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10K Training Plan

10K is favorite running distance world over. Our plans are tailored based on where you stand today.

Some key terms used in the plan that you should know about:

1) Rest :Rest means just what it is Rest. It means doing nothing in particular and going through your usual day routine. Rest is very critical yet often ignored part of training plan. Rest allows your muscle to recover and every time that happens your muscles get stronger.

2) Run :Run means business. It means you are on the move, putting one step after another. The thumb rule about the running pace is that you should run a 'conversational pace'; which means you should be able to talk while running.

3) Run/Walk : This means you can do a mix of running and walking. Ideally, you run till you are tired and then switch to walking. Repeat this routine again.

4) Walk :Well, this is easy. It means you have to walk.

5) Cross : Cross means cross training. It is any aerobic activity other than running. It can be cycling, swiming, session in the gym etc. This is to give your muscle a different form of movement and break the potential boredom.

6) Strength : Strenght means strenght training. It means exercises designed to improve the flexibility and strenght of your key muscles. It could be acitivites like push-ups, pull-ups, planks, squats and any other form of Plyometric exercise. This clearly does not mean pumping irons in the gym.

7) Tempo Runs:A continuous run with an easy beginning, a buildup in the middle to near 10-K race pace, then ease back and cruise to the finish. A typical tempo run would begin with 5-10 minutes easy running, continue with 10-15 faster running, and finish with 5-10 minutes cooling down. You can't figure out your pace on a watch doing this workout; you need to listen to your body. Tempo runs are very useful for developing anaerobic threshold, essential for fast 5-K racing.

Week Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat Sun
1 Stretch strength 4.0 km run 30 min cross training 3.2km run
+ strength
Rest 40 min cross training 4.8 km run
2 Stretch strength 4.0 km run 30 min cross training 3.2km run + strength Rest 40 min cross training 5.5 km run
3 Stretch strength 4.0 km run 35 min cross training 3.2km run + strength Rest 50 min cross training 6.5 km run
4 Stretch strength 4.8 km run 35 min cross training 3.2km run + strength Rest 50 min cross training 6.5 km run
5 Stretch strength 4.8 km run 40 min cross training 3.2km run + strength Rest 60 min cross training 7 km run
6 Stretch strength 4.8 km run 40 min cross training 3.2km run + strength Rest 60 min cross training 8 km run
7 Stretch strength 4.8 km run 45 min cross training 3.2km run + strength Rest 60 min cross training 9 km run
8 Stretch strength 4.8 km run 30 min cross training 6.5 km run Rest Rest 10-K Race

Intermediate – wanting to improve your time (1mile =1.6km)

Advanced – looking for peak performance in the race (1mile =1.6km)

 VO2 max is a term commonly used by runners to assess your body’s efficiency in processing atmospheric oxygen. It is the maximum volume (V) of oxygen (O2) in milliliters that you can use in one minute, per kilogram of body weight, while breathing air at sea level.

 Knowing your VO2 Max is good for those keen on testing and improving on their personal fitness. Still others will use that piece of information to assess how they compare to others (“standards”) who are doing their same sport. By knowing what your current VO2 Max is, you can objectively assess your progress as you improve your cardiovascular fitness.

 VO2 Max of an average male 20-29 years of age is: 38-43.

 VO2 Max of endurance cyclists or runners: >75 ml/kg/min.

 Highest VO2 Max ever recorded for a man: 94 (Nordic skier)

 Highest VO2 Max for a women: 77 (Also Nordic skier)

 Check out your VDOT level from your most recent ‘race’ and try and approximate pace for longer or shorter distances as your ‘race pace. See this table

To improve your stamina, pace and VO2 MAX try this simple 7 week plan:

Week Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday
1. 30 - 45 mins cross training Run/Walk 5km 3 repeats 400m Temp run 30 mins Rest 4 km medium pace long slow run 6 km
2. 30 - 45 mins cross training Run/Walk 5km 4 repeats 400m Temp run 40 mins Rest 4 km medium pace long slow run 7 km
3. 30 - 45 mins cross training Run/Walk 5km 5 repeats 400m Temp run 45 mins Rest 5 km medium pace long slow run 8 km
4. 30 - 45 mins cross training Run/Walk 5km 4 repeats 400m Temp run 40 mins Rest 4 km medium pace long slow run 7 km
5. 30 - 45 mins cross training Run/Walk 5km 5 repeats 400m Temp run 45 mins Rest 4 km medium pace long slow run 8 km
6. 30 - 45 mins cross training Run/Walk 5km 6 repeats 400m Temp run 50 mins Rest 4 km medium pace long slow run 9 km
7. 30 - 45 mins cross training Run/Walk 5km 4 repeats 400m Temp run 30 mins Rest 6 km medium pace long slow run 10 km

Cross Train – aerobic exercise other than running – cycling, swimming, tennis, squash

400m repeats – warm up with a slow run of 1-2 km, run a 400m race flat out, walk.jog 1-2 minutes and regain your heart and breathing rate, repeat the 400m race and so on. End with a 1-2km slow run

Tempo run – divide your run into thirds eg in a 30 minute tempo run, start with a 10 minute slow run, start picking up pace over the next 4 minutes and hold your fastest pace for a couple of minutes, then reduce pace gradually over the next 4 minutes, and then end with a 10 minute slow run.

Long slow run – should be done at a pace where you can converse with a running partner and not be out of breath In the training programs where there is a mention of running at 5K pace or 10K pace – you need to check your ‘race pace’ for that distance, especially if you have never run one before or have not run one in a long time, by seeing your timing for the most recent race you have run, and see what your VO2 max is and what your time in a shorter or longer distances could be extrapolated to.

To keep track of your progress and see how you are unleashing your potential, print out the table below and surprise yourself.