Beginner Running Pace in 2018: What You Need to Know
If you’re a new runner, or someone getting back into running, you might be wondering what’s a beginner running pace and at what speed should I be moving? Or maybe you’re wondering what pace is correct for new runners in general?
Should you be slightly out of breath, or gasping for air, or not straining at all? And, how can you tell what speed you’re running in the first place?
Here’s the problem, there’s more than one answer.
Each runner has their ideal running speed, and chances are, you’re not running at yours.
How do I know this?
Well, it’s normal to be running either too slowly, or more probably, too fast. Here’s a video I recently made explaining the perfect beginner running pace.
Beginner Running Pace is Usually Too Fast
Well for starters, it feels good to push yourself. And, when after a long break, you finally get the motivation to go for a run, you feel like the running pace should at least push you a bit.
You think it will make it worth it, right? Sorry, but that’s wrong.
You’re likely going to get hurt. Why?
It takes time for your body to adapt to running.
This is something to consider fully.
Breathing is usually the most painful part of running for newbies. But, it’s not just your lunges that need to adapt.
Your muscles, tendons, connective tissues, and many other things need time to adapt. And these things take longer than the cardio aspect to improve.
So that means if you are running while out of breath when you first start running, you are running too fast.
You are putting way too much stress on all the other components of your body and setting yourself up for injury. That is one of the main reasons injuries are so high in new runners.
How Slow Is The Beginner Running Pace?
Well, without trying to sound too vague, go as slowly as you need to go.
That means to run at a comfortable pace for you. Now, it takes some practice to refine the exact running pace; but here’s a hint: use effort as your benchmark.
A running pace doesn’t weigh in hills, muddy terrain, or even a 30MPH wind in your face. But the effort will always be the same regardless of these other circumstances.
I like to use a scale out of 10, and the beginner running pace should be a 3 or 4 out of 10, max. It might seem a little low, but trust me, this effort will be perfect in allowing the muscles and tendons time to get stronger too.
Less pain, more gain.
Running Out of Breath
Even as you go out and aim for a 3 out of 10 effort, there will no doubt be times when you’re still getting out of breath. This is normal, but here’s what to do.
Walk. Seriously it’s ok; actually, its encouraged at the beginning.
When you get out of breath, walk for a minute and then re-evaluate whether you can start again or walk more. If you’ve lowered your heart rate enough, start up nice and slow again. You can take all the guesswork out of using a walk-to-run plan right from the start.
Here’s a video about how to breathe correctly. Check it out.
Putting it All Together
Running at your perfect beginner running pace is your easy pace. It’s 3 out of 10 in an effort. It’s conversational, so that means you can still talk in full sentences as you go.
If you can’t check off both of those, stop and walk.
This might seem like you are barely moving, that’s seriously ok and normal. After a few weeks of staying at this pace, your body will adapt.
Body adaptations allow for two amazing things:
- You can run longer without getting out of breath
- You can run faster and still keep your breathing under control
As a beginner runner, this is everything you want and need to keep going.
Excellent job reading all the way down here. Now, go out there and put some of this new knowledge into action. For tips on what type of running goal or race you should start with, get my guide for free here.