Struggling with BUPA 10k training plan

Hello all.

 I'm a 31 year old bloke who's new to running but I aim to do the Cardiff 10k in September. I've been following the BUPA 5k begginer and it all went well. I'm now on the beginner 10k and am starting to struggle and the isue seems to be my recovery.

 I can complete the 2 x 18mins intervals on the Tuesday if rested but really struggle when asked to repeat on the Thursday. I seem to have lots of little 'pulls' in my calves or groin and my energy levels are low. Any ideas as to how I can impove my recovery/cope with the demands of what seems a basic training programme?



  • Phil can you post the schedule?  That sounds like a lot of intervals for a beginnners 10k to me. 

    In terms of general recovery, rest and decent sleep is important.  The sleep  rule seems to be an extra minute a night per mile a week you are running.  So 20 miles a week - 20 extra mins sleep a night.   Also a decent balanced diet is important, a good mix of carbs and protien.

    If you are getting niggles rather than aches, it may be worth seeing a phsyio and making sure you've got the right shoes.  A trip to proper running shop, not a JJB etc, should be able to tell you about shoes.

    Training when tired can lead to injury and illness.  Nothing wrong with taking a day or 2 off to recover. 

  • Here's the BUPA 10k beginner's schedule;

  • Thanks Polly - different interpretation of intervals.

    Schedule looks ok.  Couple of other thoughts Phil are you doing the runs too fast?  You should be running at a pace where you can hold a conversation.  Secondly, are you stretching after each run?  

  • Thanks for the help Polly and BDB.

     I've had my gait analysed and bought some Aisics 2150 which I'm getting on well with. My diet is ok, though I know I can make improvements here. I am stretching after a run, particulaly important for me I'd guess as I'm so un-supple.

    I didn't know about the sleep so I will try to get some more in.  As an idea of pace I'm covering about 4 miles in two 15 minute runs with a 2 minute walking break inbetween. I could well be running too fast, I've not tried to hold a conversation so will try that, might look a bit weird talking to myself in the park but never mind!

  • Just another point. I've noticed that my recovery seems better if I've run on a treadmill rather than the road. I don't know if the greater impact of road running is having an effect. I do most of my running on the road as I want to replicate the 10k race conditions as much as possible.
  • Phil - instead of holding a conversation, I see if I can sing a song/nursery rhyme out loud (but not soooo loud others can hear). If I am struggling with that i know I need to slow my pace down.
  • Phil, would you say that the pace you're running at is close to your race pace?  If so, you're going much too fast.  7:30 mm is pretty quick for training runs, so try and slow it down.
  • If you are running 4 miles in 32 minutes (which includes a walk break) I would also say that you are going much too fast for a beginner (given that you are finding it a struggle to recover enough to repeat it 2 days later).

     I would definitely try and slow it down or I think you may well struggle more as you move further through the training plan.

  • Nothing wrong with mixing it up with a few treadmill runs.  It is less impact as they are sprung.  I have done a lot of treadmill running, usually about a third os my marathon training miles are done on them.  Some say to put up the incline, but I don't bother.  You're working your heart and the rest of your body on the flat.  Your times will be quicker on a treadmill though, so bear that in mind.
  • Right, I can hold a conversation at that sort of pace. However, I'd say it was maybe above race pace as I my aim is to dip under 60mins. I'll slow it down on the next run, even though it'll feel like I'm really plodding!

    Won't be for a while though as I'v done something to my ankle/lower calf. Looks like I've fallen into to 'too much, too soon, too quickly' camp. image

  • The schedule reminds me more of a Galloway-type schedule - the man who promotes run-walk training, even for sub 4 hr marathon training -  the sessions are not intervals, they are run-walk days to make sure absolutely everyone at beginner level can complete the day's training and then the schedule. There are no time, HR or speed targets tha I can see in the little jpg. It sounds like you might be better than that level already. How about looking at some of the RW 10 km programmes on this site?
  • Well, I tried running tonight after 4 days rest and the ankle/lower calf is still giving me jip on impact. It's only mild doscomfort so do I:

    a. Run through it

    b. Reduce training

    c. Stop running

    If I do stop running for a bit I am concerned I'll miss my 10k schedule. Is there a way to make up time?

  • Phil - have you seen a physio?  It could be anything so any advice we offer could do you more harm.  So go get it checked out.

    Don't worry about making time up.  If possible, cross train to keep your fitness going.  The cross trainer if you can get to gym is good - low impact and gives a decent workout, or swimming.  When you can run again, just start at the point in the schedule for that date.  If you're out for a few weeks, maybe cut the schedule back for a week or so, substituting some runs with cross training.  Coming back from injury too soon can send you straight back to the bench.  We've all done it.

  • I haven't seen a physio yet. I'm resting until Monday, whilst cross training, and will try running again on Monday. If it's still not working for me I'll see a physio and abandon my hopes of the Cardiff 10k.
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