Red Wine Runner

A Scottish Running Blog

The fastest five miles

There’s been a bit of radio silence here on Redwinerunner the last week or so, but only because I’ve been kept busy with all of our Christmas preparations and celebrations so far. I’ve been attempting to stick to my usual exercise plans throughout but on occasion other unavoidable events have really thrown me off track! A poor excuse though; you can usually always make time for a quick run but if it’s a choice between that and my work Christmas lunch I’ll pick food over a run every time.

Anyway, I’m still increasing my regular mileage up and up by 10% each week and according to my rough training schedule I’m running 4.75m three times a week at the moment… Since I’ve missed a couple of sessions recently I thought I’d just stick with that distance over the holidays and not risk pushing myself when I’m not running regularly, however I was reading a copy of Women’s Running that I picked up and discovered some interesting looking treadmill work outs that I thought looked worth my time.

‘Run your fastest five miles!’ the first one promised. My problem on the treadmill starts after about half an hour, which is when I just get BORED. If I’ve got a great playlist pumping then that helps, also if I’m near a TV channel with subtitles; but the main issue is boredom and my mind wandering into dark areas such as “How much longer do I have to do this? Maybe I could just stop at 3.5miles…” etc etc. Thus the reason why I’ve not been very successful in the past with long treadmill runs – 5 miles is the distance that I really have to be out on the road to keep myself entertained.

This workout caught my interest as it changes speed every half mile, breaking the workout into neat little chunks so that my brain would always be thinking about what I’d be doing next. It promises to get you running at a faster pace for longer and after completing the workout several times, your 5 mile time on the road should be totally crushed. Sounds good to me, especially as my pace on a treadmill is always so much slower than on the road (don’t know why, still trying to find the answer!).

So you can see the break down of the workout here. I decided to tweak it slightly as I didn’t fancy running an entire mile at 5.5mph – which would take over 11 minutes – and I much prefer to end my workouts with a final sprinting push and then cool down AFTER I have reached my goal.

I felt strong throughout the whole run and not bored at all. I wanted to do it in under 50 minutes for a first attempt, so I can consider that a success as well. I think I’ll give it a couple more goes as it is before tweaking it further – I’ll maybe bump every speed up by 0.2mph and see where that gets me. Another idea is to can the warm up and just run the first mile at 7.0mph. Since I finished feeling still so strong I’m confident that I can dial it up a few notches and get my 5 mile speed down loads!

The first 10k of the year is in April and although it’s a challenging course with a huge hill at the end (so I’m told…) I’d still like to make a good go at beating my 10k PB of 54m 47s. If anything when I do the Baker Hughes 10k the following month I’ll be set to completely blast my PB out of the park!


  1. Great blog again Rhona! I have to do most of my winter training indoors on the turbo and find that interval sessions are great at keeping the monotony from setting in. Sounds like you nailed this one! Are you doing the Garioch 10k out here in April? That’s usually a good one I believe.


    • Sorry Ali – I totally forgot to reply to you here!
      Thanks for your comment – I tried to do the 5 mile workout again yesterday but bonked after 4 miles, Christmas has taken it’s toll a little!
      I looked at doing the Garioch 10k after this comment, especially as I haven’t got a race for March yet and I’m aiming to do one a month this year. It’s on the 20th of March so just before I head out to Texas… It looks like a good race actually! I don’t know if i’d do anything great with my time but it would keep me pushing forward to blasting my 10k PR at Baker Hughes in May.

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