Do you run all your runs at the same pace? Ideally you want to be running your training runs at varied paces. Today I'd like to talk about different types of runs.

Stephanieruns Fitness

December 9, 2018 Newsletter

Running at Different Paces

Something I see all the time is runners running the same pace for all their runs and/or the same distances. To grow and improve as a runner you need to be running your training runs at varied paces and distances. Each run in your training plan has a purpose. If you're running the same pace and distance every time you run you aren't able to efficiently improve as a runner. Running different paces will help you become a faster runner. Runners are  always looking to improve our running speed. Running different paces will also help us learn how to pace. When we line up at the start line on race day we have a plan we want to execute, knowing how to pace ourselves can help ensure we reach our goal. Pacing is something you need to practice in order to master.

Your training plan should be just that, yours! It should be individual and work for you and your goals. However one thing that all training plans should have in common is different types of runs. The different types of runs that you place into your training plan depends on what you're training for and what your goal is. I find that runners often have questions about types of runs so I thought it would be helpful to go over some of the common types of runs.

1) The Long Run: This run should be slow and comfortable. If you were running with a friend you would be able to talk if you wanted to. How slow should your long run be? I'd aim for at least a minute, even two slower than your tempo pace. Your long run pace will also vary based on the weather. The key is to not worry about speed and to run a comfortable slow pace. Enjoy the scenery!

2) The Easy Run: This run is meant to be no pressure and you don't need worry about your time. This is usually used as a recovery run or even a shake out run before a race. You should run this one by feel.

3) The Tempo Run: This is one of my favourites. Your tempo pace is generally considered your 10k race pace or the pace you would race 1 hour for. This is a great way to practice both speed and pacing.

4) Fartlek: This just means speed play. There's really no right or wrong way to fartlek. You add in intervals of speed at any intensity or duration. This is a no pressure way to add in some speed work and pacing practice.

5) Progression Run: This is where you start slow and at a set time or distance interval you increase your pace. You start slow and finish fast. This is a great run to practice pacing and a negative split race strategy. 

6) Track Workouts: Track workouts are known as speed workouts. This is where you'll be doing set intervals, eg) 400m fast or at a set pace. Track workouts are great for speed work but aren't the only way to work on speed.

7) Hill Repeats: This is where you'll run to a hill and do a set number of repeats quickly up the hill. Once you get the the top of the hill you walk down to the bottom and turn around and run right back up. Hill repeats are fantastic but remember they don't replace strength training.

I often get asked about running strides. There's a lot of confusion around strides. Running strides are a running drill to help you improve your form and mechanics. You can use strides as part of a warm up, as a running drill or even as a speed workout, especially if you're new to speed work. So how do you stride? The goal is to increase your stride length while keeping a quick feet turnover. Start easy, then focus on a short quick stride while you are lengthening your stride. It should be a controlled but quick pace not a sprint. Next you shorten your stride as you transition into a walk. It could look like this 5-10 seconds easy, 15 second quick controlled stride, 5 seconds decelerating until you get to a walk to recover before starting again. Remember to keep your torso upright and relaxed. While strides made sound difficult I encourage you to give them a go. Try adding strides into your training run.

I hope this helps give you a better idea of different types of runs you can add into your training plan. The main thing I want you to take away from this is that you need to be running different paces and different distances. This will help you grow as a runner.

Weekly Challenge: Pace Play

This week I'm giving you a running challenge. I want you to practice running different paces. Running different paces will help you grow as a runner. Don't get too comfortable running one pace, it's important to switch up your paces.

This week I'm challenging you to fartlek. Fartlek means speed play. Take one of your scheduled runs and add in different intervals of varying paces. Remember there are no rules when you fartlek you can actually go out and just run with no pressure. Just remember to add in some pace/speed play. You could even add in some strides! If you're new at adding in speed work try 30-60 seconds fast with two to three minutes of recovery in between intervals. There's no right or wrong. Let me know what you do!

Make sure you do a solid warm up before you start this run and a long cool down after. Hopefully after this you'll add more speed play into your training plan. It'll help improve your running. I promise!

Send me a tweet @srunsfitness and let me know how this goes!

Running Strategy Session Giveaway Winner!

Thanks for all of your entries this past week! I wish I was able to give you all running strategy sessions. I've heard from you that you want to improve your running and strength training but you need the knowledge and tools to make that happen. That's exactly why I created running strategy sessions. They won't create a running or strength training plan for you but it will help give you knowledge and recommendations to improve your training.

Again thanks for all of your entries! The winner is Tony. I'll be sending you an e-mail this coming week with the next steps. If you didn't win but would still like a running strategy session or would like to gift one to a friend I have  special offer.

The usual price for a running strategy session is $99 USD. I'm offering running strategy sessions for my newsletter subscribers or you can give one to a friend for $75 USD. Send me an e-mail at to get started! I would love to help you with your training!

If you're looking for a strength training plan geared for runners check out my Training Peak's store. I currently have a new plan on sale focusing on improving speed and strength while maintaining a 10k running base.

If you found this helpful please share this newsletter and encourage your friends to subscribe

If you're looking for help with your running and strength training I am available. Send me an e-mail at for more details and to see if I'd be a good fit for your training.


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Stephanieruns Fitness

461 North Service Rd West
Oakville Ontario,  L6M 2V5 - Canada

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Disclaimer: Always seek medical advice before starting an exercise program. This newsletter is not medical advice. Medical advice should be sought from a medical professional. Stephanieruns Fitness assumes no liability for any injuries or damages as a result of the above content.