One of the most common questions asked of running pros by beginners is how to improve running endurance. Here’s how you can improve your stamina – not your fib telling


Running endurance improvements require patience

“Give yourself enough training time to properly adapt to the increase in load and stress you will put on your body when you take on an endurance activity, like a marathon or ultra-marathon,” explains Joe Gagnon, the first man to run six marathons on six continents in six days.


Endurance follows strength

“Make sure you focus on your muscles by doing exercises like squats and lunges, developing mobility and stability,” suggests James Cato, a UK-based Asthma sports therapist.


How to improve running endurance? Switch it up

“Introduce a ‘tempo’ run each week to test your fitness,” says Gagnon. “Warm up at an easy pace for about one mile, then do the next two miles at a faster pace, then slow down again to an easy pace for another mile. Keep increasing that middle section by a mile each week. With the increased intensity, your body and breathing will be challenged.”


how to improve running performance


The turtle wins the race

“Consistency is key. You’re better off doing regular short runs than running as far as you can straight away and exhausting yourself,” says Cato.


Progressive overload works for running endurance too

“A good endurance running plan increases mileage progressively,” explains Gagnon. “Increase the number of miles you run week over week, and also increase the frequency of running from three to five (or six) days a week. The total increase should amount to around 10% each week.”


Fuel your running ambitions

“You burn 100 calories for each mile you run,” says Gagnon. “Adjust your eating to match the increase in your activity levels.”


Endurance running in numbers

Calories you’ll burn during a marathon.

Runners who showed kidney damage after a marathon.

Minutes each week you need to run to outpace cancer.

Incline you should run at to improve overall performance.


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