How can I increase my running endurance?

How can I increase my running endurance?


Currently I am 32 and have been unfit for a very long time. I recently started doing Coach to 5k but it got really hard in the middle and gave up.

Now I am doing interval training. I have two workouts, on intense days I do 15 second springs then a rest of about 1:10 seconds. On less intense days, I do 45 seconds of running followed by 1:10 of rest.

Both are not impressive, I can clearly see that but they both take a lot of energy out of me. Because of I find them both hard (but doable), I don’t feel like I am progressing. Do I keep trying and then suddenly bust through the plateau or do I need to do something else?


5 thoughts on “How can I increase my running endurance?

  1. If your joints feel fine, you should try to jog at a pace where you can see keep a conversation, i.e. slower than you probably think. You want an elevated heartrate but not in the HIIT category. Do it for 20+ minutes.

    If jogging is just too high impact, try swimming or cycling. Anything to get your heartrate up for a sustained period of time.

  2. Don’t worry about whether you are fit or unfit or whatever. What matters is you want to improve. Now you are on a journey for progress. The only person you compare yourself to is yesterday’s you. In every race I have ever run, everyone cheers each other on. We always celebrate progress. When I see you cross that finish line, sweaty and tired, I know you accomplished something great.

    Yes, you can do less intense workouts and still gain. Low intensity steady state will allow you to build up your longevity in your running. High intensity interval will help you with speed. The two may complement each other, but in my experience they don’t directly translate.

  3. Increase running endurance by running for longer, it sounds patronising but it really is that simple. If you fail a C25K day then repeat it until you succeed. I think i hit week 5 and the jumps were crazy and u never thought I’d finish it. Focus on why you failed; legs, lungs, stitch etc. and go find out about how to avoid it. Slowing down is the main advice but it could also be your footwear, hydration, stretching etc

  4. Building your aerobic base can really help with being more efficient over time. Train your long slow distance or steady state days at a HR of 180-age or even 180-(age-10).

    It may include stints of fast walking and that’s okay. Promise it works!

  5. You’ve just got to keep trying. I’m a lot older now and those gains are gone for me, but when I was 34 I was trying to get 2 miles under a certain timer. I didn’t use any sophisticated training I just had a stop watch around my neck and ran until I was about to puke.

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