As an average, middle of the pack runner, I thoroughly enjoy my time spent logging miles each week. I head out in the midst of a training plan for a long run, or in the depths of winter just trying to maintain fitness. Sometimes I need to increase my mileage, while others are spent riding the highs of solid running fitness. No matter the circumstance, though, the most challenging part of each week is completing those running workouts for speed.
Related: What Speed Means to Me
My reasons for running are quite simple: I truly enjoy it, it boosts my self confidence, helps me stay healthy, allows me to eat my favorite foods, and gives me never ending opportunities for improvement. Perhaps one of my favorite aspects of running is the fact that it allows each of us to continuously improve, regardless of our running fitness.
In my quest for improvement, I often find myself ambitiously researching running workouts intended to increase my speed. And each time I research different ideas for running workouts, I find myself overwhelmed with technical terms. Workouts involving 400s, fartleks, Yassos, tempo runs, heart rate training, threshold runs, and so much more. For a simple runner like myself, getting down to the nitty gritty in the middle of a run is often something I try to avoid.
Related: The Best 30 Minute Interval Run
Throughout the years I have experimented a great deal with different speed workouts. While I have learned something from them all, there is one type that has remained the greatest catalyst for my success: running intervals. Interval training may sound complicated in the beginning, but is actually quite a simple concept.
Run hard for a specified amount of time or distance, and then run easily for a specified amount of time or distance. Repeat.
As a runner looking only to improve my own speed and endurance – knowing that I will never be aiming for a first place finish or world record time – my favorite type of running workouts are the ones that are easy for me to complete, and help me to get faster and build endurance quickly. Interval training running has quickly become a type that excites me.
So what simpler way to complete an interval workout than with 1 minute running intervals? These one minute running intervals are short enough that my motivation does not falter, and yet I am still able to reap the benefits in a short amount of time.
This 1 minute running interval workout is ideal for beginner runners and those like me looking simply to better themselves without spending hours each week perfecting tiny details. This type of interval training running can be completed in a run-walk method as well: run the hard interval, and walk the recovery. (Although my personal favorite way to complete this running workout is to run hard, and then run easy).
If you’ve been wondering, does running intervals make you faster?
My answer would have to be yes. However, the key to this interval workout is to really give it your all during the “hard” 1 minute intervals. Hard for you may be running a 14 minute mile pace, or a 6 minute mile pace. Wherever you are, start there. Take the 2 minute recovery intervals easy. Slow way down, allow your heart rate to get back to normal, and mentally focus on your next running interval.
These 1 minute running intervals can be completed outdoors or inside on the treadmill. I love challenging myself to a running speed workout outdoors because it forces me to overcome distractions and temptations to slow down. Whatever the case, this running interval workout is sure to help increase your speed and build endurance in no time at all.
1 Minute Running Interval Workout
- Warm Up: 10 minutes easy running
- Interval 1: 1 minute hard running (5k, sprint effort)
- Interval 2: 2 minute recovery run or walk
- Repeat Intervals 1 & 2 (anywhere from 4 – 10 times)
- Cool Down: 10 minute easy running
The first week you run this workout, complete the 1 minute running intervals just 4 times. Feel free to use a run-walk method, or run for the duration while changing your effort for each interval. The second week, repeat the intervals 5 times. The following week, 6 times. Continue increasing the amount of repetitions until you are repeating the 1 minute running intervals 10 times.
Always remember that you get out of something what you put into it. If you decide to be lazy and run your hard intervals at your regular pace, your speed will remain the same. But if you challenge yourself for 1 minute each time, your cardiovascular fitness will improve very quickly. The beauty of this interval workout is that the running intervals last for just a minute. You can do anything for one minute. Push yourself. Challenge yourself. I bet you’ll be surprised with what you have to offer.
More running workouts:
- Increase Your Speed: The Best 30 Minute Interval Run
- Game Changing Treadmill Speed Workouts
- 4 Variations for Your Next Tempo Run
- What Speed Means to Me