What? Never heard of junk miles? You know...those are miles where you just go out and run and that's it. You run the same 'ole route---at the same 'ole pace---day in and day out---and nothing ever changes. You've set goals and you want change, but you're not seeing any and that's because your body is used to the training you're doing. It's time to re-evaluate your goals and change your objectives (training) to be able to reach those running goals.
Running junk miles isn't necessarily a bad thing; If you're new to running, don't be offended by the term "junk miles"....because getting out and running in the first place is a great thing for your mind and body and that should be your goal right now--so junk miles are definitely your friend...but if your running goals are to increase speed or endurance, you'll have to add some quality running to your training program. Quality running includes some form of speed work to increase your speed or a longer run to increase your endurance once a week. Changing up your training and adding in quality miles will definitely improve your run....try it and see! Save the junk miles for the off season or for easy running days when recovery is really important.
Setting fitness and/or running goals is an important first step and if you've reached your first goal of just "starting to run", you may not be ready to tackle speed work or longer running just yet. Listen to your body and when you're body is used to what you're doing and you've stopped seeing the fitness gains that you're after, it's time to start trading in some junk miles for quality miles so you'll start to see those gains and you reach your goals. Remember, reaching your goals is one of the greatest motivator EVER!
Happy running everyone :)
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