Running at 45

A group of older men running in the park

Started running

I started running when I was forty-two and for the first couple of years I was very much off and on, I managed to run 200km in 2020 and the same again in 2021. In 2022, I decided to take my running more seriously and let’s just say, 2022 was quite different to the previous two years. I ran 1285km.


So, what does running progress look like at 45? Well, slow and steady. I imagine this is true regardless of your age but as I can’t go back in time, all I can tell you about is what I know.

The Numbers

Below I’ve detailed some of the numbers so you can see my progress and how things have changed.

MetricJan 2022Dec 2022
Average pace across all runs6:15 / km5:19 / km
Average cadence across all runs158 spm168 spm
Average stride length1.05 m1.13 m
VO2 Max4550
Weight85 kg79 kg
Running progress at 45


I’d like to have gotten faster this year but that wasn’t ever going to happen. One of the most crucial factors for improving your running is sleep. With a 3-year-old who still refuses to sleep through the night, our own sleep has been poor for a while. We appear to be turning a corner, but we aren’t too hopeful just yet. Our other son started sleeping more consistently around the same age so who knows?

Where next?

I haven’t been working on speed, my goal for a while has been distance. I’m aiming to complete one or two ultramarathons this year. Later in the year with the ultramarathons under my belt, I will move to more speed work. In the short term I’d love to get my 5k down to 21mins and my 10km down to 46mins. These times aren’t outrageous, they are both times that my watch thinks I could achieve given the right conditions. I have a stretch goal for under 20mins, that may be pushing it, we will see.

I Ran 1000km in 2022

Running track with 1000 written on to signify the fact I run 1000km in 2022

I started running at forty-two and on telling my wife about my new soon-to-be obsession, she laughed at me! The idea of me running was funny but my wife should have known better. As per the title, at the time of this post I have run 1000km this year.

The beginning

The first two years did not go well. I ran around 200km in 2020 and the same again in 2021. I wasn’t very consistent and even though I got a little faster and hit some self-set milestones, I didn’t feel like a runner.

This year came with a change of mindset, I decided to become a runner. This was a me problem, everyone that runs is a runner. I ordered a new watch (Garmin 945 – thank you wife) and decided to start taking things more seriously. I was going to up my mileage and follow all the advice – run easy, build up gradually, warm up, you know the drill.

The new goal

I decided I needed a goal, so I set myself a goal that was challenging and yet seemed achievable. I was aiming to run a total of 400km in 2022, so doubling the mileage of the last two years.

I did not follow all the excellent running advice, none of us do. Slow easy running does help but I’m terrible for wanting to always hit a new personal best.

1000km of running

As of today, I’ve run 1000km, well 1067km. I’m well on target to triple the goal I set for myself at the start of year. I’ve taken 6 minutes off my 5km time, hitting 24 minutes and got my 10km time down to 52 minutes. The impressive part, to me at least, is that neither of those times are race times, they were set during training, and both started off easy. I’ve no idea what my go for broke times are.

I’m forty-six next year and before I get there, I’d like to get my 5km time down to 21 minutes and my 10km time down to sub 48 minutes. Both targets seem achievable and according to my watch I’d be able to hit those times today given perfect race conditions, so we’ll see, I guess.

Next year

Next year I don’t think I will be able to reach the same mileage. I’ve been freelancing this year and am free to run when I choose to as I can do my work any time of day. I’ll be contracting next year so it will be slightly more difficult to fit the runs in.

I’m aiming to enter two ultramarathons next year, both 50km. That’s a new challenge and I’m really looking forward to them. It’ll be a big step up for me as the longest single run I have done so far is 20km.

Early next year I will write a progress post explaining how I got on this year.