UK Army Fitness Test | How to Run a Faster 2K

Are you preparing for your UK army fitness test? If so, welcome to RunDreamAchieve. I served for over 20 years on active duty in the US Army. So, do understand working a full-time job while training for military physical fitness tests. I recently created a new resource for military members training to run faster on the aerobic endurance portion of their fitness test. It is called the Army ACFT Embrace the Suck 2 mile course.

The course covers everything I was taught about running performance. In addition, I share the top strategies that helped me run 9:27 for 2 miles (3.2km), 14:18 for 5K and 2:19:35 for the marathon. The course discussed our US Army combat fitness test. That being said, the main focus is how to perform better on your run. In addition, is built specifically for military members of all branches and for those in allied forces as well. Also, for civilians who are seeking to run faster from 2 miles to the marathon.

The UK army fitness test is similar to our US Navy, Air Force and Coast Guard test. The reason is these branches of our US military also run 1.5 miles or just over 2km (1.2 miles). So, it is essential to learn the top tactics the world’s best middle to long distance runners use to run faster. I didn’t see a resource online built for military members. I wanted to create a running course to discuss everything I was taught. The end goal is to get more military members and civilians running faster from 2 miles to the marathon.

UK Army Fitness Test Run

Remember, the longer your build up, the better. A common mistake I saw many US Soldiers making is rushing their fitness. I highly recommend focusing first on building your aerobic base first. So, spend 4 weeks running easy. You can add in strides twice per week during your base-building phase. Strides aren’t log enough to build up any lactic acid. The great news is you will have spent several kilometers at close to sprint paces doing these.

Air Force PT test 2022
MAJ(ret.) Pennington finishing in 4th place at top American at the 2007 California International Marathon in 2:19:35

In addition, you are doing these short, acceleration drills on top of your other weekly workouts. The key tactic here is to improve the body’s lactate tolerance. Longer tempo runs, faster long runs and speed workouts will get that 2km race pace to feel more in control. I cover these topics in-depth. In fact, I am certain that if you follow the tactics I cover in this course you are going to start hitting some new personal bests.

Easy running will not help the athlete recruit more fast twitch muscle fibers. Faster running will. The more of these you can recruit the more effective you are going to race over 2km and longer. Yes, easy running is still essential though. Remember, the benefits of your hard training comes from the recovery. So, make sure you are jogging on easy days. The body can only be stressed so many times before diminished returns occur.

What is the Army Run Time UK?

The British Army fitness requirements or physical employment standards (PES) is a 1.2km run, mid-thigh pull, seated medicine ball throw, among others. Of course, there are other events like the press ups and sit ups as well depending on the test, That being said, the main focus of this new running course is to help military members run faster. Remember, the faster you run for 2km, the faster and more competitive you will be in the longer races. The new course consists of 9 modules comprised of 58 video lessons covering over every topic pertaining to athletic performance.

My aim was to teach military members and civilians everything I was taught to succeed by 3 of the world’s top distance running coaches. I was very fortunate to be a part of the US Army World Class Athlete Program (WCAP). You can learn more about the prestigious unit at

Proper pacing is vital if you are going to run a faster 1.5 mile run time. My recommendation is to focus on a negative split. So, focus on running those last 3 laps faster than you ran the first 3. What percentage of your weekly training have you been running at or below your goal 2.4km race pace? A major problem for most runners is pace sustainment. So, we have to train more of our weekly volume at paces faster than goal race pace. Again, improving the body’s lactate tolerance is the overall goal. The result is you will be able to sustain race pace longer and slow down less.

British Army Fitness Test 2022

The UK army fitness test will challenge you and it was specifically built, like the US army combat fitness test, to get you out of your comfort zone. Remember, it takes between 3 to 4 weeks for the body to adapt to any stress load being placed on it. So, be patient during your training build up. As mentioned above, focus on 4 weeks of easy aerobic running and strides twice per week. We have 3 choices in this life. We can be average, good or great.

Greatness is going to require far more than just running once or twice per week. I recommend running a minimum of 4 days a week if you really want to lower your 2km run time. Preferably, 5 to 6 days per week. In addition, do strength training at least once per week. I don’t think most service members need to be in the gym more than once a week. Focus on light weight and high reps. Also, explosive-type exercises like box jumps, medicine ball drills, sit ups, push ups and bench press.

Focus on Longer Tempo Runs

What has been the longest tempo run you have done training for your UK army fitness test? 2 miles? 5 kilometers? I would focus on working your way toward 8km in preparation. Of course, you need to do this gradually. We all have to start somewhere. In addition, the body has to adapt to each stress load. So, focus first on 3.2km to 4km before working toward 7 to 8km in length.

We run between 85 to 89 percent of our maximum heart rate at our anaerobic threshold. Our anaerobic threshold is the point where lactic acid begins to rise. No, it is not nor should it be an easy effort. I highly recommend investing in a heart rate monitor. I use the Garmin 245 and it is helps me to stay at the correct heart rate zones. Heart rate monitors are especially help during tempo runs and faster, varied paced long runs.

1, vo2 max workout per week is vital. Training at the vo2 max (95-100% of max HR) will recruit more fast twitch muscle fibers. The more of these we can recruit the more economical (efficient) we will run. Easy running will not produce this physiological adaptation. Faster running will. We can only spend a few seconds to a few minutes at this intensity. The key tactic is to eventually get your 2km race pace to feel easier and more sustainable.

Closing Thoughts

Would you like to keep in touch? If so, make sure to subscribe to the RunDreamAchieve YouTube channel. I focus on making at a minimum of 2 new videos there each week to help runners get to the next level in their training and racing. Lastly, focus on mental training as well. The majority of runners focus only on physical preparation and often neglect this. The world’s top runners focus on combining both mental as well as physical training to their routine.

Ensure to ingest some fruits, fluid and/or a Powerbar no later than 30 minutes after your harder, anaerobic workouts. The goal is to replenish that glycogen that it lost after speed workouts. In addition, practice hydrating better during your long runs.

British Soldiers are also training for other, longer endurance events as well. This course will most certainly help anyone aiming to run faster from 2km to the marathon distance. The reason being is the training tactics and fundamentals discussed are universal over all distances.

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