12:25 PM

To Become a Faster Runner, You Need To Slow Down. Here’s Why—And How To Actually Do It

Well+Good discusses the benefits of slow running according to experts including Kaitlin Baird, MA, ACSM-CEP, CSCS, exercise physiologist at HSS. 

Allowing your body time to recover so you can run faster on runs that are meant to be fast is just one of the many purposes of slow runs. “A lot of the benefits that are going to make you a good runner are achieved through lower intensity running,” said Baird. She suggested thinking of running fast and running slow as different gears, each of which require your body to produce energy in a different way. If you only ever run fast, “you’re mostly going to be training adaptations associated with the high gear,” even though those low-gear adaptations are essential for distances from 5Ks to marathons.

Running in your low gear, or in your heart rate zones one and two, “is going to help you build resilience in your tissues on the biomechanical level,” explained Baird, “and help your body learn how to metabolize fat, and work in the aerobic training zone, which helps build out your cardiovascular system.”

And without layering in those slow runs, said Baird, we run the risk of overtraining and getting injured. While running fast all the time may result in temporary gains, she says, it will likely eventually lead to decreased performance.

Read the full article at wellandgood.com