Andy Hawthorne

Andy Hawthorne

Projects, photos and running

14 Mar 2020

Why You Are the Best Person to Beat at Running

Reading time: 3 minute(s) - 500 words

Who you don’t have much talent as a runner it is hard to know how to progress. It’s simple: get better than you were last week.

We can’t all be good runners. Since pace is the factor that determines your running level.

It will leave you wondering how to set targets for yourself. 

It’s not helped when you realise that among all the local runners, you are the slowest. 

So, what is there for you?

Well, there’s a person you run with every time you go out.

There’s the person who follows you around all your favourite running routes. 

That would be you (unless you run with someone all the time). 

Here’s how it works.

1. Pick your routes

Pick your favourite routes and run them at your normal pace. Run loads of them - all the best routes you know.  

Include hills (if you can) , fast bits and harder bits.

2. Hit it

Then, run them faster.  

3. Rinse, repeat…

Next, run them all again - only faster. And if you don’t make it this time, do it again next week. 

Make no mistake, you can build an entire running history like this.

Because when you can’t beat your best time on a certain route, the training begins.

You’ll plan to run:

  • Intervals / surges 
  • Fartlek
  • Hill repeats
  • Tempo sessions

Anything to improve your pace and beat that personal record. 

While this is all happening you’ll won’t notice what other runners are doing. And that’s fine. That’s how it should be. 

The most important runner in your life is you

If you worry that you are slower than everyone else, it’ll spoil the fun. 

Focus on what you can do - bollocks to everyone else. 

Data matters

One thing I should mention this point is: you need data. Even if it’s only the distance of the route and the time you took to run it.

Stick it on a spreadsheet if you want. 

Or use your watch or phone app. But record your runs. you’ll be able to see how you progress. 

You’ll enjoy the fast ones. You’ll moan about the slower ones. 

But all the worry about being the slowest (or whatever) will fade away. 

Because your personal bests are your personal bests. And in the end, that’s all that matters.

Everyone has someone faster than them

I can’t leave this subject without pointing to a simple fact. 

That person you see out running on a regular basis. That person that always goes blitzing past you. 

Yeah, well there is someone faster than them. It might not be you. So what?

You are on the way to another PB.

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