My challenge + Let’s talk about cadence!

(seamless leggings, top, shoes, socks & I haven’t talked about my favorite hair bands for a while, so I will now… they have been life-changing for my hair).

Nine miles @ 8:05 average with my friend Jo + 10 minutes of strength.

Beck gave me the silent treatment because he heard Andrew and me talking about our trip without him coming up…

Skye makes errands so much more fun.

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Andrew has her heart.

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Beretta turned 10 yesterday which was a big deal at our house and we celebrated her all day long.

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I lose a lot of things (often) but somehow I have managed to keep track of this Polly Pocket set for 30 years now.

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Roasted broccoli and baked potatoes with ground turkey/cheese/sour cream made the appearance for dinner.

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One of the most challenging tasks is painting Skye’s nails… She always wants me to paint them but she says her nails are ticklish so she wiggles and laughs the entire time.

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One of my absolute favorite Amazon purchases.

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The other day Torrie asked about Cadence, so let’s chat about it, and I would love to learn from you about this subject too!

Cadence is the number of steps (counting both feet) that you take in a minute.   It is generally said that the goal is to hit somewhere between 170-180 steps per minute during a run, but it is important to remember that each runner is an individual with individual needs, and that number can vary depending on your pace too.

I love to talk in bullet point format to cover a subject because my thoughts are usually just all over the place!

*Increasing your cadence (or shortening your stride) is shown to help avoid injuries because it can decrease the stress on the hip and knee joints!  But I also get a little nervous about switching things up TOO much because why fix something that isn’t broken?  If you have been running injury-free and you are progressing in your speed and endurance, I feel like your body is doing just what it needs.  Maybe making small changes (a 5% increase is best) can help but doing anything drastically different in your training may cause an injury.

From my RRCA coaching handbook… Not all bodies benefit from a faster cadence, but it could help reduce injuries.

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*Taller runners can have a lower cadence than shorter runners.  I’m not sure if I am considered a tall runner (I’m right under 5’9”), but it is a random fact that I came across when researching about this.

*It is SO much easier for me to naturally hit close to 180 when I am doing speedwork.  This cadence below was from a 6:00 mile I did two weeks ago, and I didn’t even think once about my cadence, it just felt natural to hit 178.  On the other hand, when I am running easy or on the trails, my cadence is much lower naturally… the main reason I would like to try to quicken my cadence a tiny bit while running on trails or easy runs is because I’ve read a few places that said it might help prevent plantar fasciitis (<—the injury I have struggled with recently) but who knows.

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*John shared this article, ‘Kenyans, Cadence, and Ground Contact Time’ and it is a great read on this topic.  When studying these elite Kenyan runners, he found that when they were running at their slow pace, most of them were running in the 160s for their cadence, but when they were running at their fast speed, their cadence was much higher (some over 200)!

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*More on the above topic… when we are running easy, it is normal to have a lower cadence than running faster!

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*If you are looking to increase your cadence (remember to make SMALL adjustments), this article includes some apps that can help you while you run to increase your cadence!  I have put together playlists with faster songs included in the past, which always help me improve my cadence.  You could start by including segments in your runs where you simply move your legs faster for 20 seconds to get your body used to it a bit more.  I’ve used a metronome on the treadmill before when I was once working on my cadence.  My coach in 2019 had us do a lot of downhill speed to help us to increase our cadence, and that is explained here:

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I would love to hear from you on this topic—> Do you pay attention to your cadence?  Is it something you have changed over the years?  Does your watch tell you your cadence info?

How tall are you?

If you have a dog(s), how old are they?

Kept any toys/things from your childhood?

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Hi Janae. I love the leggings. I see they are 7/8 length (26″) and you are 5’9 – do you find them long enough? I am tall (5’11) and would generally stay away from anything not full length. Thanks.


HEY Sarah! For me they are perfectly long enough… but I’m not sure about you! Nordstrom does have the easiest return process ever though just in case you want to try them out. They are currently my favorite pair of leggings. I didn’t even realize they are 7/8 length until your comment. Have a happy Monday!


I don’t pay much attention to cadence, but the few times I have focused on it, I tend to use music and try to sync up my steps per minute to a song’s beats per minute. It can be a fun challenge if you have the right playlist. I’m 5’5 and don’t have a very long stride, so I’d guess my cadence is average. My dog Molly is 11 and 1/2 (she’ll be 12 this July), and we always make a big deal for her birthday! Happy birthday, Beretta! I don’t have any toys from my childhood, but I do have a few stuffed animals and a ton of books! Happy Tuesday!


Music really does help so much with our cadence, it’s amazing. Molly is 11.5!? Wow, you have had her for so long and I bet she is already looking forward to her birthday. Thank you friend and I hope your Tuesday is a great one too!


The cadence question is fascinating! I’m 5’3.5″ (at my height the 1/2 inch matters), and I’m always over 180 for average, even on easy runs. It’s not something I work on, and during speed my cadences increases, sometimes over 200.

Happy Birthday, Beretta!


Your cadence is QUICK! You would be keeping up with those Kenyans! Thanks, Margie and I hope your day is a beautiful one.


I have a stuffed animal monkey named Mergatroid from when I was a baby. I also have a teddy bear from my dad’s parents, a cabbage patch kid from 1980 when all the parents were getting into fist fights over them, a creepy clown doll that my mom made me, and a stuffed rabbit named Carrie Ann that was my best friend for years. No real toys; just stuffed animals.
I have two dogs. One will turn three next month and the other will be 16 in May. We make a big deal of their birthdays. they get presents and special treats and lots of belly rubs.
I don’t really pay attention to cadence. I’m 5’3″ so I know I have a short stride. I fight runners’ knee from overstriding down hills. I pay attention to where my heel and knee are when my foot hits the ground which I’m guessing will increase my cadence since I’m taking shorter steps.
Have a great Tuesday!!


You have a cabbage patch kid from 1980?! That is amazing. I remember my mom telling me about those fights when she was trying to get one for my sister. Love that you still have those stuffed animals. I love how you celebrate your dogs, they are so lucky to have you. That is interesting about how your stride changes going downhill, I have a lot of friends that have the same problem! Great job keeping up on that and paying attention. Hope your day is a great one. Thanks Lee!


My cadence is pretty slow so my husband bought me airpods a few years ago and I always listen to music (in one ear) in the 180 bpm range. I never get my cadence that high but it has increased. I am just shy of 5’7″. I heard that what sports you did as a child also influences cadence. Not sure I buy into that as I was in basketball, which required quick bursts of speed, and was a sprinter in track. Classic YMMV.

We have two dogs – an almost 13 yo German Shorthaired Pointer and a Vizsla that just turned 7.

I have a couple of tractors as well as some stuffed animals that my mom made me. I also have a cabbage patch kid from the first time they were popular.


I love that the music has helped you! Oh that is so interesting about childhood sports effecting our cadence as adults, I believe it! Do you take your Vizsla running with you?! Love that you still have the tractors, stuffed animal and cabbage patch kid. That is awesome! Have a great day, Jackie!


Good Morning!
I have a quick question, what socks do you wear with your hoka shoes during the day?


Hey Mary! Great question… I always wear my favorite no show socks with sneakers throughout the day. They feel awesome with the hokas. Have a beautiful day!


Jason Fitzgerald recent had a Q&A podcast episode where he talked about cadence, and he said your cadence typically will be slower when your pace is slower. So I don’t think 180 is feasible all the time. I know you just had PF, but your case might really be an example of “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” Like you said, your cadence is pretty high when you do speed work so maybe it’s fine right where it is. It’s definitely an interesting subject though!


Ohhhh I have to check out that episode! That is really so true… thanks for sharing. Hoping the PF was just a random event! Hope your day is a great one, thanks Jenny!


We have two dogs Bruno will be 3 in March a 60 lb lab/shepherd mix and Chance is 6 and is an almost 90 lbs pit mix. I used to run with Chance before we got Bruno but he now has a bad knee. So now we just walk and sometimes I run with Bruno who has loads of energy. they are both pretty much my favorite thing on the planet beside my human family :D Although my kids say Chance is my favorite child ;)


I love their names… they are both so big! Hahah I love what your kids say about Chance. Sounds like the perfect mix of humans and dogs:). Hope your day is a great one, Amy!


My garmin likes to pick up cadence instead of heart rate a lot of the times, and my “heart rate” is always in the 170s-180s haha. I worked on a cadence a little bit after my PR marathon and I think it probably helped! I feel like it helps with form a lot. But I agree, little changes over huge ones if you’re not getting injured!
I’m also just under 5’9! :)
My dog will be 2 just around mother’s day! I love Berretta’s expressions.
Oh man, Polly Pocket!!!! I need to see if I have my old set!!!!!


I swear my Garmin heart rate is always SO off! We are height twins. I just better get to go on a run with you one day! Haha Beretta is always a little nervous when Beck is around. I hope you find the Polly Pockets and happy almost birthday to your pup! Have a great day, Mollie!


Oh sweet Beretta! Happy birthday.
We have a dog who is 15 1/2. He’s really slowing down a lot, but he’s still a sweetie.
I have never really paid attention to my cadence, so it would be really interesting to do that. I have been working on having “quick feet” when I do speed work, rather than lengthening my stride (something I learned from Tina Muir’s together runs ?). I’m 5’6″, so average I guess? Such an interesting topic to think about.
Oooo… You and Andrew are taking a trip without kids? Fun!! And so good!
Have a good day Janae!


I didn’t know your dog was 15.5 years old! Wow! YES to quick feet… that helps my cadence and speed so much! YES, we are SO SO READY! We will miss them but it’s been way too long ha. Hope your day is a great one, Wendy! Thanks!


Playlists are everything for my cadence work. I will put songs that are in the 170-180 beats per minute range and just run to the beat. It makes running so much more fun and also helps so much with cadence! Have a great day and happy 10th to B :)


YES!! Music seriously helps so much. I want your playlists. Hope your day is off to a great start! Thanks Katrina!


love this…my head explodes whenever I talk shortening the stride rather than worrying about heel strike, just don’t over stride….I’m 6 ft tall, used to be 6′ 2″, but I’m now only 6, apparently we shrink as we get older
My Garmin 945 does count my foot strikes……..the best thing about doing what I do, wearing running gear all of the time! lol


Yessssss the main problem is overstriding and that causes a lot of injuries! Haha I that is a huge plus, running gear is the best! Hope you have a great day, Warren.


Hi Janae! I’m a few inches shorter than you. I hit high 170s regularly for my cadence and when doing speed work I can go up to the high 190s! I used to look for music with a specific BPM but I think just listening to music that makes me happy just makes me run faster.
Have a great day!


Look at that cadence… amazing! Music really does help so much. Thanks friend, you too!


I’m all about injury prevention; thanks for including those articles! Just checked my run from this morning, which was a typical, mostly-easy paced 5 miler, and according to my trusty Garmin I averaged 177. Coming back from a knee injury I’ll be paying more attention to this!
I’m just shy of 5’5″!
Happy belated to Beretta! Our vizsla is 8 (we think) and our mini schnauzer is 6!


Look at you rocking that cadence even on your easy runs! So happy you are back after your knee injury. Your pups are so lucky to have you! Thanks Molly!


Hi Janae!! It’s been a while since I commented, but I ALWAYS read!! Happy Birthday to Beretta :o) No dogs here, but my cats tend to live a looooong time. The last one who passed away was 23! My current cat just turned 5, so he has a ways to go.
I am 5’3″ and don’t pay a lot of attention to cadence. It’s quicker when I run at a faster speed and slower at slower speeds. We did spend some time on cadence at one of the running group sessions last summer, but I just took it in and let it go. My primary goal now is consistency, so I will take whatever cadence my body gives me on a given day LOL!
I don’t have any actual toys from childhood, but I do still have a wooden rocking chair I got when I was 2. I also still have a night stand and a sewing box, both of which my dad made for me when I was around 8 or so. They have lived in a lot of different places with me! Have an awesome day, Janae!!


Thank you so much for doing this post, Janae! I really enjoyed it! I’m also 5’9″ and on easy runs I average around a 169 cadence but will go up to mid 170’s during speedwork. I was thinking maybe I needed to work at it but I’m injury free and feeling good so I think I will leave it alone!

No dogs over here but we have a 2 year old cat!

My daughter loves Polly Pockets and I wish I had kept mine from childhood!! I kept my Playmobil sets and both my kiddos love playing with those!


How cool that you still have your Polly Pocket set! I still lug around my Nintendo 64.

Happy Birthday, Beretta! I have three dogs, the mama Remi (7), the papa Blue (6) and their baby Panda (4). Love my little pack.


Hey there – have you tried Colorstreet for nails? One set would be enough for you to do your nails, Skye’s AND Brooke’s? I still do gel manicures frequently, but for those interim times, I love colorstreet. =) Have a beautiful day!


Try Color Street for Skye! WAY better for doing little’s nails than liquid polish!


My dog is 17! Can’t hear or see too much, but still keeps on keeping on!


I don’t pay attention to my cadence but maybe I should try? It just seems overwhelming to try think about it!

I’m 5’2 so just small. My 5 year old the other day told me I am ‘as tall as a big kid, like a grown up girl’ ?? he followed that up with ‘you’re too tiny to be an adult’ I think because he’s comparing me to my husband who is 6’3 he keeps me laughing all day long!


Thank sharing this article and help us information talk about cadence

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