4 Sessions For Better Speed Endurance

Marathon man Steve Way reveals his 4 favourite speed endurance sessions

4 Sessions For Better Speed Endurance

Progressive tempo run – 6 to 10 miles

(For 6 miles)
Mile one slow

Mile two steady
Mile three marathon pace
Mile four half marathon pace
Miles five and six 10K pace

This is one of the simplest but most worthwhile sessions I do, that can fit into any training plan.

You can personalise the total distance and target pace to fit your own level. I often do a 10-mile run starting at an easy pace and then make each mile faster – with the aim of finishing at 10K pace.

Steve Way London Marathon Men's Running UK

Steve at the London Marathon – on his way to qualifying for the Commonwealth Games

Big Marathon Speed Session

30mins at marathon pace
3min recovery jog
5 x 4mins at threshold pace (2min jog between intervals)
30mins at marathon pace

One of the key runs I do in my biggest marathon training week is a long run incorporating 30mins at target marathon pace, followed by 5 x 4mins intervals at threshold effort, and then another 30mins at marathon pace.

It sounds daunting but hit the right effort levels and it’s suitable for anyone in their biggest training week. Separate the threshold intervals with 2min jogs and allow 3min jogs before and after the marathon pace efforts.

Add in a good warm-up and cool-down it’s a great way to make your long run go quicker!


Kenyan Hills

20mins continuous up and down

A hill session with a difference, this one. Unlike standard hill sessions, where you use the downhill part as a recovery jog, the key to this session is maintaining the same effort level throughout.

Find a runnable hill that will take you a couple of minutes to ascend. After a good warm-up, spend 20 minutes continuously running up and down the hill making sure you maintain the same effort level throughout (yes, you should be going fast downhill).

Your effort levels should be just below threshold, similar to the kind of effort you could manage in a one-hour race.

Parkrun repeats

4 x 5K (3min jog recoveries in-between)

I know what you’re thinking: that’s crazy talk. Four parkruns?! Just like any speed session, though, it’s all about getting the effort levels right and then anyone is capable.

The 5K efforts need to be done just a bit slower than half marathon pace with an easy jog in-between.

Obviously you don’t have to do them on your local parkrun course, but I like to know I’m running the correct distance and it always gets me in the right frame of mind using a course I’m used to running fast on.

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