For recreational runners, a 7-minute mile is a worthy goal. For beginners, a sub-7-minute mile is a stretch but achievable with hard training.
If you are a beginner runner, it is sometimes disheartening when you find you can’t run a mile without stopping. Being able to run such a distance without taking a break takes time and patience and unfortunately, doesn’t happen overnight.
Is 7 Minutes A Good Time for a Mile?
- Short answer, yes.
- For a mile, 7 minutes is a relatively good time.
- If you’re new to running, that’s a worthy goal to work for.
So what qualifies as an ideal mile time? And is it good to run a 7-minute mile? Keep reading to find out more.
What Is a Respectable Mile Time?
For the average, non-competitive runner, a mile that can be completed within 7 minutes is pretty impressive. It is even more impressive if you can keep this up for every mile.
According to Strava, average times for a mile are:
- around 9 minutes for men
- about 10 minutes for women
Many runners may start off with a notable mile time like this. However, it is often difficult to keep this up throughout the entire distance.
Athletes, on the other hand, will often take 4 to 6 minutes to complete one mile. This takes an incredible amount of training and dedication, and they can often complete a whole marathon without breaking these timings.
Can a Beginner Run a 7-Minute Mile?
It’s not impossible – but it is unlikely. Depending on your overall fitness level, most beginner runners will take between 12-15 minutes to complete one mile.
However, if you spend a lot of time working out, or your occupation lies within the fitness industry, you may be able to complete the distance faster than you think.
How To Run a 7-Minute Mile: Top Tips
You may be at the beginning of your minute-to-mile goal – and that’s ok! That’s why we’ve put together a few tips to help you how to run a faster mile. You can thank us later!
1. Create a Strategy
If you’re set on improving your speed, then you will need to create a realistic plan of action to help you do so.
2. Interval Training
Next time you take to the tarmac, try sprinting for 30 seconds before taking it down to a light jog, or a walk, for 60 seconds. Gradually take this minute of light exercise to 50, 40, then 30 seconds, so that you are eventually running at a 1:1 ratio.
3. Lift Weights
Building your core strength will work wonders when it comes to increasing your mile time. Believe it or not, the majority of strength when running comes directly from your core! Keeping this part of your body strong will maximize energy in other areas such as the legs.
4. Motivate Yourself With Music
Create a playlist of your favorite songs to keep you going. You can motivate yourself by listening to upbeat music with a quick tempo. In fact, there is no need to create a playlist yourself, as there are thousands of playlists out there.
5. Find a running partner
Having someone to run with is ideal if you find running alone daunting. However, finding a partner that is faster than you is even better. Failing this, it might be a good idea to join a running club. Here you will find runners of all fitness levels, and this will inspire you to pick up the pace.
6. Stay Healthy And Eat Well
Eating a healthy and nutritious diet is the best way to obtain energy levels and stay focused. That’s not to say you can’t indulge once in a while. The key to a balanced diet is eating a bit of everything in moderation.
7. Stay Hydrated
Drinking plenty of water and refraining from drinking too much alcohol is not only vital for the body, it supports mental health. Staying on top of fluids works wonders for your breathing when running as it increases the oxygen in the blood.
How To Calculate Your Speed
In this day and age, there is a myriad of ways to measure your speed when running. Many apps and devices can record different inclines, your cadence (total number of steps per minute), and your heart rate.
The most widely used fitness gadgets include FitBits, Apple watches, and mobile apps. However, if you want to get really tech-savvy, you might want to invest in one of the following.
This barely-there device clips onto your running sneaker and provides users with important metrics such as tempo and stride length.
Not only do these measure vital running statistics, they also monitor your heart rate. What’s more, nobody will even know you are wearing one!
As well as measuring the heart rate, these lightweight armbands can provide a user with details regarding pace, calories burned and distance traveled. You’ll forget you are even wearing it!
The Bottom Line
So, there you have it. Running a mile in 7 minutes is better than average if we are talking about casual, non-competitive runners.
The time it takes to run this distance heavily depends on your overall fitness level and lifestyle.
Try not to be disheartened if you fail to reach this goal straight away. A little patience and a lot of hard work go a long way!