How To Increase Running Speed And Stride Length – UPDATED 2021
If you are looking at how to increase running speed, you need to be aware that two factors affect your speed more than anything else. Your strike rate and your stride rate.
Your stride rate is the length of your stride (in other words the distance between the same foot hitting the ground in two different places). Strike rate, on the other hand, is the speed at which your legs move.
You need to ensure your strike rate continues at the same pace even when climbing hills (achieved by modifying stride length).
You should also be aware that you need to train specifically for the length you run most often in. This is because sprinters have a much larger stride length than marathon runners.
Stride length can be increased first and foremost by making a conscious effort to increase it whilst running.
However, if your feeling like it is beyond your ability to increase it further try the following exercises:
One-Legged Squat – This develops your quads and hamstrings, and will increase your leg strength. Work on the push off from your back foot as your stride will naturally allow you to cover more distance.
Flexibility – Stretch your legs outside of training sessions and you find your stride gradually increases.
How To Increase Stride Length
Strideouts – This is where you run for approximately one minute and count your stride frequency as you run. Ensure you’re working on the leg turnover not speed! To give you an idea recreational runners stride between 80-85 times per minute while the pros stride up to 180 times per minute!
High Skips – This is a drill to make you’re running more efficient and is an important variable for those of you looking at how to increase running speed.
You want up to bring your right arm up with your left leg, (opposite arm with leg) then your left arm up with your right leg. Over exaggerate good form and think about achieving great height rather not speed.
Heel Slides – This is a great drill for upper and lower leg action. If you looking at how to increase running speed, repeat this exercise for 50 meters. You should start with a jog bouncing on your toes, then raise your heels as high as you can get them (without allowing them to travel beyond). You should imagine a wall on your back and bring your feet so that they would be flat and high against the wall.
Use A Coach – While personal trainers and running coaches can often be expensive, more and more people are coaching themselves with the use of training manuals and books. There is also valuable information online for free with a little research through google.
How To Increase Run Speed
Many people seek to learn how to increase running speed, for a variety of different reasons. While some athletes can hire a personal trainer and travel to the best gyms in the world, this is unfortunately not the case for the average runner. However, there are some ways to increase running speed without spending a fortune, many times for free.
The key to running speed is in the muscles. By increasing the number of fast-twitch muscles and strengthening already existing muscles, running speed can be increased over time with some honest hard work.
Anyone fortunate enough to live near a beach should take advantage of the potential to run in the sand. Running in deep sand in particular strengthens the bulky calve muscles, as well as the abs and glutes. While some runners prefer to run barefoot in the sand, others would rather wear running shoes. The choice is personal, but be aware of the potential for running on broken glass or other dangerous items on a public beach.
Exercises & Stretches For Running Speed
Practice lunges to work on hamstrings and quads. After a sensible warm-up period, select a pair of barbells appropriate to your abilities and strength. Holding one in each hand, perform two or three sets of ten lunges.
At the gym, utilize the benefits of the hamstring curl machine for your glutes and hamstrings. Initially select a lighter weight to begin with.
Lying on your stomach, curl your heels around the hamstring curl machine. Hold onto the side arm handles and press your tailbone down. Bending both knees together, exhale as you lift, and inhale as you slowly release the weight back down.
Swimming To Increase Running Speed
Working out in the pool can also greatly benefit your run speed. Start with a few laps to warm up, and then stand in the shallow end of the pool. Run from side to side as fast as you can for a few times. Gyms should also have leg weights available for rental or purchase. These are great for strength training in the pool, providing additional resistance for anyone learning how to run at a faster speed.
Anyone looking for tips on how to increase running speed without spending a lot of money should soon find that these exercises do indeed improve running speed. As with any exercise regimen, physician guidance is always highly recommended.