Serious Runners...how many times do you run per week?
I have gotten up to 6-10 miles per run. One of my friends who trained/ran a half marathon told me to stop running long runs daily. She said at the most run 3 or 4 miles after a 6-10 mile run. Thoughts? I thought running daily would help me increase my runs..but she says no, not good for your body.
I have to stick to the treadmill but I use it almost every time I hit the gym. I can't really run well outdoors for long periods of time without getting pains though I can sprint and jog for a while just fine.
Most marathon training guides suggest what your friend said, shorter runs with one long run a week.
And running is harder on the joints than walking, obviously. People who like frequent long runs get the aerobic benefit, but sure, their knees take more stress. You have to look at the benefits and drawbacks and decide for yourself.
I run frequently (4-5 x/week) but short runs, rarely longer than 3-4 miles. I throw in a longer run every now and then but not regularly; I'm not training for anything. When I was running longer on a daily basis I did notice knee pain after a while, which doesn't happen with the short runs. So for me, I decided I'd keep to my short runs and I feel I'm getting sufficient aerobic workout from that, while also keeping my knees healthy for the years to come.
It's more what you're doing and how hard you're working than how long you're doing it. I've run competitively my whole life, and firmly believe in the "one long run a week" thing, but with a lot of hard interval training (short and long intervals) during the week. That will do more for you, cardiovascularly speaking, than a long, slow run will.
I was following the Hal Higdon spring training then half-marathon training before I blew out my achilles tendon (hiking, of all things). It was 5x/week but one walk day and encouraged cross-training. Loved it. Built up mileage slowly but I got up around 30-40 miles a week at one point, with my longest run of the week being around 10.
It's good to mix it up-- you don't want to do a hard effort every time ( in terms of distance and/ or speed) The easy or off days help your body recover.
Many people, me included, can't run every day without getting hurt, and of course many people don't have time or choose to lift weights etc. alternate days. But if you're not training for anything specific goalwise and your body is ok with it, there's no hard and fast rule that applies 100% of the time and you shouldn't worry too much about it. (In my totally inexpert opinion!)
I ran part of a 50k this fall with an older guy and he told me he runs (and has for years) for one hour on weekdays, plus a long run on the weekend of 20+. Sometimes he runs 5 miles in that hour, sometimes 9 or 10. And every weekend a long run or marathon or ultra. He was in his 60s!
You're supposed to vary the types of runs you do so that some are long and slow, others are short and fast, and others are easy. Each type of run develops a different skill that your body needs to have to run well. So like one long slow distance run, one short fast tempo run, one hill or sprint interval run, and two easy days per week. If you look on Runners World, they have a ton of training programs.
disclaimer: I am a former runner. Nowadays, most weeks I do one mediocre run a week and six vigorous sitting-on-the-couch sessions.