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Glossary of Run Training Terms

Updated: Mar 21

Runners Passing Aid Station in Triathlon Race

Races are back! If the COVID-19 pandemic has taught us anything, it’s to make the most of what we can control in order to feel better about the things we can’t.

This past week has revealed to us that although there are various training styles to keep things interesting, and gradually build up your strength, speed and endurance to work towards smashing your run goals - there are basic to running and run training programs that some runners when it comes to terms - can use some help with.

So to help #levelup your run game with through a list together of some helpful run terms for our online trib.

Glossary of Run Training Terms

Fartlek: Fartleks work on speed and strength by alternating distances and paces during a continuous run. An example of a fartlek workout structure could be one minute running easy (40-50%) followed by one minute running hard (75-85%), repeated a certain amount of times or for a set number of minutes.

Tempo: Tempo is a hard but controlled pace (70-80%) that can be run as long intervals or a steady run of 1-10 miles. The purpose of a Tempo Run is to build mental and physical endurance and to become comfortable with being uncomfortable.

Hills: Hill workouts develop speed and form. It takes extra effort to run uphill so you do not need to run as fast as you would on a flat section (think 70-80% effort, not speed). While running uphill, remain in control of your breathing. Don't lean too far forward. A light lean with the chin leading the chest is enough. Uphills are a great way to develop speed and strength with minimal pounding on the legs.

Interval pace: Intervals are “hard” but not all-out running by any means (80-90%). Usually at a pace that you could maintain for about 10-15 minutes in a serious race.

Mile pace: The pace you would run if you were to run just one mile on that day (90-100% ).

Faster than mile pace: Our training intervals are almost always shorter than one mile. Boost your speed here and run these faster than your mile pace (90-100%), but again, not an all-out sprint.

Goal pace: Maybe this is not your mile pace today, but the goal mile pace you plan to run (i.e. If you are currently closer to an 8-minute mile and your goal is to run a 7:30 mile, your goal pace intervals would be at 7:30 pace). This will be run at our mile pace effort of ~90%.

Easy run: This should feel easy and you should be able to hold a conversation comfortably (40-60%).

Long run: Focus on time on your feet. Aside from the longer distance, this is much like the "easy run" and you should be able to hold a conversation comfortably (30-40%). Be sure to tag us in your run selfies on the gram @swimbikerunfun1 so we can feature you on our next highlight reel.



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