Guide To Track Workouts – How Many Laps is a Mile Around A Track

Athlete running on an all-weather running track alone. Runner sprinting on a blue rubberized running track starting off using a starting block.

Whether you’re trying to improve your conditioning or aiming to run a faster 5K, track workouts are a great addition to your running plan.

However, if you want to make the most out of your track workouts, knowing your track distance numbers and how far you’re actually running is key.

In today’s article, I’ve put together a guide to track laps around and how long one lap.

This should help you better understand—and measure—how far you’re running every time you’re training on a track.

Guide To Running Track Measures – The Test

Before we get into the actual distance of running one lap around a standard track, let’s first start with a little quiz and see how adept you are in track terminology.

Question 1: Does Running three laps around a 400-m track equals one mile?

Question 2: Does running seven laps in lane 3 equals two miles?

Question 3: Is a straightway 100-meter long?

Question 4: Are all lanes of a track of the same distance?

Question 5: Is a “metric mile” 1500M?

The answers: 1/No, 2/, 3/yes, 4/no, 5/yes.

So how did your answers stack up? If you got more wrongs than rights, then you should keep reading and give yourself some education to stay on track—no pun intended.

How Many Laps is a Mile Around A Track?

Although people (in imperial system countries) measure their run in miles and feet covered, most standard outdoor tracks and circuits use the metric system and tend to be 400 meters in length, which might be annoying if you just want to run a mile.

How long one lap depends on what kind of track you’re running.

A standard outdoor track is precisely 400 meters around the innermost lane.

Since a mile is 1600 meters, four laps around a standard track will amount to one mile.

The width of the standard track is divided into eight-lane and only lane 1, the interior most lane, is 400 meters in length. The farther out from lane 1 you go, the longer your distance will become.

So if you want to keep things simple, stick to the interior lane.

Since the standard track is 400 meters long, it makes it ideal for performing running intervals and even a tempo workout.

How Many Laps is a Mile Around A Track – The Exact Numbers

One mile equals 1,609 meters, which is roughly 5,280 feet.

Most standard outdoor tracks are designed such that lane 1 (the inner lane) is exactly 400 meters, which is about 1,312 feet.

The track distance increases in each length.

Each track lane has a standard width of 1.22 meters, so for every lane out from the center, the lap length goes up by roughly 7.67 meters or 25 feet. The distance you’d cover in lane 8 is 453 meters.

That’s why if you want to accurately measure your track running distance, you’ll need to do some math, but it doesn’t take too much to determine the number of circuits you’ll have to complete around the track in order to complete one mile.

Know your Distances

Getting your head around common track distances can help ensure that you’re making the most out of your track training and getting what you expect from your track workouts.

The running distances you choose should be within your reach and based on your current fitness ability. Don’t try to chew more than you can swallow.

Here are a few examples of setting you on the right path:

  • 100 meters – The length of each straightway and the shortest distance for an outdoor sprint.
  • 200 meters – Half lap around an outdoor track
  • 400 meters – roughly a quarter-mile, or one lap around a standard track
  • 600 meters – Half lap followed by one full lap
  • 800 meters – Roughly a half-mile or two laps around the track
  • 1200 meters – Roughly three-quarters of a mile or three laps around the track.
  • 1600 meters – Roughly one mile or four laps around the track.

Not All Lanes Are Equal

As I touch upon before, not all lanes are made equal.

The farther you go from the innermost lane, the farther you’ll be running, completing one lap. It’s the reason why you might see so many runners all trying to cram into lane one on a race.

So how long is each lap? Check the following:

Here the track distance by lane.

To help you with the calculation, here are the standard lengths of the lanes of a track:

  • Lane 1 – 400.0 meters
  • Lane 2 – 407.7 meters
  • Lane 3 – 415.3 meters
  • Lane 4 – 423.0 meters
  • Lane 5 – 430.7 meters
  • Lane 6 – 438.3 meters
  • Lane 7 – 446.0 meters
  • Lane 8 – 453.7 meters

Conclusion

There you have it! If you have ever wondered how many laps are one mile or any other track distances, then today’s post should get you started on the right path. The rest is just up to you.

Please feel free to leave your comments and questions down below.

In the meantime, thank you for dropping by.

Keep Training Strong

David D.