In training, i like to use laps or certain 5km or 10km loops, for me it helps pace my runs. It’s also a great mental help as i know where the start is and i know the finish line. For pacing your runs this can be useful as you know where you need to be or what time you should be at for specific points in your run.
Don’t get me wrong i love going on an adventure run around routes i don’t know so well, sometimes though that can slow pace a little so i tend to do that when on my longer runs.
From beginners to advanced runners laps can be a way to boost speed, threshold and hit some PB’s. Mentally its easier, all you have to do is run the lap, start and get yourself to the finish. Use laps to keep at threshold pace, go for a PB or just use it to pace yourself better. Get used to the lap you’re running so you know where to push, know when to slow down and know when to sprint finish.
Depending on the distance of the lap you find will ultimately define what you use it for. For speed and threshold you’re generally going to want some shorter laps, 1-3km so you can push hard and hold on! For PB loops or on your 5-10km speed day (if thats in your training plan) its going to be better to have 5 or 10km loops.
Give it ago and let us know how you get on!