As a word of caution - you don't want to push speed too fast with running, that can lead to injuries. And if a mile is about all you can run now (or, at least, at anywhere near that pace), you're definitely better off working on distance (or just thinking of going for a number of minutes without thinking about speed or distance) for a while before really thinking of speed. The advice for new runners is definitely to not even think about speed except perhaps to slow down. Then again, maybe you're not a new runner and can run much further etc.
Now, if you do want a goal to shoot for (While still focusing on personal improvement!), fitness tests for various militaries etc. can provide stuff to shoot for, like below; the army minimum standard for your age group is 18:54 for a 2 mile run. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Army_Physical_Fitnes s_Test
Fitness Minutes: (10,959)
1,120 1/28/10 9:46 P
Back when I was racing regularly (about 15 years ago), a 7 - 7.5 minute mile was an exceptional pace for a recreational (but very serious) female racer.
An 8 minute mile was good and would normally put you in the top 4th of the 10K race results in the races I ran in.
A 9 minute mile would put you in the top 3rd...and a 10 minute mile would put you at about the middle of the pack in terms of RUNNERS (if you count walkers, much higher, of course).
I don't know how long you've been running, but if you are running 10 minute miles - especially if you can keep that pace over a 10K, you are doing pretty well. You are not going to win any races...but it is certainly a respectable time that you can be proud of as a fitness runner.
Thanks for the encouragement, guys! The links were helpful too. I think I am going to set my medium-term milestone for 9:00 and my long-term milestone for 8:00 so I can have something to strive for.
1/25/10 12:33 P
You're too cute! That's funny. Everybody's time will be different. 10 minutes is great! Definitely set your own goals. Back in high school I ran 8 minute miles. Now I am better at 7:30 minute miles. Just keep building your strength and pushing through the plateau.
Fitness Minutes: (20,294)
1,426 1/25/10 12:27 P
Since you do 10 now I bet you could do 8 minute miles once you get to your goal weight.
Fitness Minutes: (19,305)
155 1/25/10 12:01 P
You should aim for what YOUR goals are. Over time you will get faster and be able to run run greater distances at those speeds. The key is to keep pushing yourself by setting realistic attainable goals. Once you reach the goal set a new one.
The thing is it needs to be YOUR goal and do not ever subject yourself to the terrible TOOS. Just because John Dough can run a 6 minute mile doesn't mean you can or should TOO. When you try to compare your level to others you are destined for disappointment.
Running is an individual sport and the goals need to be defined for each individual.
Fitness Minutes: (299,303)
1/25/10 10:04 A
A ten minute mile is an extremely respectable time for a non competitive runner.
An elite woman marathoner can run 26.2 miles in roughly 2 hrs and 20 minutes. that's about a 5 minute 30 second mile. That's an elite woman marathoner.
The current world record for a mile by a woman is 4:12.56. I'm amazed at how fast some women can run.
That 10 min mile sounds like a good time to me. You are burning some serious calories and plugging along at a swift pace. That's about what I run my miles at. Any faster for now..I couldn't log the mileage that I do. Slow n steady wins the race for me.
I've seen a couple different charts about run times (among other fitness measurements), but they may not really be what you're looking for.
This first one is specific to law enforcement and is percentile based (for a 1.5 mile run, not a 1 mile run) and disregards gender. Scroll down to pg 2 of the .pdf file to see the chart. A 10:07 mile time would probably translate to roughly a 16:30 1.5 mile time (since you won't be able to maintain the same pace over a 50% greater distance.) That puts you in the 15% percentile based on that chart.
This one is more of a series of benchmarks for what would be considered a "Healthy Beginner" according to the Crossfit community and it also disregards gender for everything except the raw strength benchmarks. For Level 1 ("Healthy Beginner") it's a 9 min mile. This link explains a little about what they consider each level to be. To see the list of benchmarks clicks on the appropriate link in the box. These benchmarks are widely used in the Crossfit community as a measure of fitness.
In general, unless you have a specific goal in mind what you really should be looking for is consistent improvement over time and remember that a fast run time doesn't mean you're fit...it just means you're fast.
I have been scouring the internet for a table that shows what the average time is for a woman to run a mile but there is absolutely nothing out there on the subject! I am 19, 5'5", and 165 lbs. My mile time is 10:07. Is that good? What time should I be aiming for?