The Talk Test – pacing yourself when you run

Whenever I am coaching runners who are just starting out or, perhaps, runners that have a tendency to overtrain or train too hard, I remind them of the Talk Test.

What is that?

The talk test is a great way for athletes to check in with themselves to see if they are going too fast or too hard.   You simply, consciously, talk to your running partner (or yourself if you are running alone!) and note whether or not you can carry on a conversation for a while.   If you can’t, then you are going too fast.  

On the flip side, you don’t want to be able to sing a song in its entirety – then you are going too slow.

EXCEPTION to the rule of the talk test is whenever you are doing a tempo workout, intervals or running a fast race.   Then, you definitely don’t want to be able to carry on a conversation!   If you do, then you aren’t training/racing right to receive the benefit of the specific workout.

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