How fast do marathon runners run

Running Training: 4 Simple Tricks That Can Dramatically Improve Your Performance

Today you are changing four small things in your running training plan, and in a few weeks you will already be reaping the first fruits?

Training tips should be simple and quick to implement.

They should be effective - regardless of your training goal.

Today I want to share a total of four surprisingly simple tips with you that I believe can keep this promise.

Jason Fitzgerald, US running coach, marathon runner and author of the book "101 Simple Ways to be a Better Runner" gave me the idea of ​​incorporating the following four training strategies into my own training.

Have fun!

Run faster # 1 | 2-3 increases per week

Increase runs: They are a matter of minutes, do not cost you any additional time during training, they are effectively and most importantly - they are really fun! So I'm all the more surprised that very few runners do them. Probably many simply do not know this simple training method.

What are progression runs?

Increases are no more and no less than 20-30 second accelerations that you carry out after your running training. They are almost universal - you can do them just about anywhere: in a parking lot, in your street, on a hiking trail, or in a meadow.

How do I carry out improvement runs?

After your regular training, you should plan 4-8 increase runs 2-3 times a week. This is an increase:

  • Start the increase at a relaxed pace and then accelerate steadily until you arrive at around 95% of your maximum pace.
  • Hold the 95% pace for 2-3 seconds.
  • Slowly brake until you come to a stop.
  • Take a break from walking or standing for 30-60 seconds before starting the next increase.

If you haven't done any increase runs so far, you should start with 4 increases and work your way up to 6-8 increase runs in a row. Increase runs are done quickly and still quite intense - at least for a few seconds. They are not difficult, but they bring speed, variety and a good fun factor to your training.

Run faster # 2 | Running strength training at all levels

If you want to run regularly, get better, and avoid injuries, strength training should be an integral part of your training routine.

What should runners consider when doing strength training?

We can move our body with our muscles in three planes, which correspond to the three possible directions of movement:

  • Back and forth
  • Left and right
  • Up and down

Running essentially takes place on the “front-back level” and is therefore very one-sided. Therefore, in strength training, it is all the more important that we include the other two levels in order to avoid one-sided overuse and to become more athletic.

Which exercises are optimal for runners?

I am a big fan of “holistic” muscle building and strength training, which includes all muscle groups equally. I am often asked which exercises are essential for running. So let's leave push-ups, pull-ups, etc. out of the way - these exercises will make you more athletic and faster in a short time:

Running training in and of itself causes muscular imbalances because it only takes place in one of the three possible planes of movement. With these and other multi-dimensional strength exercises you avoid a muscular imbalance and stay healthy and productive.

Run faster # 3 | Learn to love the negative kilometer split

“Negative kilometer split” sounds like more than it is: If you run the second half of your training faster than the first, you run a negative kilometer split. If possible, you should implement this subdivision in each of your long-distance training sessions and, of course, in competition.

Why should I run the negative kilometer split in training?

If you also split negatively in training, you gain security for the competition. So for the moment when time really matters.

What does a negative kilometer split bring me?

You set a higher training stimulus if you train yourself to go a step further in the second half of the training when you are already tired. Your body will thank you with the appropriate adaptation - and that is called aerobic endurance!

How do I best implement the negative kilometer split?

The easiest way to use this training strategy is on routes with a turning point. Training on the sports field is also ideal, as you can closely monitor every lap. If you train with a GPS watch or analyze your running route on the map in advance, you can look for a prominent point on about half of the route and use it as a guide.

Run faster # 4 | Vary your long run

Who said that long runs always have to be run at the same pace? You can get even more out of the time and distance of your long run if you vary the running terrain and pace at the end. You can get even more out of your long run with these three methods:

  • Long run with inclines: Either you run several hills on the last 3-8 kilometers or a longer incline on the last 2-3 kilometers.
  • Long run with driving game: The game can begin on the last 2-3 kilometers of your long run. How about 8 x 30 seconds at a 10 km pace with a 1-2 minute trot break in between? Or 6 x 1 minute at the planned race pace, also with a 1-2 minute trot break in between?
  • Final acceleration: Anyone who has ever trained according to Peter Greif knows this notorious part of the long run. On the last 3-8 kilometers of your long lap, you accelerate slowly and continuously until you reach your 10 km race pace. The final acceleration is definitely one of the most demanding training methods and requires a lot of training - but I can confirm from my own experience that it is very effective.

The three variants become more demanding from one to the next. Therefore, it is a good idea to start by building up inclines at the end of your long run and then working your way up with increasing fitness and experience.


The beauty often lies in the simplicity. Simple adjustments in your running training can lead to dramatic improvements.

If you give the four tuning tips presented for your training plan a chance, you may be faster, stronger and fitter in a few weeks.

And if you want more compact strategies for your running training, the e-book “101 Simple Ways to Be a Better Runner” by Jason Fitzgerald, which can be downloaded from for just under 3 euros, might be worth buying.

I am interested in your opinion: How well do you get along with the training methods presented today? Is the level too demanding or too easy for you? Do you know any other tips that you would like to share here? Write a comment.

Category: Cardio TrainingTags: Strength Training For Runners, Running Training, Workout Plan