Tips for Running the Mile


The Mile. Its four laps. Its symmetrical. It can be incredibly fun, and torture at the same time. Whether you're running 3:43 like the gentleman below or you're running 12mins, you're still running a mile and thats impressive. I thought I'd share four tips for running the mile given that we're going to get after it at Tuesday's Speed Run.


The mile is fast. Faster than a lot of the other races you've been running. Whether it is a 5k or a half marathon neither compare to the mile. The mile is a shock to the system for folks who haven't run one in a while. It is super important to warm up properly. That includes our typical dynamic warmup plus activation drills. We'll typically use the ladder for these activation drills and there are three major benefits. 

Speed & coordination. By incorporating ladder drills into your training program, you will be promoting a wide range of different footwork and movement patterns, which can help increase stride length, speed and agility on the running track.

Cardio exercise. When done right and at a fast pace, the agility ladder can provide you with a killer cardio workout. Just keep in mind that proper form is the priority, not how hard you push yourself. If you lose form, then you are just wasting your time.

Strengthens body and mind. Ladder drills will also help you strengthen your joints, tendons, ligaments while improving focus and coordination. In fact, study has shown that agility training can improve cognitive performance, including vigilance and memory.

Below is a video of some ladder drills, we'll do a few of these before our speed sessions. 


Figuring out your pace per lap can be super helpful for running the mile. If I know I need to be at 70 seconds per lap to run a 4:40 mile I can better judge my performance throughout the mile. Did I go out too fast? Do I need to pick it up on the next lap? Being prepared is always better than winging it. Know what you need to do, visualize it, dream about it then get after it. 


The first lap is a blur. The second lap isn't too bad. The third lap is hell. The fourth lap is where you lay it all on the line. 

The first lap is blur because you're all amped up to run the mile! Stay within yourself but use that energy to get out fast and into rhythm quickly. The second lap you'll be in rhythm and probably thinking hey this isn't so bad. The key to the mile is the third lap. In my mind that is the most difficult part of the run, you're tired its easy to slack or coast that third lap to save up for the final kick. Don't do that. Stay on pace, stay focused mentally. Know that it will hurt, but know that after this there is only one lap to go and the fourth lap is where you lay it all on the line. 


Like I said earlier the mile is a shock to the system so we need to make sure we take care of ourselves after the run. Be sure to do a light jog afterward and maybe a little static stretch/foam rolling. Rehydrating afterward will help ward off cramping. Then just give yourself a little pat on the back. 

Hope this helps and we'll see you on the track! 

Eric Lonergan 

Bob BischoffComment