Saucony Ambassador and GB distance athlete Charlotte Arter shares her best advice on improving your 5k running.
To celebrate the launch of the new Endorphin Pro the 15:39 speedster sent across three tips. They cover pacing, training and form and might help with the next virtual event or, one day soon hopefully, parkrun.
Pacing for a PB
“Find out the pacing strategy that works for you,” starts the Welsh ace. “This might be setting off at a pace you think you can hold for a whole parkrun.
It could be going off slightly quicker and seeing if you can holdout for the distance or setting off steady so you can pick up the pace in the second half.”
With her parkrun world record Arter knows about racing 5km. “Either way, mix it up and see what works for you. Experiment.”
If you have gone off a little fast then what should you do? “It helps to focus on people who are 20-30m in front of you as targets. Once you reach them you set another target.”
Probably a little difficult for the Saucony star as there isn’t often many people in front of her.
Form and technique
“When things start getting tough during the 5km, usually the last 1-2km, try and keep as good as form and technique as you can.”
“The more efficient you can be, the faster you will run.” Seems simple. “So concentrate on moving your arms to help propel you forward and focus on your leg speed.”
The Cardiff AC runner adds that “if you find your breathing is getting out of control, try counting your steps to 30 and repeat this to help control your breathing and get into a rhythm.
Speed work for the win
What about training? If you’re new to 5k then it’s possible that adding a bit more easy running to your week, building consistency, will help you see some improvements.
After that you could think about adding some speed work in. “Try adding one faster session in a week” is the place Arter says to start.
“This could be 10 x 1 min (1min recovery) or hill sprints (something like 10 x 45 seconds with a jog back down).”
“This not only adds variety to your training but also will help improve your parkrun time over time.”
Set some goals
“This can be short term and long term” shares the Welsh international. “It always helps to have something tangible to work to. Once you meet your goal of running for a longer period of time without walking and then eventually running a 5K distance without stopping, your next target can be improving on your time for the 5K.
“The main thing is not to rush the timeframe of your goals and to always look back on what you have achieved, big or small, they are all achievements!”
Nothing comes for free in this world, so this these wonderful tips come as part of a press release for the new carbon plated Saucony shoe. Another fancy shoe that makes you faster, but always best to train hard and wear fancy shoes.
To celebrate the launch of the Saucony Endorphin Collection there’s a competition on Strava. If you run a 2020 5k PB in the next three weeks you can enter for a chance to win all three pairs of the all-new Endorphin Collection — Speed, Shift and Pro — shoes engineered by athletes and made for the everyday runner.
The ‘You, But Faster’ with Saucony Strava Challenge will take place between the 29th June- 19th July. To find out more please pop along here.
Want to run faster? For just £30 per month athletes are provided with a Final Surge plan for each day of the week, coaching advice from Robbie Britton and Tom Craggs, as well as access to the unique Fast Running Performance community.
If you would like more information on joining the project, click here.