T Nation

Advice for Cardio/Conditioning, 1.5 Mile Run Test


#1

Hey everyone I was just wondering if I can get help/guidance for some conditioning/cardio advice. I been someone who has been avoiding cardio for the past 4 years and just mainly stuck with weightlifting. Currently I workout Monday, Tuesday , Thursday and Friday. The other days Wednesday Saturday and Sunday’s are my off days. Anyways I’m in need to start adding cardio because I have testing coming up and I need to hit 1.5 miles in 17 minutes I know doesn’t seem like much but I can only do 1.31 miles in 17 minutes. I’m really wanting to get better in the cardio area and edurance but I would hate to lose my strength since I like myself and a lot of people here love their strength gains achieved over the years. Anyways I just need advice/help when I should do cardio training or if I should just focus on cardio only and forget about weightlifting for awhile. Should I do cardio after my workouts?


#2

Yes, doing running training after your weightlifting should work fine + no, unless you are clocking up miles & miles of running every week training for a 1.5 mile run shouldn’t hinder your weightlifting much if at all really (it might even help a bit).

So yeah, if it was me I’d go for something like:

Monday: Run 1.5 miles as fast as you can.

Tuesday: Run an easyish 2 miles at a pace a bit slower than your 1.5 mile pace (but not too much slower).

Thursday: Do 2-3 1 mile intervals with about 60-90 secs rest between ran at a pace which is at least a bit faster than your 1.5 mile pace.

Friday: Do some form of HIIT for about 10-15 mins, ie: prowler work, sprints, cycle sprints, kettlebell swings etc.


#3

Thanks for the advice! I will be trying this out.


#4

Sprints. Sprints. Sprints.

Do I need to say it again? It’s my only form of cardio.


#5

1.5 miles in 17min is literally slightly faster than walking pace so this is going to blow your mind: just go out and jog two to three miles four to five days a week. Run/walk if you have in order to keep the intensity down. There is no need for the sudden stress of speed training for a run that is going to require you to run a little faster than a shuffle.


#6

Stay away from anything that will raise your blood pressure like alcohol, cheese, meat, and anything with a ton of sodium in it. If you can’t cut it completely then limit yourself. HIIT runs help where you walk for a minute and run as fast as you can for a minute and repeat. Changing my diet is what helped me, but I wasn’t training for anything. I run 2 miles in about 20 minutes 5-6 days a week, but I’m pacing myself.


#7

If you want to be challenged but have some fun, get a 50lb sandbag and do runs up a set of stairs. Walk back down slowly so you don’t fall, turn around, and run as fast as you can up the steps. I did only this for a month and I could do a 300 yard sprint like it was nothing. Climbing steps is much more challenging because it has a strength as well as endurance component. The added weight of a bag just makes it more fun.


#8

The Navy PRT included a 1.5 mile run, here is what I did to get my run time down to 9:00.

Quarter mile repeats at a fast but sustainable pace, followed by a 2:1 rest period (meaning, if the quarter took 1:20, then you rest for 2:40). This can be done on a track if you have access to one, or on a treadmill if you have one that goes 12mph+. Definitely more brutal on a track, but the treadmill still gets the results. Each workout consists of four runs.

After doing it this way a few times, start cutting the rest period until you get down to 90 seconds rest for all four rounds. That is where I saw great improvement, but recently I did this again for a physical test as part of a job interview (so to speak) and I was cutting my rest periods down incrementally until I was doing the workout with 45 second rest periods. Obviously, I’m not running world-record pace 400s, but it’s still a great way to improve your run.

Agreeing with guys above, 17 minutes for a 1.5 mile is slow as molasses. What is this testing for?


#9

I second what boatguy said. I trained for a 1.5 mile run using 400 meter sprints and was able to get a time of 10:30 at 255 lbs. I was really happy being the heaviest guy under the 12 minute mark. What I did was 3 days per week I ran 400 meters for 2 minutes or less per round. Your starting point can be slower than this but for me it was just enough that if I pushed hard each round I’d make it. Total rounds each day I started with 4 and slowly worked up to 10. After each round I did 15 pushups and 15 situps because they were part of my test I was training for. Then I rested 3 minutes. For strength training I did my main lift and 1 accessory exercise then I went and did the 400 meter sprints. You have to back off on the weights volume but there’s no sense in quitting completely. Good luck to you.


#10

This actually answered my same question that I just posted so maybe that thread can be a bump!

Based on the time, I would assume Customs or Border Patrol which is what I am currently starting to run for…

That initial test is 17.34 or something close to it… Once in the academy, that moves down to I think around 13 minutes to complete.

I myself do not have a track available and the tredmill feels funny to run on lol.

I have calculated the 1.5 miles from my home and although it seems short it is a tough distance for us noobs. I wish I had a track as 4 rounds would be 1 mile, easier to calculate.

My issue is, my calves tend to start locking up and cramping… How can I avoid this to effectively increase my distance? I usually try to run as far as I can before I start to walk and then I will rest for 30 seconds and then start to run again…

For me personally, I would say I have maybe a good month to practice this… I’m already far in to the process and getting closer to the run portion.


#11

This sounds pretty good. After practicing these sprints, how did running the full 1.5 mile feel on the first try doing it?

What’s a good way to calculate 400 meters? Maybe I should try this method out so it can work on my leg power and my breath.

I already went through the initial physical exam, so the running is my next up.


#12

What’s the test for?


#13

You asking me or the op who made the original post?


#14

The OP. I didn’t realize the thread was so old…


#15

It felt great. I got my best time ever. A rough estimate for 400 is take
400 steps. You could try finding a measuring wheel or 1 lap around a
standard track also.


#16

So basically 400 meters would be roughly a 1/4 mile if it’s the size of a track. Shit I wish I had a damn track near my home, would make it so much easier lol.


#17

You don’t have a high school nearby?


#18

Nothing close by my house and now that school is in session, definitely can’t run in the mornings there.


#19

That’s a bummer. Is your test going to be on a track? Ours were always road tests and I honestly thought it made it easier.


#20

I’m not too sure to be honest. I don’t have the location of this exam yet neither. If it’s local I’m wondering if they’ll use the police academy at the community college which would most likely then be a track.

I’d rather have open road though. I think mentally overcoming the track is different, makes it seem more challenging to do up to 5-6 laps rather then just run straight and focus on the pace you’re running than the distance.