5 ways to run faster this summer

From heart monitors to hill running: how you can turn the heat up your running

summer2

Have heart

“Using a heart rate monitor in training means the fitter you get, the faster and longer you have to run to get in your top training zone,” says Rebecca Cox, Reps Level 3 personal trainer. “The quicker your heart rate comes down in the rest period after high intensity, the less rest you have. Essentially, as you progress, it makes you work harder by showing you exactly what your body is capable of – so you’re not cheating yourself.”

Head for the hills

They may seem like a laborious slog but by incorporating hill runs into your training regime, you’ll improve your overall speed. A study of 10K runners published in the Journal of Strength & Conditioning revealed that the muscle development that comes from hill running helped improve finishing times. “Hills build leg and lung strength, and give you the foundation of fitness you need to get faster,” explains Lucie Noble, senior physiotherapist at London Bridge Hospital.

Arm yourself

“Focus on your arm drive when running – a strong action really helps momentum and drive,” says England rugby flanker and sprint trainer James Haskell (www.jhbodyfire.co.uk). The most important phase of the arm drive is how hard you swing them backwards. “Use your arms efficiently by driving your elbows directly behind you instead of out to the side,” he says.

Weight around

Don’t shy away from weight training for fear that ‘bulking up’ could wreck your performance. Italian research among a group of elite runners found that those who did some strength training – specifically dead lifts at a high weight (90 per cent of max) – achieved greater running economy and improved running technique when compared to a group who did numerous reps at lower weight (70 per cent of max). The scientists suggested “distance runners that lift and squat get stronger and therefore can run faster”.

Workout on flats

Doing strength drills where the foot is in contact with the ground on stable surfaces helps develop speed, as sprinting involves reaction forces against stable surfaces. “Back squats, front squats and deadlifts all fit the bill,” says James Haskell. “While exercises that involve the extension of the hip, knee and ankle all improve speed along with single-leg drills like lunges, single-leg squats and step-ups.”

Find the full list of 21 tips in the latest issue of Men’s Running

Written by Rick Pearson | 191 articles | View profile

Please comment on this article below

blog comments powered by Disqus
Up
WATCH: Sprint faster with Colin Jackson Review: Nike Free 3.0 Men’s Running tests the ElliptiGO The London Marathon Expo Men’s Running visit The Gadget Show Live Review: Reebok ZPump Fusion Men’s Running visit the Wearable Tech Show TomTom Runner Cardio Review Project 26.2 training day Mk II New Balance Fresh Foam Zante NYC review
Down

WATCH: Sprint faster with Colin Jackson

MR's Rick Pearson meets 110m hurdling world record holder Colin Jackson and finds out how to run faster

Review: Nike Free 3.0

Watch as our digital writer lists some of the key features of the refreshed range

Men’s Running tests the ElliptiGO

Men's Running tests the ElliptiGO

The London Marathon Expo

Men's Running explored the Virgin Money London Marathon Expo and spoke to a few of the runners ahead of Sunday

Men’s Running visit The Gadget Show Live

Men's Running visit The Gadget Show Live

Review: Reebok ZPump Fusion

Watch the video review of the Reebok ZPump Fusion running shoes

Men’s Running visit the Wearable Tech Show

Men's Running visit the Wearable Tech Show

TomTom Runner Cardio Review

TomTom Runner Cardio Review

Project 26.2 training day Mk II

Robbie Britton gives the guys some valuable advice

New Balance Fresh Foam Zante NYC review

These are the brand new, New Balance Fresh Foam Zante NYC