When I first started running back in 2014, I couldn’t even run a mile without stopping. I would get out of breath quickly, and burn myself out before I was able to get too far.
For new runners, it is a great aspiration to run a mile without stopping. Many new runners are up for the challenge, but they may ask themselves “how long does it take to run a mile?”
They’re not sure how fast they should be going or even how to determine their pace. I hear a lot of runners asking “Is this a good pace?”.
I’m sharing a lot of information in this post about the average mile pace for runners (both male and female), how you should determine how fast to go, I’ll explain why you should use different paces for different purposes, and why you shouldn’t measure your success as a runner by your pace.
Average Mile Pace for Runners
There are many different factors that can contribute to your average mile pace as a runner.
Some factors to consider include age, sex, height, weight, running experience, weather, how hilly vs. flat the terrain is, and general health.
All of these things affect how fast you can run.
The average male runner in the US runs a mile in 9 minutes and 3 seconds, and the average women runner in the US runs a mile in 10 minutes and 21 seconds.
So what does it mean if you run faster or slower than the average? Not very much.
How Should You Determine How Fast To Go?
Many new runners wonder which factors they should consider when determining their run pace.
When determining how fast to run, it’s important to keep in mind that we’re all different.
We all have unique bodies and capabilities when it comes to running.
When you first start out running, you should aim to do the majority of your runs at an easy pace.
An easy pace, or conversation pace, is a comfortable pace where you could talk to someone next to you without gasping for air.
You should be able to speak in sentences.
Different Paces For Different Purposes
As a new runner, you should always start by running mostly at an easy pace. As your fitness improves, you can begin to add some faster paces to your routine.
Depending on what your running goals are and what you’re training for, you will be able to utilize a variety of paces to reach your goal.
A few examples of the different paces that can be utilized in training are easy pace, tempo pace, incorporating strides, race pace, etc.
A common misconception that a lot of new runners have is that if they want to run faster, they should run faster all the time.
Surprisingly, It is actually much more important to run the majority of your runs at an easy pace, and only do 1 or 2 speed workouts per week.
Don’t Measure Your Success As A Runner By Your Pace
As a running coach, I work with a lot of runners who have totally different running paces.
The easy pace is going to be different for everyone, so don’t worry if your easy pace is faster or slower than the average.
As I mentioned earlier, there are a variety of factors that contribute to your pace, and some of them are completely outside of your control.
When coming up with running goals, remember that you’re not competing with anyone else but yourself.
No matter what your pace is, the fact that you are out there running on a regular basis is something to celebrate!
You may also be interested in:
- How To Make Running Easier
- 25 Running Motivation Ideas That Will Excite You
- 5 Exciting Running Goals That Aren’t Races
Want to learn all the basics of how to get started with running?
Check out the Running Basics E-Book!