How to Keep Improving As a Master’s Runner

When you’ve had a banner year and want to keep improving, what’s next? It takes some dedication, but it is possible to get faster as a master!

Improvement in running is addictive. To be able to see continuous, measured progress is a huge part of what drew me and so many others into the sport. Working towards a goal and earning a PR is incredibly satisfying, whether you’re new to the sport or have been running for years.

As you get into your 40s and beyond, inevitable physiological changes mean that you have to train smarter to continue to make progress. While every runner is different, the majority of master’s runners will benefit from training that includes strategic workouts, strength training, and maintaining a high volume of aerobic running.

How Bradford can keep his improvement train on the tracks

This week’s podcast features a coaching call with a runner named Bradford. Don’t miss our other coaching call episodes:

After a year of fast racing, Bradford had a taste of success and is looking to make continued improvement as a new master’s runner. Having recently turned 40, Bradford set some challenging but realistic goals for the year ahead: run a sub-3 marathon and qualify to run Boston in 2024.

Bradford lives in Washington, DC and often runs several workouts each week with a local club of competitive athletes. While these structured workout sessions have enabled him to achieve fast times in the 5k and half marathon, Bradford is wondering how best to juggle all the elements of training for his first marathon.

Bradford and I talk about his past and current training and plan for how he can achieve his goals in the years ahead. While he is doing a lot of things right, we discuss ways he can make continued progress, including:

  • How to alter his current schedule of workouts
  • The importance of race selection when setting a challenging goal
  • Why more mileage is so key to his marathon goal
  • Using tuneup races to evaluate his fitness
  • How to fit strength training into a busy schedule

Often we think about what we’re doing wrong in training. This is a fun discussion on how to keep improving when you’re already on the right track. Enjoy!

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