Top 39 Tips To Run Faster

There are many reasons a person may want to run faster.

You may be trying to get a spot in the Olympics.

Maybe you are trying to gain a starting position with the Army Black Knights football team.

Or possibly you are entering a marathon and want to know you are at your fastest.

Could it be that your spouse can whip you in a foot race and you have to change that pattern?

No matter the reason, there are ways you can run faster.

In today’s post, I have researched a plethora of running experts to find the top 39 tips to help you run faster.

I will start with #39 and work up to #1.

Use them and watch your running times get faster.

Who knows, maybe you will be the next starting half-back for the Army Black Knights, or you will enter the Olympics.

Here are the top 39 tips to run faster:

#39: Count Steps

No matter your pace or your form, knowing what your step rate is can be a good way to know what goals to set.

You want to know how many steps you take per minute, have a friend time you and count the number of times your right foot hits the ground as you run for 1 minute.

Now take that number times 2.

The fast runners are around 180 steps per minute.

Now you know what to shoot for.

Set a goal and raise it as you meet that goal.

#38: Recovery Time

No matter your level, you must give yourself ample recovery time after workouts.

Many runners do not give themselves enough recovery time and that is when injuries occur.

Make sure you take the breaks you need for ample recovery.

#37: Speed Training

There are 2 types of speed training:

  1. Speed strength
  2. Speed conditioning

Both are beneficial.

Curtis Williams is a former NFL wide receiver and is an expert in speed training.

#36: Foam Rolls

These devices aid recovery and relieve pain areas.

You simply use the tight rolled foam and roll pressure areas over it.

You can purchase foam rolls quite cheap at various outlets that have sport’s equipment.

#35: Know Your Baseline

Get on the scale and get a measurement of your body fat.

How will this help you run faster?

Mentally, you will see progress as you lose weight, and your brain will take you to the “success zone,” which will cause you to run faster.

#34: Keep Your Toes Up

Some of the experts say that keeping your toes up and not straight while running will help you gain extra speed.

You may have to make a conscious effort to do it at first, but when you see the results, it will become automatic.

Other posts you may enjoy:

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  4. Army APFT Regulation: Physical Fitness Army Regulation
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#33: Support

Everyone needs support.

Have your friends or family come along and route you to blazing speeds.

Not only should you seek support, you should also support your teammates.

It also helps if you have a running partner.

#32: Use Short Strides


Just watch some Olympic sprinters.

Even the tall, lanky runners use short strides.

It has been shown that a short stride gives you more power to pick up higher speeds.

#31: Do Butt Kicks

This Plyometric exercise can help you run faster.

Just run in place lifting your heel high enough each time to touch your own butt.

Try to do this exercise faster each time you do it.

#30: Throw Your Arms Back Hard

When running, throw each arm back hard.

This will create a pendulum effect and provide more power in your legs causing you to run faster.

Watch as you build speed using this method.

#29: Push Yourself Harder

You need to push yourself as if your were the head coach of a football team.

As they say, “No Pain, No Gain.”

Don’t let up!

Push harder and harder until….

And push harder still.

#28: Use A Treadmill

Treadmills are great in the fact that they are like an automatic trainer.

You can set the level higher and it will force you to run faster and faster.

A treadmill can be a good investment, but you can also find treadmills in most gyms and fitness centers.

#27: High Knees

This is another Plyometric exercise.

Running in place, try to get your knees as high as you can in front of you.

Do it faster and faster as you get adjusted.

#26: Motivational Music


With your iPod, you can get your “groove” on.

Find that music that will just give you that motivational push to run faster.

Some songs you may want to try are:

  • Boom Boom Pow – THE END by Black Eyed Peas
  • Hey Baby by Pitbull
  • Ridin’ Solo by Jason DeRulo
  • Takin’ Care Of Business by BTO
  • Thunderstruck by AC/DC

And, there are many more.

Music can be great running motivation.

#25: Proper Breathing

It’s about getting enough oxygen.

You need to inhale and exhale from both your nose and your mouth.

On inhale, you need to fill your belly with air instead of filling your chest.

A good example is find a clip of a major horse race (Kentucky Derby, Preakness, etc…).

Watch how the leading horses are breathing and mimic them when you are running.

#24: Lay Off The Sugar

Sugar filled stuff may give you the impression that it is providing energy but truth be told, it is slowing you down.

Sugar provides a quick burst, bu wears off quickly leaving you slower than normal.

Skip the sugar filled donuts and candy bars.

#23: Use A Running Parachute

You don’t have to be airborne qualified to use this parachute.

They provide resistance as you are training, and when you take he chute off, you will feel an increased speed.

A resistance parachute is a great investment for your speed running training.

#22: Go Bicycling

Bicycling is a great way to build your legs and running speed.

Get out the mountain bike and go for a ride to help your running abilities.

Just be safe while riding.

#21: Yoga

Yoga helps runners get faster in 2 ways.

First, Yoga helps make you more limber and less susceptible to injuries.

Second, Yoga helps relieve stress and anxiety that can slow you down.

I highly recommend Yoga as a means to get faster.

#20: Get Plenty Of Sleep

Too many people are going on little sleep.

If you get 7 to 8 hours of sleep, it will help you run faster and think more clearly.

Sleep and run faster.

#19: AlterG Anti-Gravity Treadmill

While I mentioned the treadmill earlier, this treadmill is like the Cadillac of treadmills.

You have the ability to set the gravity of your body weight.

Not only does this miracle of technology help you recover from injuries faster, it can help you run faster.

No, they are not cheap, but it may be the best investment you have ever made.

#18: Stay Well Hydrated

Drinking plenty of water is a key to running at top levels.

I suggest having a water bottle with you during training.

#17: Interval Training

Have you ever watched someone run, then walk and do pushups and sit ups, and proceeds to run again?

That is interval training and it works.

Use interval training and it will help you get faster.

#16: High/Low Intensity Training

This is similar to interval training.

You do a high intense exercise and then a low intense exercise.

Keep doing it for the time limit you have set.

#15: Keep A Training Log/Journal

Keep track of your accomplishments and failures.

You can use this log to set goals and objectives to reach those goals.

#14: Stretch

While there are debates on whether stretching keeps injuries at bay, the majority of top runners stretch before and after running.

By stretching your muscles, you will loosen and prepare them so you can run faster and more efficiently.

#13: Wear As Little As Possible

Now, I would not suggest streaking, but wearing the lightest and most efficient clothing can help build speed in the race you are running.

Don’t look Ethel!

Enjoy this old Ray Stevens hit.

#12: Alternate Jog And Sprint

This is a great training method to build speed.

Just pick a distance and sprint that distance and then jog the same distance.


#11: Running Planks

This high intensity exercise will have you running faster.

Get in a pushup position and begin moving your legs in a running fashion.

Try to move faster and faster.

#10: Jump Rope

Jumping rope will help you move faster and gain more stability.

Jumping rope is a great addition to your exercise routine, and it is a small investment.

Boxers use it, runners can benefit too.

#9: Keep Your Eyes Focused Forward

Just looking to the side for 1 second will slow your speed down.

When running for speed, keep your eyes always focused forward; not down, up or sideways.

#8: Footwear

You want to purchase lightweight and high quality footwear.

This is one tool you should not dinker around with.

It is what will help you move faster.

Runner’s World has shared what they believe to be the best shoes.


  • Mizuno Wave Catalyst
  • Puma Speed 300 Ignite
  • Hoka One One Tracer

#7: Drop Some Pounds

This is a no-brainer.

Losing weight in a healthy way can, and will help you run faster.

#6: Target Your Core

Your lower abs will help you run faster.

Targeting your lower abs in your workout sessions will definitely help your running speed.

#5: Weight Train

Doing weight training exercises will help you immensely.

Adding a weight training program is a wise move to help you become a faster runner.

Just make sure and follow proper weight training methods:

#4: Keep Good Form

Watch any top runner and notice they keep a good form.

You want your arms swinging correctly and your stride short, with your head straight and eyes focused forward.

#3: Drink A Cup Of Coffee

Studies have shown that the caffeine in coffee does help runners run faster, swimmers swim faster, etc…

It is a legal stimulant and works, so get a cup of coffee before you go on your run.

If coffee isn’t your drink of choice, there are other drinks with caffeine.

#2: Eat Whole Grains And Pasta

The carbohydrates in whole grains and pasta are great for runners.

They provide a perfect fuel to help you get extra speed.

I often use the example of a race car.

They could use regular gasoline or alcohol induced fuel.

The alcohol induced fuel makes the car go faster as will the pasta and whole grains for the runner.

#1: Run The Hills

When we ask any top runners what their top tip is for gaining speed in their running, this is the most popular tip.

Running hills helps build stamina, strength and motivation.

Find some hills to run and when you are running on flat surfaces, you will notice higher speeds.

Final Thoughts

Those are the top 39 tips to become a faster runner.

Do you have any tips you would add to this list?

What is your favorite out of the 39 tips above?

Remember to stay safe while running.

If you are running where vehicles pass, wear bright colors.

If you have any comments or questions, you can leave them below.

Thank you for visiting.

chuck holmes

Chuck Holmes
Former Army Major (resigned)

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