Exercise Of The Week: Tempo Run With A Twist

The tempo run, in its most elementary state, is outlined as a sustained, regular effort over a set distance or predetermined size of time. It’s lengthy been a staple exercise in lots of a runner’s coaching program. Whether or not you’re coaching for a quick 5K or on the brink of race a marathon, sprinkling a tempo run or two into your coaching schedule offers you a variety of bang on your buck. And whereas the definition of a tempo run depends upon who you’re speaking to, for our functions right here, we’ll use half-marathon race tempo as our goal effort degree.

Yielding many advantages, together with elevated stamina and enhanced effectivity, the tempo run additionally helps you develop the boldness to run your objective race tempo for a chronic time frame. Races, nevertheless, aren’t at all times run at an excellent effort from begin to end, so it’s essential to apply altering gears throughout a few of your hardest coaching runs. Tempo runs with a “twist” are an efficient method to just do that.

So, what’s the twist? It’s so simple as sprinkling a brief “burst” of 30 to 60 seconds into your tempo runs each fifth or tenth minute. Such a apply will higher put together you for the trials of racing, which frequently entails altering gears, and also will assist maintain your thoughts and legs sharp when your focus begins to fade.

The Exercise


Run simply for 10 to 20 minutes, comply with with 6 x 20-second strides.


Run for 20-60 minutes (or 3-Eight miles relying in your capability/expertise degree) at your half-marathon race tempo (If you happen to don’t have a half marathon time to base this off, add 15-20-seconds per mile to your present 10Ok race tempo). Right here’s the twist: Each fifth minute throw in a 30-second “burst” at 5K-10Ok effort adopted by a direct return to half-marathon tempo. Or, for extra skilled runners, throw in a 1-minute “burst” at 5K-10Ok effort each tenth minute adopted by a direct return to half marathon tempo.


Run simply for 10-20 minutes, stretch.

Becoming Tempo Runs Into Your Coaching Schedule

Not coaching for a half marathon or marathon? Not an issue. The advantages of coaching at this tempo have been proven to learn distance runners coaching for any occasion from the 5K to the marathon. If you happen to don’t have a half marathon time to make use of as a baseline, add 15-20-seconds per mile to your present 10Ok race tempo to determine your “tempo” tempo. This comfortably difficult effort will develop your cardio system extra successfully than another kind of exercise, and has a shorter restoration time than a tough interval session or a set of killer hill repeats.

If you happen to’re coaching for shorter races reminiscent of 5K or 10Ok, carry out this exercise (purpose for 4-6 miles of operating at tempo tempo) each different week throughout the early a part of the coaching cycle. Sustaining this regular effort will do wonders for revving your cardio engine, whereas the bursts will assist you to apply surging off a gradual tempo.

For half marathoners and marathoners, tempo runs must be a staple session in your weekly coaching schedule. Alternate the “basic” model of this exercise with the “twist”, regularly growing the size of the tempo run each second or third week as your coaching progresses. Because the quantity of this kind of exercise can creep up on you rapidly, watch out to not carry out this exercise too near race day. Ten days out from a key race is loads of time to get better nicely and reap the advantages on race day.

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