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8 Basic Types Of Runs That Will Help You Get More Out Of Your Miles


8 Basic Types Of Runs That Will Help You Get More Out Of Your Miles

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8 Basic Types Of Runs That Will Help You Get More Out Of Your Miles

As I prepare for my run with my trusty sneakers on and my favorite playlist queued, I face a crucial decision: What kind of run do I embark on today? Usually, I find myself torn between meditative runs (to disconnect and just go with the flow), speedy runs (pushing my limits in terms of speed and endurance), and let’s-make-this-quick runs (for those days when the motivation is lacking).

However, if I truly want to maximize the benefits of my runs, I’ve recently discovered that opting for one of the eight official types of runs is the way to go. These include base runs, recovery runs, long runs, tempo runs, interval runs, fartleks, hill repeats, and progression runs. Each type serves a unique purpose and offers its own set of advantages.

In order to provide a comprehensive overview of the eight types of runs, we sought insights from running experts. Let’s dive into the details!

What to know before trying any of the eight types of runs

Whether you’re training for a marathon or simply running for fitness, incorporating different types of runs into your routine is crucial for achieving your goals. According to Nadia Ruiz, an experienced endurance coach, it is essential to vary your runs to improve speed, endurance, and strength. Understanding the nuances of each type will ensure that you make the most of every run.

Sashea Lawson, a seasoned marathoner and Olympic distance triathlete, emphasizes that the benefits of diverse runs are not exclusive to those training for races. Regardless of your running objectives or experience level, tailoring your approach to incorporate various types of runs is key. Ruiz highlights that the nature of each run should be challenging yet manageable, customized to your individual capabilities.

Two running experts break down the 8 types of runs

1. Base run

What it is: Considered the foundation of your running program, a base run is the fundamental mileage that you can comfortably sustain on a regular basis.

The benefits: Base runs enhance your aerobic capacity, aiding in better oxygen utilization during running.

How to do it: Begin with a mileage and intensity level that feels easy and gradually increase as needed, ensuring a pace that allows for conversational breathing.

2. Recovery run

What it is: Recovery runs are performed at an easy pace to facilitate post-workout rejuvenation and improved blood circulation.

The benefits: These runs aid in recovery, minimizing the risk of injuries and optimizing training benefits.

How to do it: Keep recovery runs short and avoid challenging terrain or extreme conditions.

3. Long run

What it is: The longest run of your week, tailored to your training goals and fitness level.

The benefits: Long runs enhance endurance, strengthen the heart, and simulate race conditions for preparation.

How to do it: Long runs are typically performed once a week, progressively increasing in distance to align with race preparation.

4. Tempo run

What it is: Tempo runs involve maintaining a pace slightly above your comfort threshold for a specified duration.

The benefits: These runs challenge cardiorespiratory systems, expand endurance capacities, and facilitate adaptation to faster running speeds.

How to do it: Maintain a challenging yet sustainable pace, ensuring a cooldown period post-run to aid recovery.

5. Interval run

What it is: Interval runs consist of alternating fast-paced segments with recovery periods to enhance speed and form.

The benefits: This type of training boosts speed, form, and overall running efficiency.

How to do it: Begin with shorter intervals at higher speeds, gradually increasing durations to accommodate faster paces, and prioritize recovery between intervals.

6. Fartlek

What it is: Known as “speed play,” fartlek runs involve varied pacing within a single session, allowing for flexibility in intensity and duration.

The benefits: Fartleks improve speed, making them ideal for beginners due to customizable pacing options.

How to do it: Incorporate fartleks throughout your training schedule, mixing intervals of varying speeds to challenge your running capabilities.

7. Hill repeats

What it is: Hill repeats entail running uphill at a vigorous pace, followed by recovery periods, to enhance leg strength and fitness levels.

The benefits: Hill repeats boost leg strength, running efficiency, and performance on inclines or flat terrains.

How to do it: Set goals for hill intervals, gradually increasing intensity and duration, and include recovery runs post-hill repeats to aid in muscle recovery.

8. Progression run

What it is: Progression runs involve starting at a slower pace and gradually increasing speed throughout the run.

The benefits: These runs improve stamina and the ability to finish races strong.

How to do it: Increase your pace gradually by mile or time segments during the run, adapting the progression to suit your individual capabilities.

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