Running Top-10 — #9

Are you looking to become a better runner in 2018? If so, I believe that I can help and my Running-Top 10 list is a great place to start if you want to become a better runner in 2018!

Throughout this list we’ve talked a lot about the big, general things in running that I believe are the most important…things such as running more, and focusing on aerobic strength with long runs and progression runs, and stuff like keeping speed in your training with hills and strides.

But today, I want to talk about getting specific…Tip #9 is getting specific with your training.

What does that mean?

Well, I believe that at a minimum, the first half of your training cycle or training build up for a goal race should focus on the general stuff mentioned above…basically the getting into shape phase, or the base.

But once you’ve established a good base I believe it’s time to gear your training to meet the specific demands of your goal race.

Now, doing any specific work before the proper base of fitness is built will do you no good; in fact, it will do you more harm than good in my opinion. So, be careful to not start the specific work too soon.

But what is the specific work?

Simply workouts that aim to prepare you for your goal race. So, if you are training for a 5km, it might be something like 5 x 1000 meters at your goal pace with an equal time rest.

So, for a guy trying to run a time of 15:00 for the 5km, that would look like this:

5 x 1000 meters in 3:00 with a 3:00 rest period. 

Now, this is a pretty fast example, but just wanted to use easy math here!

And as the race distances and demands change, so would the specific workouts. You would not use this workout listed above if you were preparing for a marathon, right?

I think the specific work is where a seasoned coach really comes in handy.

Here are a few of my favorite specific sessions for the 5km, 10km, half marathon, and marathon.

5km — 5 x 1000 meters at goal pace w/ equal time rest. 
10km — 10 x 1000 meters at goal pace w/ two-thirds time rest. 
Half Marathon — 3 x 3 miles at goal pace w/ 1-mile float rest.
Marathon — 10 miles easy + 10 miles at goal marathon pace.  

If you’ve got any questions, or are looking for a seasoned coach to help you with this specific work please email me at

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