For a long time now, the running speed of humans has been a fascinating subject. Some people can achieve remarkable speeds, and they have improved their performances through different training techniques. The average human sprinting speed ranges between 20-30km/hr. This means that a person can run 100m in about 12-20 seconds. An elite runner can run at a higher speed of more than 30km/hr. Currently, Jamaica’s Usain bolt holds the world record sprinting speed by reaching an average of 37.57 km/hr. and a 44km/hr. (27.8 mph) top speed as he set the 100m world record.
What Happens During Athletics?
During a 100m race, an athlete reaches the top speed when hitting the 60m mark, and after that, their bodies start decelerating during the last part of the race due to fatigue. A long jump athlete usually has their top speed when hitting the boards, about 30-40m from the beginning of their run-up.
Which Factors Affect Speed?
Numerous factors can affect your running speed. If you want to run faster, you should consider these factors.
Your Running Clothing
The clothes that a sprinter wears during running can affect their speed. For optimal running performance, invest in lightweight clothes that are weather-resistant and fit you well. The fabric of your clothing should be high quality and sweat-wicking to keep your body cool and dry.
Some of the best materials include nylon, polypropylene, polyester, spandex, bamboo, and wool. It would be best if you also considered investing in cushioned running socks to protect your ankles.
The Shoes You Wear
Sprinting requires lightweight shoes that are comfortable to the feet and provide support while preventing injury. We’ve also recently seen the manufacture of some types of shoes known to help runners achieve more incredible speed by enhancing their running economy, form, and technique.
Your body weight may also influence your running speed. If you weigh more, you will use more energy to propel yourself forward. Weight and gravity go hand in hand. Whenever you lift your foot off the ground, you will be pulled against gravity. The difficulty will increase with the amount of weight carried by your legs.
Being heavyweight can also affect your VO₂ max, which also affects your running performance. Your VO₂ max refers to the maximum rate of oxygen your body can use when exercising.
Strength And Endurance
If you have a strong body, you will find it easy to use correct body mechanics while improving your endurance which helps you build speed. People with solid legs have more power, while those with a solid upper body and core can maintain energy as they utilize the correct form.
To stay active, you must be willing to engage in sports, bodyweight exercises, weight lifting, and HIIT workouts. Increasing endurance will require you to do a long run at least every week.
Steps To Take To Boost Your Speed
Improving your speed is possible as long as you take time while implementing every technique. It is essential to add a few strategies to your routine often and check how it works, as incorporating all of them at once may be extreme.
Practice Appropriate Running Technique
While running, you must keep your body tall and relaxed, strike the ground with your midfoot landing below your hip, and swing your arms back and front rather than sideways at low ninety-degree angles.
Incorporate Interval Training
If you do not have enough time for the gym, you can try interval training. Interval training involves exercising with high and low-intensity periods to gain speed and endurance while also burning significant calories in the least time possible.
Get Used To Sprinting
Many athletes run short sprints before they hit the big road race. A stride is a series of comfortable sprints (about 8-12, between 50 and 200m each) for improving the accelerating technique.
Run On The Treadmill Frequently
Treadmills have belts to help with leg turnover or stride frequency, thus making faster running easy. Moreover, you can push the pace to your choice. Therefore, if you are tired, you can slow down the speed or accelerate when you want to run faster.
Although it is unclear whether static stretches prevent running injuries, stretching daily and targeting your hip flexors is essential to increase flexibility and give you better strides.
Rope workouts are perfect for increasing speed. Boxers jump rope because they understand that fast feet mean fast hands. As a runner, you should also know that quick foot are equal to fast feet, hence why you need the rope to help you increase your jumping speed.
Invest In Light Shoes
Running in lighter shoes does not mean you embrace barefoot running. You can invest in lightweight sneakers that mimic the natural movement of your feet and improve stride. Using a less weighted shoe may mean more energy and faster feet.
People who have strong core muscles, particularly lower abs, can tap into more force when running. You should incorporate a few minutes of core work a few times a week to help you speed up. An ab training program can also improve core endurance, thus safeguarding your spine during exercise.
Change Your Breathing Technique
It would help if you practiced breathing when running at high speed by using both the nose and the mouth as you inhale and exhale to get in the optimum amount of oxygen to your muscles. You can also try belly breathing, where you fill your diaphragm (not the chest) with air as you inhale.
With the proper approach, humans can run fast. Nonetheless, they should consider the factors that affect their running speed and make the necessary adjustments. There is a massive difference between elite athletes’ average sprinting speed and the average person. Since an average person cannot invest a lot of time training as an elite athlete, their average speed is relatively slower. As you embark on a sprinting journey, ensure that you do not have any injury that may worsen during the activity.