top of page

How to Run Longer

how to run longer

Long runs can be tough, but most of us have to run those long runs cause we want to run long distance races. So how can you run longer? How can you train to run a longer distance? Besides just going out there all the time, there are some things you can do to make it easier to run longer distances, so let’s look at those.

Let’s start at the beginning, before you go out running. You’ve planned your run you know you need to run X amount of miles for your training run. How do you feel about this? If you are dreading it, you don’t feel like it, think it will be a tough run, you’re scared you won’t make it. Chances are you might have a bad time on your run.

Try and stay positive, don’t focus on possible negative outcomes, you are training for something, you’re working on staying healthy, you’re building up your stamina, you have a great race to look forward to. Focus on positive things and realise that this run is getting you closer to your goal, it’s just one more step you’re taking in your training journey and it will improve your running and in an hour or 2 hours you’re going to feel happy that you did it.

Stay positive and know that you are growing, you’re getting better. When you go out with a positive attitude and you ‘want’ to go out running, you will have a better time doing it and will perform better and grow faster.

Girl running

When you start out running make sure you don’t start out too fast. Pace yourself. If you start out too fast you will slow down later and that will feel like it’s harder and will make you slow down even more. When you keep a steady pace from the start that you can sustain throughout your run, you will run more comfortably and you will feel better about your running and you’ll be able to go longer.

Which gets us to running with good form. When your form is good you’ll actually be able to run longer. Run up straight, don’t sway from side to side, don’t have your arms swinging all over the place and make sure your stride is proper. Land with your feet under your body for the most economic way to run. Now while you’re running and getting tired you might feel like you want to slouch and hunch forward, because you’re tired, but this actually will cost you way more energy and will slow you down. You’ll end up using more energy and taking much longer, so overall this is much harder then to run with proper form.

That being said, you do want to make sure you run comfortably. If your ‘regular’ way of running is not the most economic, but it is more comfortable and easier for you to sustain, you might want to keep running the way you run. You can always try and change certain things slowly by paying more attention to how you move your arms or how you place your feet, but do make sure you run in a way that is comfortable for you.

Running a longer distance doesn’t necessarily mean it has to be all at the same speed. I know I said to keep a steady pace, but you can keep that pace and take little walk breaks in between as well if you need it. If you feel you need a break to catch your breath, take short walk breaks. Don’t make them 10 minute breaks, but just let your heart rate settle, take a breather and start up running again.

A good exercise to do during your walk break is to check your breathing. While you’re running you’re not always paying attention to this. You can also do this while running, but if you’re slowing down for a break anyways, take a deep breath through your nose. Think about that breath, feel the air filling your lungs, feel your belly come forward as you breath in and exhale. As you exhale you feel that stress of the run, the exhaustion you were feeling blow out of you and you will start to feel more relaxed. Do this about 5 times while really paying attention to how you breath in and out. It’s an easy and quick way to get you back to focus on your task and ready for the rest of your run.

The last tip that I have for you is to push yourself. Now I don’t want you to overdo it. Don’t go out sprinting at the end of your run. But most of the time it’s that last part of the run where you don’t want to go anymore. You want to give up cause it’s getting tough and even though it’s just one more minute to go, you would rather just walk it and call it a day. That’s where you need to push yourself.

You need to get into a mindset of feeling you need to finish that run. A race isn’t over until you are across that finish line and your training run shouldn’t be any different. When it’s coming down to that last minute you just tell yourself it’s just 1 minute. You can do anything for just one minute. So keep going and push yourself. Get done what you set out to do and you’ll feel great about yourself that you did.


bottom of page