Hit The Track!

Kamariny Stadium Iten, Kenya Elevation: 2,400m

Kamariny Stadium
Iten, Kenya
Elevation: 2,400m

It doesn’t matter what you are training for – it may be a local 5k or a marathon major… or even an ultra – you need to hit the track.

Today’s post features one of my go-to track workouts: 1000m repeats

The great thing about 1000m repeats is that they can be for everyone. For example:

Beginner: 4 x 1000m (with 2 minutes rest between reps)

Intermediate: 6 x 1000m (with 1 minute rest between reps)

Advanced: 8 x 1000m (with 200m jog between reps)

Overachiever: 10 x 1000m (with 200m jog between reps)

One of the reasons I love 1000m repeats is that we all have become a little too comfortable running 800m repeats. Now, I’m not assigning blame or pointing fingers…


Seriously though, you can’t keep doing the same workouts and expect different race results. If you want to improve (get faster, run longer, lose weight, etc.), you have to do something differently.


You want to start out a little slower and get progressively faster. If you go out too fast, you will be riding the pain train home. Personally, I run the first few reps at my 5k race pace and see where I’m at. I recommend you do the same. For example, if you run a 25:00 5k, you want to run your 1000s in 5:00. If you run a 21:00 5k, you want to run yours in 4:12. Of course, like I said above, if you feel comfortable at that speed, you want to get progressively faster.

The Experts Agree:

1000m repeats are such a great workout that Sam and Steve of Sub-15 Minutes fame ran them not once, but twice.

Do you do track workouts?

What is your go-to workout?

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19 Responses to Hit The Track!

  1. emmelineruns says:

    I switch things up week to week, 800s, mile repeats, ladders, and usually 1000s once or twice in a training cycle. Dude…200m recovery? Holy crap, I need to reevaluate my recovery jogs it looks like.

    • Jason says:

      What do you do for your recovery jogs? And how long does it take?

      • emmelineruns says:

        I usually jog for half the time it took me to run the interval, which usually ends up being about 400m for a 1000. I’m kind of consistent with the half the interval recovery across the different track workouts…maybe short recovery work is in order though that sounds about as appealing as a hole in the head.

      • Jason says:

        That’s still not a ton of recovery so it’s probably not a big deal, as long as you’re running the reps a little harder… still, you should try cutting it in half, just for “fun”

  2. Sam says:

    Don’t forget the 20 s on, 20 s off going down until you pass out.

    • Jason says:

      I don’t want to take all the credit, but I’m pretty sure that workout is the only reason you even got close to 15 minutes. Also, that workout should only be done in a cold rainstorm.

  3. WalkToRio says:

    I rarely hit the track nowadays, but I still do my intervals (400, 800, 1km, 2km, miles, etc.) where I usually workout. It was a bit messy to measure it, but I got it done. Tracks in here are not easy to access, too far from the city center (where I live) and their opening hours are really bad for those with a full time job.

  4. leerunsdistances says:

    Yes I do implement track workouts my favorite is 4×800’s @ 2:55-2:58. My least favorite but still beneficial are 3×1600’s and I also like 12×1 fartleks

  5. piratebobcat says:

    Very nice! Good plan. I restarted my track workouts. I will work up to 1000’s. Sounds so painful!

  6. I don’t have a track to go to, unfortunately… I do speed work on the treadmill, that included intervals, although never went for 1000.

  7. Sounds like a great plan. I haven’t reached that level yet, I am afraid lol! I try to run about 400m hard and then jog, etc. I’ve also been doing something similar but with time. Thank you for an awesome post as always! xoxo

  8. 1k repeats are also a favourite of mine, or a pyramid – 100, 200, 400, 800 and then back down (but this is more for 5k training than distance running).

    • Jason says:

      I enjoy pyramids too – and I think there’s a place for the short stuff in distance running – it plays such a great role in overall conditioning. How often do you do workouts like that?

      • Generally I do speedwork weekly, but not for the last 4 weeks of a marathon buildup and I normally skip it during the Aussie rules football season because the training is all Fartlek – jogging with short sprints interspersed. That and having two days of training plus a game means I’m too knackered to add another speed session on top of that!

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