Help - Outdoor running

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04/05/2010 at 15:49

Hi. I've been running for a few months now. I started off in the gym and a few weeks ago, as the weather becomes "warmer", started running outside. The problem I have is that I can run consistently and well on a treadmill for up to 30mins but now during my outdoor runs I find myself having to stop/slow to a walk a few times during the run. All I'm looking for is to be able to run for 30-45 mins non-stop at a speed of about 11kph. What's really bugging me is that I can cycle and walk miles outdoors without hinderance but I just can't get my running down. I understand now why so many people give up after a few weeks - not that I'm going to.

Probably a good idea to let you know how often I go running. Currently I run 3 times a week (between 2-3miles) with a day inbetween. I also go to the gym 3 times for resistance training. On 2 of the days I run I also go cycling anywhere between 10-20miles and I do core training 3 times a week with the resistance work. So basically I'm exercising 6 times a week alternating between cardio and weights e.g. Mon-cardio, tue-weights etc.

So does anyone have any hints, tips, suggestions, drills, training programmes that may help me punch through this problem....

 Any and all suggestions welcome. Thanks


04/05/2010 at 16:03
Hi Pete - it takes more energy to run outdoors as you are dealing with differing terrain and wind etc.  Don't worry, the only way to get better at running outdoors is by running outdoors and it is very different to running indoors.  Slow right down and if you feel you have to take a walk break don't beat yourself up about it.  You will get there - take it easy - remember there is more impact to your joints outside as well so don't go mad!  There really is no magic formuler that will get you used to this it is just gentle persistance!
04/05/2010 at 16:08
Yes, slow it down, particularly at the start of your's very normal to feel like you are struggling outside. Your overall training programme indicates you must have a good overall level of fitness, so really it's just that your body needs to adapt to running outside. And as Tigerlily says there are loads of variables that you just don't get on the treadmill. But after a while you'll get used to it, so stick with it.
04/05/2010 at 16:11

You say you want to run for 30-45 mins at roughly 11kph. That means you would cover approx 6.5km-8.25km in a session whereas you usually only cover 2-3 miles in a run which is about 3.22km-4.83km. Your maths doesn't seem to add up there. It looks like you're trying to double your distances virtually overnight. Maybe that's why you're tired?

04/05/2010 at 16:16
I have no help to offer but I'm interested in the replies you get.

I have a similar issue, except I've been trying to run for years!! I won't give up even though I still don't breathe properly and my times have remained constant 30 mins for a 5k 60 mins for a 10k and the 2 half's I've done took 2h 18m and 2h 37m.

I have days when I can run slow and long for ages and other time I'm running, walking, running, walking over a distance I should be well used to. Others seem to improve, I've kinda resigned myself to just being a plodder and not a runner I'm pretty sure I'm doing it all wrong but I keep going
04/05/2010 at 16:21
Miss knees - do you do any type of speed training, hill work, repeats? 
04/05/2010 at 16:30
Sometimes Tigerlily, but I forget to do speed training when I'm out on my long runs and just plod along Sometimes I take a notion and remember but it's not often enough I know. I'm more likely to do it on the treadmill though. We have no hills near me unless you could some steep bits in Richmond park.

Will the speed training really help with my breathing? I really thought I would have had that sorted by now but a year and a bit after quitting smoking and increasing my running I still wheeze on a 5k!!
04/05/2010 at 16:31
Sorry Pete, don't mean to highjack.....
04/05/2010 at 16:49

Sorry Sleepy Cat but your post has me a bit confused . What math???  I try to do 2-3miles per "run" but find myself stopping and/or walking for a short time then continuing. This takes me more time than if I were able to run the route at a constant speed. I'm not trying to double my distance over night; I'm trying to improve my running ability so that I can run consistently and constantly for 30-45mins. Hope that clears up any confusion

To the others thanks for the replies. Basically it just comes down to patience, persistance and practice which I know works because last year I did a lot of cycling and over winter worked out in the gym and have found that my average speed has increased by at least 1.5mph. Doesn't sound like much I know but I was quite pleased with that

04/05/2010 at 16:56
"Sorry Pete, don't mean to highjack....."No problem Miss Knees  any tips or answers to another's question are all worthwhile. 
04/05/2010 at 17:11

OK P Patching, now i'm confused.

If ur running for 3 miles per run then that equates to roughly 4.83km (which i assumed you covered in those 30min treadmill session). If you run for 30 mins at 11kph, like u said u wanted to, then you would cover 6.5km.

I read it and thought you were wondering why you couldn't magically run further in the same amount of time just because you were outdoors. I must've read it a different way to everyone else.

04/05/2010 at 17:17
I'm thinking the 11kph is just an average and it's the running for the time length without walking that is the issue?

04/05/2010 at 17:21
Oh right, i think i get it now. Thanks, Miss Knees.
04/05/2010 at 17:22
I might be wrong
04/05/2010 at 18:18

A bit besides the point but 30 min at 11kph would be 5.5 km rather than 6.5km, Sleepy Cat... I'll leave you to make your own comment about your maths!

Keep at it, Pete, and you'll soon get there. If you can find somewhere nice to run, it helps! I try to distract myself with the scenery and squirrels in the park.

05/05/2010 at 15:47

Hey all. Sorry for the confusion. Miss Knees has is right. I can run on the treadmill for X amount of time without stopping or walking but when I'm running outdoors I find it harder going and have to stop/walk for parts. Probably should have left the distance and speed out and just said "hey how can I get myself running continuously for 30-45mins?"  Hopefully this clears it up

Don't know about the rest of you but sometimes when I write/type something down it sounds better in my head than it does on paper/screen

Good thing about the town I live in Helen is that it's built around a bend in a river with a large park running along the one side of the bend, so there's a nice quiet path and fields with trees to run through.  

 While I think about it I've found an A4 sheet of A4 with a running table on it which shows an a 8 week programme that takes you from running 5mins, walking 2min

to running 15mins, walking 1min. Is this what's called Interval Training?

One other thing would doing something like the bleep/shuttle test help? and if so where can I download an MP3 file of it?

 Thanks for all the replies and tips


05/05/2010 at 15:55
PP - That's not interval training. Interval training pushes you so you feel like you will be sick in your mouth

There is loads of info on here or the net on it. Also look at Fartlek training. You can get some good videos on youtube for more info.

I've read all about it and then forget to do it lol
05/05/2010 at 16:14

Hi pp & all - I still really think you're worrying unnecessarlily P.  You can build up to running continuously for 30 mins outside if you slow right down.  Until you can do this I wouldn't worry too much about speedwork - get a good base of fitness first (about 6 wks) then start add in speed work, tempo, fartlek and hills.  I still think the only reason you can do it on a treadmill is that it is much easier - no wind, no varying terrain and the treadmill actually carrys you forward so it takes less energy.  Good luck - I know you will achieve this.

I don't think the bleep test would help you, though it's a fun competitive thing to do every now and again (bleugh!) 

And Miss Knees - I think you know why you're not getting faster/fitter.  You have reached a plateau that your body is comfortable with.  From your posts you know what to!  Do you run with a club?  Speedwork is much more rewarding if you do it with someone.  You actually sound like me..........."hmm, think I'll do a bit of speed work tonight.......but it's much nicer just wandering along looking at the scenery  Ooops! I'm back home now......... maybe I'll do it on Thursday.........   LOL - i know how you feel!

05/05/2010 at 16:25
You have it spot on Tigerlily!! That's exactly what I do and then home before I remember. I've started running with Parkrun doing a timed 5k every Saturday but there is another running club on a Sunday morning as well but I really think I'm a bit too slow for it. I'm not brave enough to subject others to my pace.

I am more focused than I have been for a long while so hopefully this time I'll be on track and fix it. Consistency and speed work, that's my goal for now Lots of runs booked for this year so need to keep at it.
05/05/2010 at 16:33
Good for you MK's - the Park run is an excellent idea - and you should never think you're too slow.  A club worth their salt should make it a priority to help you!  Stick at it - BTW, your "wheezing" - you're not suffering from a bit of hayfever are you?  Pollen count is pretty high at the moment - I nearly died running through a field of rape the other day........
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