Speed Endurance for 10k?

I am 23 year old, and been training for 6 weeks now doing roughly 20-25 miles per week with one long run 9-11miles. I did a 5k fast run today in 19:48 but towards the end my legs felt very heavy and i dont think i could go much further at that pace, i have a few weeks before a 10k race and i want to go under 40min 10k, what training should i do so that i can keep the pace going for the whole 10k, got roughly 4 weeks to go.

p.s I managed to do the 10k 3 years ago in 40:05 with around 3 months training but cant remember what i did.



  • Right, 4 weeks to go.......

    I'd do mile reps at race pace (6:24 per mile ish) once a week, with maybe 1:30 recovery. I'd start with 4 reps and increase by one rep each week.

    Your long run sounds long enough. But keep it at easy pace (7:30-8:00 per mile pace).

    I'd also recommend a weekly tempo run....perhaps 5 miles continuous at 15 secs per mile slower than race pace (sub 6:40 per mile pace). But wait at least 2 days to recover from your mile reps before doing this.

    Also try to up your weekly mileage by maybe 3 miles each week. Just easy miles to keep up improvement with your aerobic training.

    Lastly, have a go at a 4 mile race pace time trial one week before the race. Keep your pacing even and monitor it. If you can keep the pace up in training for 4 miles......you'll probably manage the full race distance on race day.

    Best of luck...

  • cliff781cliff781 ✭✭✭

    Thanks for your response.

    Some brilliant ideas here i will defanite give them a go. With the 1 mile reps with 1:30 recovery, would i walk the recovery or keep jogging at a slow pace?

    Also the last week before the race, what sort of training should i do? slow paced runs?

    thanks, much appriciated image

  • Hi Cliff,

    Its what I did in training before getting inside 40 mins for my first 10K. I got 39:38 at the time.

    With the mile reps, I must admit I walked a few paces after finishing each rep and just generally kept loose. At the point of finishing each rep I'd check where the analogue hand was on my watch and just catch my breath whilst moving. Some swear by jogging recoveries, its just not what I do.....

    Ah, last week before the race. Do the 4 mile time trial seven days before the race, I personally wouldn't do anything the day after. 4 miles at race pace is a tough session.

    But in the final 5 days I'd keep most running at around two thirds of what you'd been doing in previous weeks, no hard sessions, speed sessions or tempo runs. I might do a few race pace half mile reps a few days before the race (maybe six, with 1:30 recoveries). This just as pace practicing, so that you are familiar with your chosen pace and don't go off too quick or slow on the day.

    I almost always take the day before a race off. I have been known to do a few miles of slow running, but nothing much. Others swear by a session of strides the day before.....but I don't.

    Let us know how you get on, I'd be delighted for you to get inside 40.

  • cliff781cliff781 ✭✭✭

    Thanks again for the response Jamie.

    I will give all these sessions a go and hopefully it will be enough for me to get under  40min. The race is on the 23rd of September so will let you know on here how I got on.

    Thanks image

  • cliff781cliff781 ✭✭✭

    Did one of your suggested sessions today, the one mile reps with 1:30 recovery in between, did the reps in 6:23per mile pace, was tough but good session. 4 reps today might give 5 a go next week now.

  • Brilliant! You're clearly closer than you think.

    I'd avoid anything heavy for the next two days. Maybe a nice recovery run around the 8:00-8:20 pace tomorrow perhaps 6-8 miles. Perhaps a slightly quicker easy run the day after that around 7:40 pace.

    Then perhaps a tempo run at 6:40 pace or your weekly long run three days after?

    Then a rest day should be on the cards......Sunday.

  • cliff781cliff781 ✭✭✭

    Now that sounds like a good plan to me.

    Yea think will do the weekly long run three days after and will get the tempo run done on Monday.

    Got to admit big confidence booster today.

  • Superb news, keep us posted.

  • Got a bit exited today for my tempo run, ended up doing the first half a mile at 5:15per mile pace, then i started to slow and get tired managed 5k at just under the 20min.

    Do you think that the fast pace at the start affected the rest of my run, if i would have gone at 6:26 from the start would i be able to keep that pace for longer?

    I need to remember to get the little man on my garmin on the race pace and keep with him, keep forgetting, and i find it so hard to judge the 6:26 pace. only 2 weeks to go.

  • Yep, so you did the first 1/2 mile in 2:37 ish!? That will have crippled the rest of your run. I'd imagine that 5:15 would probably be faster than your 1 mile pace at the moment. That will have bashed you straight into oxygen debt.....

    I track every 1/4 mile to make sure I'm on pace.

  • ok thats a good idea, need to try getting this pacing better, will do the test run this weekend and will constantly keep an eye on my watch at the start, as soon as i get itno the pace and rythym im fine after that then its just always at the start.

  • I've annihilated quite a few races by starting out too fast. With the adrenaline, you don't feel the faster pace for half a mile or so (and other fast starters don't help either)......but you always pay for it later on. My only cure has been to track every quarter mile and even then it can be tricky.

  • Do you track the quarter miles on a Garmin?



  • My advice is based only on my own experience. I expect to get a bashing for it... but whatevs... it works for me.

    3 quality runs (sprint/threshold/endurance) and a couple of strength sessions sort me out these days.

    My running has come on massively using this routine:


    • M: sprints of 400m or 800m with recovery to 140HR. Tack on 2 miles either side of the inetrvals for a warm up and cool down.
    • T: squat and deadlift, heavy. 3x3 + a couple of heavy singles is my fav. None of this 10 reps or more crap. HEAVY. Like, upwards of 100kg for squats.
    • W: hill or threshold run. Big hills are great. 6-8 miles. Occasionally a bit more.
    • T: squat, light. A few sets of 6-8. Focus on volume but keep the load high enough.
    • F: swim. 500m as fast as possibe.
    • S: long fell run. Can be anything from 8-15 miles depending upon terrain.
    • S: off.


    I absolutely do not buy into the 'junk miles' philosophy of going for a plodding along run or filling up empty days with no effort runs. It's just a waste of recovery that could be used to recover you from more effective and arduous training. As you can see from above, I rarely go above 25 miles per week anymore. I'm no Mo Farah, but I can squeeze out a 40min 10km in an urban environment -- i.e. with prams and dogs and traffic lights and junctions -- and half marathon in

  • I absolutely do not buy into the 'junk miles' philosophy of going for a plodding along run or filling up empty days with no effort runs. It's just a waste of recovery that could be used to recover you from more effective and arduous training. As you can see from above, I rarely go above 25 miles per week anymore. I'm no Mo Farah, but I can squeeze out a 40min 10km in an urban environment -- i.e. with prams and dogs and traffic lights and junctions -- and half marathon in

  • For some reason the web site is cutting bits out of my messages and chopping them off... sorry to anyone who is trying to read this coherently!!

  • Hi Propaganda,

    Yes, I track my quarter miles on a Garmin. I usually find the Garmin pretty accurate.

  • And Hi SomeOldDog,

    Your routine looks like mine from a year and a half ago.......and yes it will give you some damn good improvements for a while. But you will eventually stagnate and your times will stop improving. Its because everything you do barring the long fell run is pretty high intensity anaerobic work......and the fell run might (if your effort level is high....which it probably is!) fall into this category too.

    Watch out for injury too, Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday are three heavy days in quick succession. I'd split them up with a rest day or your swimming day.

    I never bought the junk miles thing either till I tried it. I thought it was a load of lazy assed bollox from plodders who should have been doing more quality work to really improve their times. WRONG! It is amazing what a diet of easy paced running can do for your aerobic fitness and your race times. Developing anaerobic fitness and aerobic fitness seems to be the key to improvement.

    My easy paced runs vary between 135-150 BPM (8:00 pace - 7:20 pace). You never feel anything like out of breath but these miles are doing more for your fitness than you can possibly think.

  • Race day this Sunday, Has come quickly now, not sure if i am ready for the sub 40min to be honest, when i ran the 40:05 back in 2008 I felt a lot fitter then, but I will go off at 4min per KM pace from the start and try and keep it going to the end, if not there is another 10k in december I am aiming to do will have to smash the barrier then lol

    but fingers crossed it will go this weekend then I can start trainning for the sub 35 image

  • Best of luck, your mentality is perfect. My best results have come when I've doubted that I'm ready for a target.

    Watch that first 1/2 Km or so, you don't want to be much under 2:00 however easy it feels under the adrenaline of race day.

    Whatever the result please let us know. Don't do anything remotely difficult on Friday or Saturday.

  • Done the race today, the weather was really bad raining very hard and extremely windy, it was a difficult race for me due to this and really struggled with the wind especially the last 5km.

    Got the pacing off the start perfect was at the 1km mark at 4:02 and was at 5km at 20:10 but the wind on the way back really killed my race, finished with a time of 43:57. I'm happy with that considering the weather just hope it will be better conditions for the next one.

    Thanks for all your help really has made a massive difference to my fitness.

    Thanks Jamie image

  • Top effort mate! You're right, the rain and wind were savage yesterday. Weather has ruined several of my PB attempts too. Those last two or three miles must have been absolute murder for you judging by the difference in 5k splits. Ouch!! 

    Wind is probably the biggest problem, but rain soaks into footwear and increases their weight as the race goes on.

    The good news is that there are quite alot of 10Ks, something tells me you'll enter another very soon. Fingers crossed for better weather next time......

  • I've got a 10K on the flat that I'm preparing for. The race is on 18th October and I'm hoping for a PB. My current 10K PB is 37:10 as of last March and I'm hoping that all the hard training this summer will pay off and I'll get somewhere sub 37 (anything that starts with a 36 would be very nice).

    I did a nice quality session on Friday:

    4 x mile reps with 1 min recovery. This is the best I've performed over this workout. Average heart rates were early to mid 170s, with a peak of 178.

    1) 5:50

    2) 5:48

    3) 5:45

    4) 5:49

    I also did a nice 13.1 mile easy run on Saturday at 7:28 pace. Average heart rate was 152BPM.

  • Nice one, Good luck in that 10k hope you get under that 37min.

    That session sounds very good fair play, very consistant on the reps.

    Which 10k you doing on the 18th?


  • Cheers fella....it pays to track those quarter milesimage

    I'm based on the Isle of Man and the 10k is a 12.5 lap road run around our national sports centre on the flat. Not a 10k for views/scenery etc. But a good PB opportunity.


  • Nice one that sounds good.

    Im going to start doing a few track speed sessions into my training to see if it will help get my 10k pb down, going to set a big target for the 10k in december say sub 38min, got two months so should be ok lol

    any tips for doing speed sessions? or any advice what sessions to do?

  • Hi Cliff,

    The bread and butter of my training is two quality sessions a week and one longer run at the weekend. My quality days are usually Monday and Thursday and the longer run is on Saturday (12-14 miles at easy pace 7:20-7:30). The rest of the week is filled up with easy running (7-8min/mile pace) plus a gym workout (full body weights workout with fairly high reps & abdominal work, plus 20-30 mins boxing training, either jump rope/bag work/speedball or sometimes exercise bike). I aim for 50 miles a week plus the gym work/cross training.

    As for quality workouts, I tend to rotate them over the weeks as follows:

    1) Track session to include 7 x 200 metres, 7 x 400 metres, 7 x 300 metres slow with fast final 100 metres. All with 1 min rest.

    2) Hill session: A 5-6 mile easy run separated by two blocks of 13 mins of running up and down two of the steepest hills I know of locally.

    3) Session of 8 x 1/2 miles on a measured flat road circuit. Again 1 min rest.

    4) Tempo run, 5-6 miles at 15 seconds per mile slower than 10K race pace.

    5) Session of 4 x 1 mile again on the measured flat road circuit. 1 min rest

    6) Lactate session: Easy running for 3 mins then sprint as fast as possible for 1 min. Repeat for 7 reps, no stopping. Nasty session!!

    7) 5k - 4 mile time trial at predicted 10K pace. 

    All these require a good warmup!!

    What I do really depends on my mood and whether there is a race looming, but I don't like to go three quality days without a track session or a hill session as a general rule.

    Many folks are very secretive about their training, I'll tell anyone exactly what I do.....I like to see people smash their PBs and this lot have served me well!

  • That all sounds very good, thanks for sharing your info.

    I did my first track session since around 4 years today, was nice to go running on a track again for a change. I did 5 x 200m with 1 min jog recovery (1 mile warm up and 1 mile cool down) I ran them just outside my comfort zone and did not push too hard used it as an introduction to get back into track sessions.


    1) 34sec

    2) 38sec

    3) 37sec

    4) 36sec

    5) 39sec

  • Those 200s aren't much fun are they!? Try mixing them up with quarter mile reps, nasty!

    I've been concentrating on this 10K I have on the 18th.

    On Friday I did this session with 1 min recoveries:

    1.5 mile) 8:42  average 166BPM

    1 mile) 5:47 average 173BPM

    1 mile) 5:48 average 172BPM

    1 mile) 5:49 average 173BPM

    And yesterday:

    2mile) 11:37 average 170BPM

    0.5mile) 2:55 average 167BPM

    0.5mile) 2:51 average 168BPM

    0.5mile) 2:52 average 167BPM

    0.5mile) 2:54 average 165BPM

    My hope is to run the 10K with a 5:50/mile average. But judging by the 2 miles yesterday, it might be a touch ambitious. My follow up race pace half mile reps proved that I still had zip left in my legs, but the 2 miles did seem to take me a bit into oxygen debt. I was grateful for the minute rests.

    My goal is to get up to a 4 mile race pace time trial a week before the race. If I can do that, I've got a feeling I might crack 37 min for the first time......though it'll hurt!!!

  • Yea totally agree, the first 200m is always ok but the rest of them are not fun at all, but worth doing i suppose. yea next time will try ading a few quarter miles to change it around a bit.

    Those sessions sound like murder, fair play to you they are very good. Keep up the hard work and im sure you will smash that 37min barrier.

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