Running just wont improve, help!

#1
Hi guys, after some help.

I have been running for 12 months now and its not getting any easier. I seem no better now than when I started 12 months ago. Im not unfit, infact im reasonably fit. I do weights 5-6x a week different muscle groups(splits), thrown in with a bit of rowing and cycling and the odd class on a rest day. Usually spinning or boxercise.

Unfortunately I cant run further than a mile without stopping, this has been the case for 12 months now. I run a mile in 7.5 minutes and have to stop as im out of breath and legs a little fatigued. Occasionally I will run for around another minute or so beyond the mile but this is sheer will power opposed to fitness. Anyway after my mile I walk for a minute or 2 then do another mile then walk tgen finish with half a mile by which point I feel as if I've done a half marathon! First 6-7 months I put this down to being a new runner but I would really expect to see some improvement by now!

My breathings awful too and I cant seem to get a steady rythm going.

Im 5 11, 12 stone 29 years of age and a bmi of 23. Am I really this unfit??? In my teens I was a decent runner, from 14 to 20 I was regularly running 6 minute miles over 5 miles. Could do an 8.50 mile and a half best effort. Sadly due to a bad stress fracture and constant shin splints I could never shake off I quit running all together for around 6 years at the age of 22. Last year I finally cracked my injury problems but I just cant get anywhere near my old times or distances. My running is quite frankly pathetic at the moment and I need your help.
 
#2
Perhaps cross train with swimming and rowing to boost your cardio? If you are using only running to improve your cardio-vascular performance but you are shite atvrunning then your improvement in this area will be correspondingly slow.

Lots of pther advice is available on-line.
 
#3
One more thing guys. I have been treadmill running as I incorperate my runs into my gym session. If I dont run at the gym I dont really run at all. Im well aware the belt carries you and makes running far easier than reall life out door running. To compensate and to simulate reall life I run on incline of 4-4.5 percent. However I went for a road run today and it seemed much harder than my treadmill runs. Is this in my head or is treadmill running with an incline still that much easier???
 
#5
Slow down your running.

Set a distance target, say 3 miles. Try it at a 9min mile pace or slower if that's too hard.

Once you can comfortably run it, then half the runs, extend the distance by no more than 10% per week, the other half try bring the pace up, again by no more than 10%. Look out for 1/2 mile distance markers on your run and aim to get to them 10 or 20 seconds faster each week.

Best of luck
 
#6
Agree with mush_dad, try longer, slower runs to build up your endurance. 1 mile in 7.5 mins ain't that bad. How often do you run a week, maybe you should cut down on the weight training slightly and focus more on running.
 
#7
You merely lack the proper motivation. Get something frightening to chase you, Bengal tiger for example - you are bound to go faster once that adrenaline kicks in.
 
#8
The best preparation for doing something is to do it over and over again. If you want to improve your road run speed then run on the road. Gym treadmills are the curse of many an individual who preps for fitness tests only to fail in real world conditions.
 
#9
Agree with mush_dad, try longer, slower runs to build up your endurance. 1 mile in 7.5 mins ain't that bad. How often do you run a week, maybe you should cut down on the weight training slightly and focus more on running.
Have to agree, cut out some of the weights and start introducing slow runs. As said, this will increase your endurance; enabling you to run further and faster. Also you need to start doing some tempo runs or fartlek training.

Stay off of the treadmill - the only time that I use one for is for interval training if it's pissing down with rain.

Google tempo and fartlex training, and then set yourself up a sample programme to see how you get along with it. Good luck.


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#11
How's the diet? All that lifting will be caning energy! I'd give it a miss and concentrate on self-weight stuff and long, slow runs maybe take up climbing if you don't already do it, you need motivation to do this have a watch of Chris Scharma or Ron Fawcett on Youtube for strength to weight!
 
#12
how does slow down grab you, if you want to run for a long way relax look at teh view an enjoy it, try 10/11 min mile pace, you have to go slower to get faster!

enjoy
 
#13
just stay off the treadmill pal there crap and drop the weights I noticed a big difference when I started running outside and stopped lifting weights concentrate more on push ups, sit ups. I only use a treadmill to time my 1.5mile once a week:) all the best
 
#14
I would advocate intervals; about 4 x 400m, run at a pace such that the first interval is in the same time as the last one, 1:1 work:rest ratio. Work up to 8 x 400m, then increase distance. The ideal goal is 8 x 800m at a pace that is a bit quicker than your desired 1 1/2 time, with no more than 2 mins rest between reps.

Long slow runs are fine, but are ******* boring, nor do they test you in the same way that a 1 1/2 best effort will.
 
#15
Before getting MD'd I was a long distance runner and found the best way to improve my distance was too.

1. Gym session with lots of reps especially on the leg machines not a lot of treadmill or bike. After that straight into the pool for as many lengths as you can manage and try and break it each week. Try and use a float for only leg lengths for most of the swim.

2. Warm up for at least 20mins and have a decent pace as you don't want to burn out too quickly. Set yourself a goal not in time but in the distance you plan to go. When you feel its enough just reduce your pace and build it up again. Join a running club great way to run with a group.

3. This will hurt but if your near a beach with sand dunes use it. This will kill though the more you do it the more stamina you'll have on the hard flats.

When you feel your gaining some distance put on leg weights and run the same.

Good luck.

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D

Davetheclown

Guest
#16
Have a look at a guy called Rich Roll, he has written a book about his experiences as a triathlete. The shocking thing is he went from overweight alcoholic to 6 months competing in a Ironman Triathlon and doing well. He too struggled at running, the trick as others have said is to run slow, to get quicker, also there is a formula for Heartrate to maintain at a constant pace, you may have to walk to get your heart rate to target. I am shite at running but long distance I can plod and not stop. Also have a look at plyometrics (get a gym bunny with quals to show you how). Also sprinting with a float under each armpit in the pool is good, normal running position attempt to sprint to the other end. Really helps with with running, it also gives good strength.

Another thing is not do any impact every three weeks have a week off, most amateurs get an injury within the first three weeks of starting. So pick another exercise for that week.

A great tip that I have used is the Brick, Cycle to the pool hard , straight in and swim. Slow ride back. Or Run to the pool hard and swim, walk back. Or swim and run home.

Good luck.

DTC
 
#17
Slow down your running.

Set a distance target, say 3 miles. Try it at a 9min mile pace or slower if that's too hard.

Once you can comfortably run it, then half the runs, extend the distance by no more than 10% per week, the other half try bring the pace up, again by no more than 10%. Look out for 1/2 mile distance markers on your run and aim to get to them 10 or 20 seconds faster each week.

Best of luck
I agree, dont go off like a rocket, build up the pace as you go along
 
#19
Like most have said. Start slow, go for distance not speed. Also are your legs giving you trouble (eg sore calfs, sore Achilles etc etc)? If so go to a proper (not JJB'S) running shop to get your gait checked. They'll recommend what shows to buy. Then politely dip out without making a purchase and get the previous years shoe on line.

When I first started running I was struggling with 3 milers as I was wearing the wrong type of shoe and my lower legs were killing me.


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#20
Long slow distance.

I mean really slow, bimbling slow but don't stop bimbling. Get the heart and lungs in the right place over a month or so for endurance and then come back to the muscles and strength and speed, but gradually.

Leave the weights for now, build up a cardiovascular foundation and come back to them.
 

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