Although most adult runners focus on race distances like 5k, 10k, half marathon, or marathon, plenty of high school and collegiate runners, as well as open and masters athletes who enter track meets, push the pace with the 1,000-meter race.
However, because it’s not as common to find 1000m races, it can be hard to figure out what a good 1000m time is or even what the current average is.
Of course, as with any race distance, a good 1000m depends on several factors, such as age, sex, and fitness level. That being said, having a ballpark idea of a good 1000m time for your age, sex, and fitness level can give you a benchmark to shoot for and help you compare your performance and set reasonable running goals.
Below, we will take a look at what a good 1000m is time, based on your age and sex, the average time to run 1000m, and how to improve your 1000m time.
In this guide, we will look at:
- How long is 1000m?
- What are the current fastest 1000m records?
- What is a good 1000m time?
- What factors can impact your 1000m time?
- What is the average time to run 1000m by age and sex?
- 3 tips for improving your 1000m time
Are you ready to see how you stack up?
Let’s dive in!
How long is 1000m?
As the name suggests, 1000m is one-thousand meters or 0.621 miles.
On a standard 400-meter track, the 1000m race is exactly 2.5 laps, so it starts on the far 200-meter line, runs two full laps, then finishes the final half lap to end at the standard finish line.
On a 200-meter indoor track, the 1000m race is five full laps.
What are the Current Fastest 1000m Records?
Let’s look at the 1000m world records and see how impressive the fastest athletes are.
Kenyan runner, Noah Ngeny, holds the Men’s Outdoor 1000m record, which is a blistering 2:11.96. Ngeny has held the 1000m world record since September 5, 1999.
The Men’s Indoor 1000m record is slower, at 2:14.20. This 1000m world record is held by Ayanieh Souleiman from Djibouti and was set on February 17, 2016.
The Women’s Outdoor 1000m record is a blazing 2:28.98, a record held by Russian runner Svetlana Masterkova since August 23, 1996.
The Women’s Indoor 1000m record, which is held by a runner named Maria de Lurdes Mutola from Mozambique, is 2:30.94. It was set in Stockholm, Sweden on February 25, 1993
What is a Good 1000m Time?
Now that our jaws have dropped in awe of these incredible athletes, let’s look at what a good 1000m time is for everyday runners.
Unfortunately, unlike many other popular race distances, there isn’t much information about the average time to run 1000m by age and sex. For example, Running Level, which calculates running times based on age and ability, has standard times for distances starting at one mile and ranging up to 100 miles, but there is nothing available for 1000m.
Similar sites also lack data for what a good 1000m time is.
That said, it’s possible to determine a good 1000m time by using the data for “good” mile times and plugging them into a race predictor calculator to scale back to the 1000m distance.
Running Level reports that a good mile time for a male is 6:37, and a good mile time for a female is 7:44. These times are based on an intermediate-level runner.
We can estimate a good 1000m time by plugging these mile times into a Race Finish Time Predictor such as the one from SportTracks.
These calculators use a benchmark finish time for a certain distance and then extrapolate an estimated finish time or another race distance. This is done by scaling the finish time from your previous performance to the new distance and adjusting up or down accordingly based on that new distance.
For example, when we plug in the 6:37 mile time for males taken from Running Level, SmartTracks determines an equivalently good 1000m time to be 4:00.
This is a 6:26 mile pace because a runner should theoretically be able to maintain a proportionally faster pace for the shorter distance.
Therefore, using these loose estimates and conversions, a good 1000m time for males is 4:00 (6:26 pace per mile) and a good 1000m time for females is 4:40 (7:31 pace per mile).
Again, these times are based on an intermediate-level runner.
What Factors Can Impact Your 1000m Time?
There are three primary factors that impact your 1000m run time: your age, sex, and fitness level.
Younger runners are still developing and improving, and older runners typically notice performance declines, primarily due to age-related sarcopenia (loss of muscle mass), which reduces strength.
However, the good news is that although you may be past your prime running years, the decline in running performance is very gradual and many masters, veterans, and senior runners continue to train and race competitively for life.
Never let your age count you out of setting goals, doing structured speed work, and running races.
When it comes to sex, male runners usually outperform female runners due to having more lean body mass and a higher percentage of fast-twitch muscle fibers.
Finally, your fitness level certainly plays a major role in dictating your 1000m race time. Of course, the fitter you are, the faster you can run.
Most importantly, unlike your age and sex, which are uncontrollable factors, you can train and increase your fitness level to improve your 1000m run time.
What Are The Current Average 1000m Times By Age And Sex?
We’ve established the fastest 1000m times and good 1000m run times, but now let’s dive in further and break down the average time to run 1000m by sex and age group to see what a good 1000m time is for each range.
We will focus on runners who are at an intermediate running level, but you can click here to calculate your specific running level based on your current times.
Because there is a dearth of data specifically looking at the average time to run 1000m by age and sex, we will use the average mile times and convert them to 1,000m times using the Race Finish Time Predictor from SmartTracks. This is the same process we used to determine our good 1000m times.
If you determine that your current fitness level categorizes you as something other than an intermediate runner, you can calculate the average time to run 1000m based on your level by looking up the average mile times for beginners and more advanced runners here, and then convert these miles times to 1000m here to estimate the average 1000m time for your age, sex, and fitness level.
Now for the data:
Average 1000m Times for Males (Intermediate Level)
|Age||1000m Finish Time||Pace Per Mile|
Average 1000m Times for Females (Intermediate Level)
|Age||1000m Finish Time||Pace Per Mile|
Now that we are familiar with the averages, let’s jump into how we can go about improving our personal best so we can set a new record!
3 Tips for Improving Your 1000m Time
So, how do you improve your 1000m run time? Here’s where your fitness level comes in. By training, you can get faster and improve your 1000m time.
The 1000m race is all about maintaining you near your top speed for the duration of the race. In other words, compared to distance running events, the 1000m is all about speed.
Here are three tips to improve your 1000m run time:
#1: Run Strides
After a distance run or aerobic workout, run 4-6 strides, anywhere from 50-100m long. Run all out while maintaining proper running form, focusing on quick turnover, a powerful arm swing, and a strong hip and knee drive.
#2: Lift Weights
Strength training helps you build strength and power, enabling you to run more efficiently. It can also help prevent injuries. Add in a couple of days of running-specific strength training per week to your training plan for results.
#3: Speed Work Makes the Dream Work
Intervals and speed workouts will train your body to handle faster paces and can improve your lactate threshold, meaning you can sustain a faster running pace without fatigue.
Inspired to run fast? Take it to the track and time yourself on a 1000m run today.
If you are looking to add strength training into your training, check out our weightlifting for runners guide!