Slow and steady really is best

Let me post my first of probably many many running stats:

500 meter sprints:

09/04       22/04
1: 2.45 2.36
2: 2.41 2.34
3: 2.40 2.35
4: 2.50 2.45

An average of 6 seconds faster per sprint! To some that might not mean anything, but to me it’s a great achievement. Over the past two weeks I have not focused my efforts on running, I haven’t set out to get faster and it was by pure coincidence that I decided to do these sprint sessions two weeks apart.

Over the past two weeks I have mainly been going to the gym, trying out (and loving) hot yoga, and training my mum up to be able to run 5km. Her pace is somewhat slower than mine and we walk portions of the 5km route. At no point during these two weeks have I gone out and run at my pace.

And yet, I managed to beat my sprints! This just goes to show that slow running (aka slower than race pace) does not mean you aren’t improving. I googled a little bit about slow running when I was stepping up my training before I deferred my marathon place but I don’t think I ever saw the benefits of the method – until now. Here are a few other benefits:

  • It’s good active recovery. Meaning it helps your legs to recover by facilitating blood flow to damaged muscles.
  • It builds aerobic fitness, endurance, and fat-burning capacity.
  • It’s a way to build mileage in your training without putting your body under too much wear and tear. (The theory is, run slower = able to run further).

I will definitely be building some easy runs into my plan when I step up my training from now on!

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