If you have ever wondered what is better, if you train by measuring the time or the distance you travel, you have come to the right place to clear this doubt.
Both types of training have their advantages and disadvantages and the answer will vary depending on your level as a runner, your practice and the objective you have at all times: to gain strength, endurance, speed, etc.
If you are a novice runner, Yes
If you are a beginner, without a doubt, it is best to train for time. This will make your mind calmer and you will forget to keep an eye on the numbers you do. If you decide to run for 30 minutes, you will only have to be aware of running those 30 minutes and you will be able to look at other very important aspects when you are starting, such as correct breathing or an upright posture.
When you can run without a pause beyond 60 minutes without your legs giving out or short of breath, you can take the step of doing other types of distance or interval training to work on different aspects such as speed or strength, but that will be the next step. All in due time!
Benefits of Running for Time
If you are not completely convinced and still think that running 5 km is better than running for half an hour as a rookie, look at these four reasons to put minutes before kilometers.
You can control the duration of your training
In your workouts, the time it takes to cover a certain number of kilometers will vary from day to day, depending on various factors such as your level of physical condition, your mood, your diet, or the weather, among others.
However, if you go for a run for 30 minutes every day, you will go for that long run and that will not change. When you train with a watch, you do not need to increase or decrease your speed to reach a goal and you know the exact time that each training will take. On the contrary, when it comes to traveling a distance, that time can vary and you will not have as much control over the duration of your workouts.
If you are a beginner runner, you should be patient, since gradually increasing strength and endurance is important for your body to acclimatize to the exercise. As you evolve and gain more experience, you can start experimenting with other types of training.
You will feel very motivated
When you set a time goal, you will most likely reach it and you will surely feel great when you finish and see how far you’ve come this time. On the contrary, if you focus on traveling a distance at a certain time, it is possible that you will not reach it due to various factors and not meeting your goal can be very demotivating.
If you decide to set a goal for time, such as running 30 minutes and manage to meet it, you will feel more fulfilled and motivated to increase your goals around that time interval.
By training, by the time it will be easier for you to see how you progress, and you will feel that you do it much faster than training by distance. Without a doubt, being motivated will be one more reason to go running every day and not give up easily.
You will better regulate the speed
When you run for the distance, you can easily measure if you will reach your goal and this can create a mental challenge that pushes you to run some segments faster than others. For example, please pick up the pace when you see a kilometer left and it is about to get dark.
This can only cause workouts to experience fast and slow pace changes. This type of run, which we know as Fartlek, is beneficial for experienced runners whose goals are different from those of the novice runner.
When you start running, it is not advisable that your speed is variable, quite the opposite. You are interested in laying the foundations of your technique and finding a rhythm in which you feel as comfortable as possible and stick with it. As you gain experience and can run for a long time at the same pace, you can start to change gears, but for now, do not accelerate!
You will be able to enjoy your training more
If you only have 45 minutes to train and your goal is to run a certain distance and (for whatever reason) you don’t meet it, what can happen? Well, when you finish your training, you feel frustrated or think that you are losing shape. Besides being in a bad mood, you likely have not enjoyed that valuable free time that you had to disconnect.
If your goal is to run for time, you will not even need to buy a heart rate monitor with integrated GPS to see the kilometers you have traveled and you can completely forget about the figures. You have to enjoy the landscape and the environment surrounding you, paying attention to other important aspects for the novice runner, such as posture, stride, the position of the arms, or breathing.
Remember that you are starting and that now you do not need to set too difficult challenges or unattainable goals that will only get you frustrated if you do not achieve them quickly. The running is a sport that will bring you many things and lay a good foundation as a broker is essential to your evolution is satisfactory.
Time: Your Best Ally as a New Broker
You have seen four good reasons why time training is beneficial if you are starting in the world of running. Without a doubt, what is clear is that you will make your mind more relaxed by not having to be aware of the numbers.
When you have to focus on doing a certain distance and maintaining an individual pace per kilometer, it will only divert your attention too much from what you should care about as a beginning runner: improving your running form and enjoying your training. Do not become a slave to the figures and enjoy running!