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Athletes yearn to be faster. They want to be the first to cross the finish line. Are you training properly to increase your speed? Here are a few tips to keep in mind to help shave seconds off your time if increasing speed is your focus.

Running hundreds of miles doesn’t necessarily make you faster. If you’re interested in speed, one “long” run per week is likely sufficient. This leaves more training days for speed work.

To get faster, you have to practice running faster. Spend time doing intervals and tempo runs. Push yourself harder in shorter periods of time. Follow these sprints with recovery periods, and then repeat.

Acknowledge your “off” days to allow adequate time for rest and recovery. Pushing too hard too often can lead to overtraining and burnout.

Optimize the health of your body. Maintain a healthy body weight, and consume healthy calories. Aim for fresh fruits and vegetables, lean protein, low-fat dairy, and whole-grain carbohydrates.

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