An aerial view of a woman running and her shadow

Progressive Pace

  • Ideal for hitting a range of paces
  • Great for those who take a bit longer to warm up
  • A good way to break up a longer run

A progressive pace run is a good way of breaking up a continuous run and perhaps working a bit harder than usual.


You'll need a GPS watch or some means of measuring your pace for this session.

The Session

A progressive pace run is simple to explain and simple to execute. Just start at a nice easy jog and gradually increase the pace of the run.

Try and plan ahead so that for the final section of your run you are running fairly fast, then for the very last minute put in a really big finishing effort. Building up gradually like this can often mean you spend more time running at a faster pace than might otherwise be possible.

Depending on the length of the run, it's best to increase the pace every 3-5 minutes or so.

If you like you can take a formal approach and set an alarm on your watch to go off periodically, at which point you increase the pace by a set amount.

If you are taking this approach then work out in advance what is manageable in terms of both overall length and pace increments.

Progressive pace runs work well for runs of anything from 30 to 90 minutes.


Progressive Heart Rate

Another great workout that's similar in approach, but different in execution is progressive heart rate where you progressively increase heart rate instead of pace.


Be careful not to go off too fast. You want to leave yourself room to speed up.

No need for a separate warm up since you'll be starting at an easy pace and gently easing yourself into the run anyway. A good option for a cool down is to just add an extra easy five minutes on to the end of the run.