/ Running a mile
So I am an ultra runner (training for Ronda del cims at mo) so slow and long is my specialty.
i’m thinking of trying something different when I finish Ronda. I’m thinking of seeing how fast I can run a mile.
So what would be a good time to aim for? I’m almost 50 and best parkrun time is 22 mins on a hilly course. My background is fell running and mountainous ultras. Also how do you train to run a mile fast? Do the obvious or more scientific?
Just google "mile training" and you can take your pick.
To spur you on: the world record for M50 is 3:58, run by a Brit in 1968 (!)
Runners world has an online calculator here https://www.runnersworld.com/uk/training/a761681/rws-race-time-predictor/ to predict the time one would take for any distance, based on time achieved at another. The formula isn't just proportional and allows for a faster pace at shorter distances.
Based on your 22 mins for 5k, it suggests 6mins 37 as the equivalent effort/achievement for a mile so I'd suggest beating that would be a good starting objective.
My mile time for a 23min 5k time was just a touch over 6mins. Be prepared for it to really hurt for about 4mins.
A while back I wondered if it would be possible for me to do a 4-minute mile down a perfect-gradient road, but after finding one and absolutely hammering down it for less than half a mile, Strava told me my speed wasn't even close.
Full respect for those able to get under 4 minutes on the flat.
Sub-6 would be a good target. Training wise keep doing your long steady runs but swap in one interval session, 800m, 1000m or 1200m reps with 60-90s recovery
Do reps with other peolple. Just don't do too much too quickly.
Not sure your figure is right - it’s 1500 metres, I think - and 1968 is the guy’s birthdate rather than the date of the run.
Judging by that table mind Bernard Lagat’s going to rewrite the thing if he keeps going!
The M50 mile record actually looks pretty soft, Lagat would probably beat it comfortably if he is still running in 5 and a half years time.
To the OP: You need to introduce sets of shorter efforts in to your training, things like 3 x 4x400m, 6x800m and 400/800/1200/800/400. I run 5k between 18 and 19 minutes, a single mile in between 5:20 and 5:30. If I dedicated my training to running fast miles, I could get a lot closer to 5 minutes, but probably not break it. I’m the same age as Bernard Lagat.
sounds like a very unhealthy goal, stick to ultra distances, maximal effort sprints are not good for the body
> To spur you on: the world record for M50 is 3:58, run by a Brit in 1968 (!)
I'm intrigued by this, as in the 1990s, I can remember John Walker, the 1976 1500m Olympic champion saying that he was aiming to be the 1st runner over 40 to run a sub 4 minute mile; he didn't achieve it due to injuries.
Well I came to running in my early 40s, now 49, My best park run time is around 18min30sec. A sub 6min mile feels challenging. I do lots of intervals, hill sprints etc, not fun except in a masochist sort of way, but if you do ultras maybe that' might appeal to you?
It’s wrong. The M50 record is something like 4:19. The M50 1,500m record is 3:58 and that was set by someone born in 1965
> Well I came to running in my early 40s, now 49, My best park run time is around 18min30sec. A sub 6min mile feels challenging. I do lots of intervals, hill sprints etc, not fun except in a masochist sort of way, but if you do ultras maybe that' might appeal to you?
Wow, great parkrun time. My best 5k is 19:30, but I have run a mile in 5:59 as part of a 3 x 1 mile interval session (the other two were 6:08 and 6:12 I think). If the OPs best 5K is 22 mins then I agree that sub-6 would be challenging. If I was the OP, I'd start with aiming for a sub 6:30 mile following the advice above from others. Then look at getting a 5k time nearer to 20 mins (sub 21). If they enjoy the process move on from there to a sub 20 5K and sub 6 mile
My only ever sub 6 mile was on such a course, when I was 52, in the Dolomites, as it happens. If I'd gone any faster I would have fallen over. I am in awe of those who run sub 5 miles at the back end of a marathon and make it look easy.
Thanks, I had my son to try and catch (failed big time)!
Thanks everyone assuming i’m In one piece after Ronda I’m gonna aim for sub 6 mins by Christmas.
the challenge is on. Anyone else want to aim for a mile time by Christmas?
Good challenge! I reckon this is well within your scope.
After reading your post I was curious to check my own records.
My mile PB is 5.42 which set on an unpaved surface during 2k interval training.
My Park run PB is 20.58 (it’s a tough hilly, off road one). My 10k is 42.26 on the road.
I’m 45 years old and carrying 86kg so I’m million miles from prime condition.
I did a 5min mile on a treadmill once whilst staying at hotel during a training course. The noise was appalling and I was a little embarrassed. It was not easy.
Lots of fun running a mile compared to longer races. Did the meteor mile at Gloucester Airport last year. Such a good race esp considering how short it was and a great medal too. Have fun.
Thanks to all my correctors, I was of course doubly wrong! (one beer too many )
Have fun. Running a mile hurts
Used to run a mile on a track occasionally just to see how fast I could do (and to be sure I'd got the distance correct - 4 laps + 9 metres).
My best in my late thirties was 5:37 (not sure I could even beat 7:00 now) around the time that I managed to beat the hour and a half for a half marathon (13 miles now, ha, ha).
Doing a mile at pace hurts, really hurts.
Two things, one is at 50 you won't have the same potential for speed that you would have had at 30, but two, you can train for speed/endurance so a PB may still be available if you ran nowhere near your potential when you were 30
Good luck - enjoy!!!
Hi Mike - long time no see! I have a late-30s mile pb of 5:20, at a time when I had 83 mins for a half and 2h 54m for a full marathon. These times all equate to about 71% age-grade. Last week's parkrun of 24:35 equates to just over 70%, at age 68. The equivalent mile time would be 7:05, apparently. I use the WMA age-grading calculator available online, this was last updated with 2015 standards recently (but parkrun have stuck with the 2010 version, which greatly favours older women and means my missus is currently a better runner than I ever was...). At least I can console myself that I am following an accepted degradation of performance with age - and 2 hip replacements have not exactly helped!
Hi Pete, was that 2:54 when you won that London entry (at the club dinner?) and pissed off all the "proper" runners in the Bowline by running it faster than they had?
Well done on keeping going post hip replacement.
No, that was 1987 when I just scraped 2:59:21 by my watch but 3 mins slower officially. PB came from 1989 (30 years ago, for heaven's sake) a week after I got married...
So did a mile today- end of my 5 mile run. 6mins 5 secs but downhill all the way so bit of a cheat but at least 6 mins doesn’t feel bonkers
Is this true? I just tried to look online but couldn't find any information on it!
No! (read the thread! )
> Thanks everyone assuming i’m In one piece after Ronda I’m gonna aim for sub 6 mins by Christmas.
> the challenge is on. Anyone else want to aim for a mile time by Christmas?
I'd be tempted - I was looking at doing a mile race in Leeds some time in autumn - but an interval session on monday (8x1k @ 3:45-3:30km pace) buggerd my foot - had an x-ray today and no sign of a fractured metatarsal but still can't walk properly. I am a v40 fell/ultra runner too - Done my BGR, TDS, 100 miler etc. so speed not my forte either really, but I'd be looking for sub-5min (whilst training for a possible mid-winter BG).
So first run post Ronda this week, on hols in France so hot. Did 4 miles on the flat road and mile 3 was a timed mile - 7 minutes!!!
I’ve got a 5K time of 20:45, half marathon of 1:39 (so I think slightly better at shorter distances) and my mile is dead on 6 mins.
I’m a 29 f though and I find men to be a bit faster than me on short intervals but I can beat them on 5K!
My fastest (hilly!) 5k is nearly to the second, my fastest mile is 6:06 though so I think faster than 6:37 should be possible.
I agree that max effort sprints make people injury prone but you have to do intervals to get faster. I’d suggest progressive intervals starting really short, maybe even 60meters. Find the pace you want to achieve and do intervals at that pace, increase interval lengths and reduce recovery times accordingly.
Seb Coes coach was his Dad who was an engineer so learn your numbers and do the maths.
Eg Roger Bannister worked towards 400mtrs in a minute then 4 intervals of one lap.
I would recommend developing hip and leg strengthening exercises eg. Banded single leg lifts, psoas slides, FMS Stretching of the hip flexors etc if you don’t want a lower back problem.
Roger Bannister didn’t train volume apparently but I think it helps.
Anyway be careful, you only have one back and it can take a loooooong time to recover!
Its great running quick though so enjoy 😁 and good luck 👦🏼
Have you got some light shoes to do this. Spikes might be a bit extreme but very cushioned road shoes on a track will be a p.i.t.a. and not fast.
Bannister also did two mile efforts to try to build stamina. But generally he was very focused on intervals , being guided by Franz Stampfl.
Lake District-based runner Kim Collison has set a new speed record on the Bob Graham Round in winter. Kim completed the round in just 15 hours 47 minutes, knocking a big chunk from the previous fastest winter time of 18:18 set by Jim Mann in 2013.