10k race in 7 weeks

I have completed one 10k race so far (which was not a PB course, very hilly etc) and got 1h 14mins, so I am probably looking at a bit less at the moment but I would ideally like to get under an hour. 

7 weeks of training left, what should I be doing to improve my speed? I can usually do 2-3 runs a week. 5k park run on Saturdays (time 34mins which isn't great). 

Any ideas?


  • Get a programme that includes speed work and, ultimately, swing your arms faster.
  • Thanks...

  • It's true, arms set the tempo of the legs. Use the smart coach on here and it'll give you a lovely little schedule designed around the number of days you want to train and how hard you want it to be. GOOD LUCK! If you are regularly parkrunning then you should be able to get around a 10km with no probs in 7 weeks' time. You will be able to improve speed quite significantly if you aren't currently doing any speedwork, but to do 1hr14 is pretty good if your 5k is 34 mins. If you can get that 5km time down, then the 1 hour 10km will come, but you'll need to be looking at close to 26mins for the 5k before you get down to 60 over 10km. 

  • Stevie  GStevie G ✭✭✭

    Grace, in that 2-3 runs a week, what's the total mileage? Only around the 10miles or so, or more?

    You certainly don't need to be messing around with any speedwork or fancy stuff, you simply need to get that mileage up... as slow as you like, but mileage up.

    Then that 34min 5k will come crashing down like noone's business.


  • From my personal POV - I started running last July and my 5k times were around the same as yours - I didn't run more than 3 times a week and not much more then 2 to 3 miles each time. I started adding a bit longer mileage 4 - 5 every couple of weeks and did a 10K walk/run (90 mins). I entered my first 10K last October (Scarborough) and got a time of 61.5 mins (a little gutted that I was over the hour), but really happy that I had achived a completed race. I again only ran 2 or 3 times a week again only 2 or 3 miles at a time and ran my next 10K in Edinburgh this May getting 60' 16'' (this was a very hilly run and really hot day) again a little gutted that I missed the hour. I ran my next 10K last month in Harrogate (again quite not a flat course) and managed at time of 54' 55''. My next 10K is Wetherby next month so hoping to shave a little more of my PB.

    So what I think I am trying to say is that everyone is different - I don't do tempo/speed or intervals. I don't run every week, I don't do lots of miles, but in less than a year I shaved over 6 mins off my 10K time. My 5K time is between 27 and 28 min on average now too. I am not built like a 10K runner - not even after losing 14 kilos during this last year.

    Good luck and its a fantastic feeling to beat your PB even if it is only be a few seconds.

  • Thanks for the replies! Stevie probably only just under 10miles a week at the moment.

    Ok so how about this plan;

    Tuesday - 10k

    Thursday - 10k

    Saturday - 5k (try and pick up the pace)

    Is this enough do you think?
  • How about gradually working up to making that Tuesday a fartlek/interval session, e.g. 10km incorporating 3-4x1 mile at 5k pace with easy running in between the efforts. This will help you to improve your speed.

    Then 10k gently on Thursday, and your 5km Parkrun on Saturday.

  • Stevie  GStevie G ✭✭✭

    Dancing, that would be the equivalent of 2 quality sessions from 3 runs a week...bit overblown i think.

    Grace, at your stage, the answer is simply getting the mileage up. What you suggest is a good step, and will I'm sure bring that pb down.

    I wouldn't put in any designated speedwork until you're comfortable on a good 20+miles a week. Think of speedwork as laying the roof on a house. At the moment, you've barely laid any foundations.

  • adding a sprint session here and there may help or alternativley abit of fartlek image

  • Stevie, I would disagree - if want speed, for 5k is quality over quantity. When I first broke 19 minutes for 5k I was running about 10 miles per week, but doing 2-4 quality sessions.

  • Stevie  GStevie G ✭✭✭

    Dancing, that's either a very unique approach indeed, or you're leaving out the warm up and cool down. Those could total 3-4miles per session on their own. You also don't mention whether you were cross training or supplementing the running in any way.

    My early 5ks for instance were done with perhaps 1 or 2 short runs a week, but I was also playing football on top.

    The OP is new into running, and has a low base fitness. Suggesting speed work at this stage I think would risk injury, when an extra 5-10miles a week at easy pace would safely and easily bring the times down.

    After that down the line a proper speedwork session could be added.

  • No I don't include warm up and cool down in my weekly mileage. They are not training, they are preparation for training.

  • Stevie  GStevie G ✭✭✭

    well a cool down isn't preparation is it ....image

  • It is preparation for the next day's training. image



  • Stevie  GStevie G ✭✭✭

    you sound a bit serious...and a bit too conditioned image

  • thanks everyone! image 

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