Take advice from some of the sport’s best coaches on how you can shake up your training for a faster run split next race.
1) Practice race skills in a group:
Sure, you know that group training helps push the pace. But it also helps your race skills. Part of the skill of racing is being able to manage yourself well in an environment around others, with changes of pace and positioning, where decisions have to be made. You can learn how to get the most out of your performance in those environments—both physically and mentally.
2) Try speed work at night:
If you’re typically a morning runner, switch to the evening for your next high-intensity workout. Why? Because psychologically when you’re running at night you feel better. The darkness seems to re-galvanise you a little bit better, the wind goes a little bit more in the hair, and then you’re going faster.
3) Cover the data at least once a week:
Devices may be holding people back. Instead of giving a specific interval or heart rate, focus on just running fast and analyse the data afterward.
4) Think form to go fast:
Instead of getting discouraged when someone passes you in a race—which will likely make you run slower—focus on a few specifics about your form. You’ve got to focus on the things that make you run fast. What are your arms doing? Are you breathing well? Are you running heel-toe, or are you running mid-foot or whatever technical thing the coach has said in training? Are you drinking appropriately?