10k training.

Hi Guys,

I completed the Faversham 10k at the weekend with no specific training and relied solely on my rugby fitness. my time was 46.55 but I really enjoyed the competition and am keen to go for a sub 40 min time in the future. my question is about training. I play competitive rugby which involves training for 4 hours a week and then a match of 80 mins on a saturday afternoon. In a runners opinion what would be the best training runs to add to this, taking into account that i will only have 2-3 sessions a week available.



  • I'd guess that the two essential sessions are a long run of around 90 mins, then for the 10k specific training you want to do a long tempo run, at least 30 mins tempo (at your current fitness that should be around 7:30 mile pace) with 2 miles warm up / cool down.

    Your final session (if you can do 3) will depend upon what you're getting from your rugby training, if you do plenty of Fartlek / sprints then you'd be better getting another steady distance run in, otherwise you may want to mix in some speedwork.

    I will say that getting down to sub 40 with only 2/3 sessions is quite unusual and will depend on you having lots of natural talent, nothing wrong with having a target though.

  • Thanks mate, will try that and see how i get on. definitely don't class myself as a naturally tallented runner as I play in the second row and am 6ft 7!

  • running..man, how did the 10k feel to you?  Did you start fast and tire?  Did you pace it fairly well and cope with the distance?  Did you feel you'd given it all at the end?  Were there hills and how did they feel?  Did you overtake more, or get overtaken more?  Any points you found particularly difficult, or that you particularly enjoyed?

    What does your rugby training involve for those 4 hours?

    Finally, do you want to run for rugby, or is running something that you want to do in it's own right, regardless of the impact on your rugby?

  • Hi Ratzer,

    I went off like a train and was really struggling by 3k getting overtaken a bit. it was quite hilly and I did suffer with that. interestingly, the last 3-4k were easier and I was not getting overtaken and by the end i felt like i could go round again.

    The rugby training is a mixed bag really. Rugby provides a unique type of fitness because there is alot of jogging with sprints thrown in but also alot of wrestling, pushing and falling over which really saps the energy and gets the body in a position where you are functioning at the wrong end of your comfort zone alot of the time. The saving grace is that there are alot of breaks to recover etc..

    I would like to enjoy running as a separate hobby because I've got into running the hastings half marathon and a few other bits each year but i don't train at all for them. Being a competitive type I'm obsessed by the time of a run and beating my PB so would like to improve my running for that really. best i've managed so far for the hastings half marathon is 1hr 48m but almost all of the runs i've taken part in have been the day after a rugby match where i'm not feeling my freshest.

  • 1h 48 for Hastings is pretty good especially with no specific training, it's a hilly course.

    Sub 40 is a very hard time to go for with another sport to think about IMO.

    I agree with Ross Rilley above, the long run of 90 mins or so will be most important and a solid tempo run as these are the two things Iexpect you won't get in rugby training.

    It's a hard target but based on the info you give above might be possible. Good luck.
  • Hi, running..man.  Your mini race report suggests you're aerobically fit, but obviously unused to pacing yourself.  The rugby training sounds like a good quality session, one based more on strength and speed than endurance, but you do have to last 80 minutes aswell, so that's there too.  If you do take on the running, then you'll aid your endurance on the pitch by taking on long runs, but you don't want to add too much more quality or your training overall (and playing and running) will suffer as you fatigue.

    I would do as suggested above and look at getting in a 90 minute and a 60 minute easy run, each once a week and well spread, not together, like Weds and Sun for example.  I would also take on a race-pace session to get you to understand it, but I would make this short compared to what full-time runners might do, as you don't want to exhaust yourself.  For example, two miles at your average 10k pace, separated by an easy (jogged) mile, and with warmup and cooldown.  That might be a forty minute session in total.

    The other thing to be aware of is the impact you put on your legs.  The majority of rugby training is on grass when outside.  Rugby players also tend to be heavier than average with some good muscle bulk.  If you do your runs on roads you will be putting a lot of stress on your lower legs.  This is another reason why I would keep your running easy - don't push it.  You'll get a lot of improvement, including in race pace, out of slow miles.  Try to remember to run like a winger not like a prop, even when you're running slowly! image

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