Skill Level Descriptions

Beginner

Starting Point: Where you are
• Never run before or relatively new to running
• “Recreational” Runner
• Unfamiliar with running terminology or technical aspects of running

Things to Learn: What to learn
• Proper hydration and nutrition
• Type of shoes that work best for your feet
• Running terminology
• Equipment

To the Next Level: How to move up
• Consistently run
• Learn terminology
• Incorporate various training methods

Events/Activities: What you should do
• Local Races
• Join a Running Group
• Find friends to run

More about the Beginner Level:

A person who has started running relatively recently and is not well versed in running terminology or the technical aspects of running such as physiology, nutrition, hydration, equipment, and various training methods.

  • Beginner is a very ambiguous term as someone could consider themselves a runner even if they have run for 10 years. It's a more personal labeling where someone won't consider themselves intermediate until maybe they get faster or can go longer distances.
  • Some will just use the term "recreational" runner as opposed to beginner/intermediate/advanced.
  • Use what term you feel most comfortable with and we will just help you with some guidelines that you may or may not agree with.

Intermediate

Starting Point: Where you are
• Typically run 4-6 times a week
• Average at least 15-25 miles a week
• Use running as more than a “fitness” tool
• Have run 6+ races from 5k’s to half marathons

Things to Learn: What to learn
• Pace
• How your body performs during various workouts and races
• Continue to work on nutrition for longer distances or faster times
• Target Heart Rate during workouts and races
• Strength training routine to strength full body and deter injury

To the Next Level: How to move up
• Increase mileage
• Add track workouts to your weekly training
• Work with a running coach
• Analyze gait

Events/Activities: What you should do
• Longer distance Races
• Join a track workout or running club
• Run with others that are slightly faster than you as long as you can without hindering their workout
• Work on setting PR’s at distance you determine you want to improve

More about the Intermediate Level:

A person who wants to improve their performance.  Also familiar with common running terminology and other aspects of running such as nutrition, hydration, equipment, and various running methods. You typically run four to six times a week, averaging 15-25 miles weekly training.

  • You probably also have run a half dozen or more races at distances between the 5-K and the Half-Marathon.
  • You may participate in track workouts or use a prescribed training schedule for your workouts to improve your times.
  • May start to quantify your runs in terms of miles instead of minutes.
  • Use running more than just a "fitness" tool.

Advanced

Starting Point: Where you are
• Running for at least 2-3 years
• Regularly run 30-40 miles
• Have run several races including half and full marathons or competes at a high level in a certain distance
• May place in local or national races

Things to Learn: What to learn
• How to run in all types of weather
• How much training you can handle before injury
• Strength training to improve your race times
• Flexibility training routine
• Proper nutrition before, during and after workouts and races

Events/Activities: What you should do
• Run races at your best race distance
• Work with a private coach
• Get regular massages

More about the Advanced Level:

A person who is a competitive runner that runs regularly 30-40 miles a week or more and has been running at least 2-3 years.  Has a vast knowledge of not only the technical aspects of running, but also how their body best performs in each of the aspects.

  • Has run several races including half and full marathons or competes at a high level in a certain distance.
  • May place in local or national races. 
  • Includes track workouts, fartleks, tempo and recovery runs in their weekly training schedule.