 80-90 minutes of non-stop running, eventually, would be fantastic. Once you really have that routine going, add in another day of short, easy running. 20-30 minutes at first, then build it out to a steady 45-60 minute jog.

I have no doubts that you will be able to make significant improvements this way. Test yourself regularly, e.g. every 6 weeks or so. Progress will not always be linear and constant. But over time, you should see that 1.5 mile time get better and better.

I hope this helps, and I wish you the best of luck in your training. With dedication and variety in your workout, you will see improvements and hopefully reach your goal time. Keep up the great work!
Best of luck,

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