I am not getting any faster


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I'm in a bit of a grumpy mood today so forgive the uncharacteristic pessimism....but I'm not getting any faster!

I've been training hard for 9 weeks now. Two weeks (mid-way through) were rubbish due to sickness, but the other seven have been solid. I've upped my mileage by roughly 10 miles/week over this period so my recent four week's miles have been 35 instead of 25 miles. That's a lot for me. I've done hill repeats every week, I've done intervals every week (by effort, rather than pace because it's hilly here). Today I went out for an easy 3 and I managed 10 minute miles which is exactly what i was doing before I started putting this work in.

Am I fooling myself that I'll get any faster? I'm 43, hardly a spring chicken any more.

Is there a point in the training cycle where those heavy legs disappear and things start to feel comfortable and fast? Because I'm not hitting it yet.


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Are you following a training plan?


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The 'received wisdom' is that you 'test' your pace at the end of an easy week - generally 3 weeks hard, 1 week easy is a sensible cycle. It definitely varies from person to person and I find I get slower and slower through hard training and then pick up again after some 'easy' days.

Also, 'test' runs are usually done at a high level of effort - I'm not sure how representative 'easy' runs are.

Its also worth keeping a training diary of some sort that includes how you felt during each run (particularly if it felt particularly good or bad) then you can build up a picture of how quickly you are recovering from blocks of hard training.

There definitely is evidence of a decline over 40 but unless you were already training optimally then you ought to be able to find some gains over the course of a season.

For what its worth I did a test effort on the bike straight after a hard block followed by a week's holiday and was expecting a superb result; in reality I put out loads of effort in the first half, my HR went 'into the red' and I pretty much plodded through the last half giving my worst test result for a long while - 3 weeks later with only 2 easy days before it (instead of a whole week) I got a 'normal' test result again... Some times you just have to accept that it wasn't a good day and one test result is just one result and next time might be different...


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I don’t think I’m getting any faster either, though the last five proper events I’ve ran I’ve managed to do a PB on each one. Today I did a lumpy 8 miles and after 4.75 miles I struggled. I had to do a run walk, I just couldn’t get going, then I tripped on a step and fell! I don’t know what the feck happened today.

Maybe you need a few days off, I’ve found having a rest can help to get the pace up again. Maybe we’re trying to hard.


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Thanks guys. My long run today was the fastest I've done that distance (although hardly impressive) so I am encouraged. I'm going to have two days rest and then run parkrun on Saturday as hard as I can and see what happens.

I'm not as grumpy today...I booked cheap flights to some sunshine at Easter.
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