Can anyone suggest exercises that will shave minutes off my running time?

Well, cross country season is almost over in a few weeks, so now I’m thinking about what to do about shaving off some minutes. Right now, I can run 3 miles in 23 minutes. I want to get down to around 18 minutes. I have 8-9 months to do this before conditioning starts in the summer. Since it’s getting colder and I don’t have so much time to run on my own (I play tennis, too) exercises I can do at home would be cool. So does anyone mind helping me out?

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  1. Cody T, 14 March, 2010

    I personally have ran cross country the past two years. Try and run at least 5 fives a day, until you get used to that. Then just keep adding miles. The only way to get faster at cross country is to stay fit, and run. Run all the time. And every time you run try to push yourself as hard as you can. Push through that imaginary wall, and go for it. It hurts, I know, but it also teaches you something about yourself. You might be surprised what you’ll find out. i have only done this once, don’t know if it helps or not, but try buying some ankle weights, running with them, then take them off. You can feel the difference. Don’t know if this helps or not, but like you said you have a while to try everything. My first year I ran 18min. But I slacked off the second year and averaged a 21min. Don’t be like me, keep on trucking. It hurts to start over after you take a break. I didn’t run cross country this year thinking I would make school easier this year, (stressful school), and I tried running yesterday at soccer practice I cramped up after 5 min of running.

  2. Coolguy, 14 March, 2010

    Maybe if you were a sprinter there would be some great exercises, but cross country is really all about building up your endurance in your legs and your lungs. Just going outside and running for 30 minutes to an hour would be the best exercise, but there are a few things you could do that’ll help slightly.

    Sit ups and leg lifts to make your abs stronger. You won’t get stomach cramps as much and you really do use your abs a lot when you run.

    Lunges or jump rope would both be pretty good for your legs. Jump rope builds your endurance more and lunges will make your legs stronger.

    Calf raises. You use your calves a lot when you run so this one would be pretty beneficial.

    That’s about it I guess, but running will definately be the best exercise for cross country. Running Hills a lot is very important too because if you can run up a hill without getting tired then you’ll do a lot better than most people.

  3. Abby, 14 March, 2010

    interval training and speed workouts. it helps no matter what distance your are running

    a good site is

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