How to Run a Sub 5 Mile Effectively

Are you seeking how to run a sub 5 mile? If so, welcome to I founded this website in 2011 to help highly disciplined and driven athletes such as yourself to start using leverage. Leverage simply means doing more with less. The problem is we all have been taught to work hard and no smart. How many hard working athletes do you know who still miss their fitness goals? I have known many over the years too. So, running 100 miles a week at 8 minute mile pace isn’t going to prepare you to run 4:59. Yes, you will be extremely strong endurance-wise. That being said, you need to focus on speed development.

I created the Sub 5 Minute Mile Leader course to walk athletes through the exact steps to become a sub 5 minute miler. It is very easy to find a sub 5 minute mile training plan online. The problem is most do not go in-depth. In addition, walk the athlete through the exact workouts they need to be doing. More importantly, why they are doing the workouts prescribed. The goal of the course is to help eradicate the confusion and get the athlete in peak fitness. How to run a sub 5 mile comes down to training at, near and at significantly faster paces than 5 minute mile pace.

How Hard is it to Run a Sub 5 Minute Mile

It is definitely not easy to run a sub 5 minute mile. You need to be both mentally as well as physically prepared to run 4:59. There are many athletes who can run 2 to 3 laps at this pace. The issue is sustaining it for an additional 400m. So, you have to become very efficient at handling higher amounts of lactic acid. In addition, your lactic acid tolerance must be improved. The way to do this is focusing on 1, vo2max workout per week. For example, 12 to 16x400m at 1:10 to 1:15. Of course, you need to focus on starting off at slower paces. In addition, provide yourself with more rest. So, as you get fitter your paces will increase and your rest period between each hard interval lessens.

I lowered my 1600m best of 5:30 as a freshman in high school down to 4:22.10 for the mile (1609m) in 5 years. No, it wasn’t an overnight process. Yes, you need to be highly driven and focused to break a 5 minute mile. Remember, it isn’t about running higher mileage but focusing more on quality work. The mile is a highly anaerobic race and is over fast as you already know. So, you need to train those energy systems of the body that you are going to use in the race. In addition, you also need to build your strength and stamina as well. The last statistic I heard was about 1 in 450 people can run a sub 5 minute mile. Of course, this data can be skewed and there are probably more who can do it.

Can I Run a Sub 5 Minute Mile?

How quickly you get over setbacks and focus on training at, near and far below sub 5 minute mile pace will dictate your success. So, the only individual you can convince that it can be done is yourself. Again, don’t focus on volume. You could be running 30 to 40 miles a week and break a 5 minute mile. That being said, if 95 to 98 percent of that weekly volume is spent running at 7 to 9 minute mile pace it will be difficult.

So, the key is start training specifically to break through that sub 5 minute mile barrier. You need to hold 74 to 75 seconds a lap for 4, consecutive laps. The long runs you are doing each week also need to be faster. I believe in doing one, harder paced long run followed the next week by an easy, long run. Remember, running too many easy miles or kilometers will make you a superior long, slow easy runner. Your goal is to break 5 minutes. I also believe doing longer tempo runs will build that stamina you need to do it. The third lap is where most runners get the weakest. So, you want to build that speed and stamina to sustain pace better than your competition.

How Do I Train to Run a Sub 5 Minute Mile?

Place less emphasis on higher mileage and more on speed development. Below are a few more important facts you need to be thinking about to run a 4:59 mile…

  • Varied pace long runs i.e. 2 mile warm-up, 4 miles at 5:40 mile pace, 1 mile JOG, 1 mile in 5:15.
  • Alternate a varied paced long run with a relaxed, easy long run the next week to ensure recovery is taking place
  • Focus on mental training. How often are you visualizing yourself daily running 4:59 or better?
  • Hydrate well before, during and after your workouts
  • Get away from empty calories i.e. sodas and candies. Ingest foods that will assist the Ferrari engine you have
  • Longer tempo runs spent at 20 to 30 seconds slower than goal pace i.e. 4 to 6 miles in length
  • Focus on a 16-week block of training like at the conclusion of the Sub 5 Minute Mile Leader course
  • JOG on easy days. You will thank me later for this.
  • Push yourself to limit in training. The day of the race is not the day to be nervous and worried.

The above suggestions are brief topics I cover in-depth in the 5 Minute Mile Leader course. The fundamentals I teach in this course also helped in other areas of my running. I was able to lower my marathon best from 2:43:36 to 2:19:35 using the types of workouts you will be doing.

Sub 5 Minute Mile Training Plan

I didn’t see any legitimate sub 5 minute mile training plan courses online. So, I created one to help and coach athletes to break the 5 minute mile barrier. Remember, to run a sub 5 minute mile you also need to be paying attention to your nutrition. Nutrition plays a huge part in your success. Ingesting the proper amount of iron, potassium and protein will help you drastically. Your immune system will remain strong and your muscles will recover faster. So, do not neglect this piece of the training puzzle.

So, if you are looking for a one-on-one interaction with me as your coach check out this course. I cover essential training workouts that will help you get to your goal faster. More importantly, assist you in working less on what you don’t need and more on what you do. There are far too many runners running too many miles or kilometers too slow. So, if you haven’t broken 5 minutes in the past now is the time to start making the changes.

Closing Thoughts

Yes, it will be a challenge to get in sub 5 minute mile shape. That being said, if you plan properly and time your taper correctly you are going to see some major changes. Remember, the hardest working athletes don’t always get to 4:59. The smartest working and patient athletes will.

My goal with this post and with the Sub 5 Minute Mile Leader course is to help you to do exactly. Click on the button below and learn more about what it really takes to dip under the 5 minute mile barrier. I look forward to seeing you on the inside.

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