Training

Get Speedy On The Treadmill With This Interval Workout

Half mile cutdowns will build confidence and work no matter what distance you are training for.

cut downs

When was the last time you did a workout you had never done before? If you’re like a lot of runners, it’s been a while, especially when you are stuck inside on a treadmill. Time to try something new.

“Cut-down” describes a workout in which each interval is run slightly faster than the one before. Half-mile cut-downs are a good place to start, because they offer benefits for runners training for any race distance. They give 5K runners practice running at race pace or a bit faster, and they give marathoners a boost in aerobic capacity, which makes marathon pace feel easier.

Half-Mile Cut-Downs
Challenge Level: Moderate to High

  1. Start with a 5- to 10-minute warm-up at a perceived effort level of 3 on a 1–10 scale.
  2. Accelerate to your 5K race pace and run for 0.5 mile.
  3. Recover for 0.25 mile at your warm-up pace.
  4. Perform another 0.5-mile interval, but go slightly (0.1–0.2 mph) faster than you did for the first one. (For example, if you ran your first 5K-pace interval at 8.3 mph, run the second interval at 8.4 or 8.5 mph.)
  5. After another 0.25-mile recovery, complete a third half-mile interval, again going 0.1–0.2 mph faster than you did in the last one. Continue until you have completed four to six intervals, depending on your fitness level.
  6. Cool down for 5 to 10 minutes at an effort level of 3.

More Treadmill Workouts
Open Loop Performance Test
Cruise Intervals