Archived: Road Block


Got a question about running? You’re in the right place. Every Tuesday, world-renowned coach, author and athlete Hal Higdon posts and answers athlete questions here. You can submit your question by joining the discussions on Hal Higdon’s Virtual Training Bulletin Boards.


I have been running for a few months now and seem to have hit a road block. I recently moved to a new city and have stopped running outside, because I’m not yet used to the hills. Now I can’t seem to run as far. I ran 5 miles once and haven’t been able to get there again. Around 2 miles, I start getting really tired, and my legs start to burn. I’ve never had this problem before. Should I just push through, or is there something I’m doing wrong?


Slow down a little bit and that should help. Also, running on a treadmill—if that is what you now are doing exclusively–can be mentally draining, sometimes harder than running outside. Head out the door and see what happens. Remember to run the hills at an easier pace and you should be fine. And sometimes run short even though you think you should run long. What’s wrong with a 2-mile workout at a reduced pace? Finally, each day I post a “Tip of the Day” to my Facebook page, Hal Higdon’s Marathon. Here is a recent Tip that seems to fit your problem: “When you analyze the training of fast runners, you discover that not only do they sometimes train at slow paces, but that they train differently each day. If I had to cite one mistake made by inexperienced runners when they seek to improve their performance, it is that they run too many of their miles at the same pace, and over the same distance. There is little variety, and that limits their improvement.” Eventually you should adapt to your new city. You need merely to be patient…and to keep running.

About the Author

Hal Higdon

Hal Higdon is a Contributing Editor for'Runner's World'and author of 34 books, including the best-selling'Marathon: The Ultimate Training Guide. He ran eight times in the Olympic Trials and won four world masters championships. Higdon estimates that more than a quarter million runners have finished marathons using his training programs, and he also offers additional interactive programs at all distances through TrainingPeaks.Hal uses'TrainingPeaks'to power his interactive marathon and half marathon training plans.'Check out more of Hal Higdon's training plans here'or on'his website.

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