Seasoned runners are always looking to get better. When they reach that intermediate level of running, many people hit blocks and can’t improve. It’s because they have a wrong approach and somewhat because they aren’t noticing their achievements.
Consider progression running if you’re interested in improving your results, stamina, and physical fitness. Many professional and semi-professional athletes use this training method, but casual runners who want to improve can use this method as well.
Here’s what you need to know.
Progression running explained
The progression running method involves starting slow and gradually increasing the level of intensity in your runs. Runners begin at a comfortable level and work their way up to the highest pace possible at the end.
Without putting a lot of stress on your body, this approach brings more variety, prevents injuries, and leads to better results over time. There are different types of progression running, and you can adjust the method depending on your goals.
Some people want to improve their recovery. Others look to develop endurance, speed, fitness, and so on. Runners that haven’t tried progression running will need time to get used to it but will ultimately reap many benefits.
Changing the mindset
Many people share the same problem – they are always trying to push themselves to their limits. It can work for a certain period but becomes ineffective at a certain point. You must change your mindset to make the transition successful.
Athletic performance isn’t about pushing your body to its maximum daily. It’s about consistency and getting practical training that will bring better results over time – the professionals think about the big picture, and so should you.
Instead of giving everything you got each session, adopt an optimal workload that will affect your body without putting too much stress on it. Here are the advantages of progression runs.
Benefits of progression running
Warming up properly
Having a slower pace at the start gives your muscles the time to warm up properly activate all the muscle groups so that your muscles can gradually adjust and prepare for the long run. Primed muscles give more endurance and amp up your whole body for optimal pace. The heart rate elevates slowly, increasing blood circulation, releasing energy, and giving your body the oxygen it needs.
Improved physical fitness
Progression running improves general physical fitness faster than a traditional running workout. Reaching that fast pace until the end of a session positively affects the aerobic system, shortens recovery time, and helps runners achieve a quicker pace.
Injuries are a part of any sports activity. Progression running is about listening to your body and running at a pace that won’t overwhelm you. Warming up properly and getting your body ready for that intense pace helps prevent muscle tears, tired legs, and cramps that could lead to injuries.
Different progression running approaches
As we mentioned earlier, there are many different approaches to progression running. We suggest starting with one of these three types. Remember that each athlete should define what slow, medium and fast pace mean.
Dividing the race into three quarters
Start by running slow during the first quarter, reserve the second quarter for medium speed, and make the last one fast. Runners can divide the race based on its length or the total time they plan on running.
Fast-paced last quarters
With this method, the runners should run their first three quarters at a slow pace that’s comfortable for them, and they don’t increase the rate until the last quarter. You should run fast in the final quarter without going to your absolute max.
This method is like the fast-paced last quarters but with a twist. Instead of running the final quarter fast, the runners give the last four to seven minutes of everything they’ve got.
Create a schedule and listen to your body
Focus on yourself, your body, and your time.
If you’re running three times a week, you should take things slowly overall. Your first training session should be 30 minutes, the second 40 minutes, and the third 30 minutes long. Your third day should be the back-off session that lets you put in the work without putting too much strain on your body.
An excellent option is to equip fitness trackers for checking your vitals during workouts. It gives you a chance to see how far you are pushing yourself. It will indeed show the times when you might need to slow down and take a breather.
Of course, do not forget to pair your device with a Virtual Private Network. A VPN download is one of the best ways to ensure that your health data travels online safely. Of course, you would not like someone intercepting your connections just because you joined a free Wi-Fi hotspot in a coffee shop. Protect your digital data, which might sometimes reveal many details about your personal life.
The important thing is to listen to your body. See if this schedule is too difficult for you and reduce the times if necessary. On the other hand, you can also increase volume if you feel you’re not getting enough work.
Longevity is vital in marathons and half-marathons. It’s about training safely while keeping your body rested injury-free. You can quickly see your numbers going up with progression running and consistency. Good luck!