First10k ever in October and I am slow help!

Hi Istarted running in March and can run up to five and a half miles. I have setmyself a target and entered a 10k runon October. I ran today at the max heart rate 149 for the five and half miles - I am following a training schedule but to be honest if I had ran any slower I would have stopped -   13 min miles. I am 54. 

Also I appear to be putting weight on rather than loosing it

Can anyone advice at all


Thanks in anticipation


  • tricialitttricialitt ✭✭✭

    So you can run for about an hour- that's good, bet you couldn't do  that when you first started!

    Did you base your training HR zones on a meaured max HR, or are you going with 220-your age to estimte max HR- ? this estimate is very innacurate, so make sure you are using a properly measured max HR.

    Assuming that you have the numbers correct, and are training in the "base training" zone, don't worry, you will naturally become more efficient, and your pace will improve for the same HR zone- you still have time to improve. Does you programme thrown in any faster HR work at a later stage? might be useful to add a few 20 minute sesions at a higher rate.

    Re: your weight- remember that it is about 100 cals per mile run, so your 5 miles is 500 cals, make sure you aren't rewarding yourself with more calories than you have burned off!

    Good luck, keep going!

  • XX1XX1 ✭✭✭

    I wouldn't stress over your speed too much, it'll improve over time with an increase in fitness.  As tricialitt says, don't over reward yourself food-wise and your weight should also decrease over time, although it may well fluctuate along the way.  It's hard when starting out but just stick with it...  Have you looked at any Beginnger 10K Training Plans?

  • For those distances I wouldn't eat anything (or drink any sugary/energy drinks) different from your normal diet - you certainly don't need any extra calories.  The best way to keep your weight under control in my experience is to log everything (I used myplate on the livestrong website) and eat a calorie deficit.  Exercise (especially such low mileage running) make so little difference compared to diet.  If you can time one of your normal meals to occur in the 30 minutes or so after running you'll make best use of the food.

    I wouldn't worry about your time - you're a cert to finish if you can run 90% of the distance 8 weeks out, and finishing is the importnant thing.

  • Thanks everyone - I should have said I am a woman, if that makes a difference. The heart rate is based on a formula that taknotion into  account my resting heart rate, which is about 55 to 60.  The 149 is about 80%.

    Ialso should say I m small and not overweight but would prefer to be alittle lighter

    Clearly. Will carry on and lets hope I can manage to finish the run!

  • Hey Fat runner, as said above, you shouldn't worry about 13mm's right now as you get fitter (and lose weight) your pace will improve. I'm a 54yr old guy, now down from 13 to 12mm's and not worried at all about my slow pace (though it took a while to learn that slow is good) oh, and I'm also ok taking walk breaks when my HR gets too high, in fact if I hit 80% of MAX I give myself a walk penalty and walk until it goes down to 70% again (it makes me slow right down as I approach 80%). 

    Run for (and against) yourself, just by going out and running means your doing more than most of the population and whilst running alone won't help you lose weight it can help. The average Joe (or Joanne) will burn 100cals/mile so don't treat yourself with extra calories after a 5k runimage

    edited to say I should have read the replies properly, tricialitt had it in a nutshellimage

  • Interesting about the weight - I am only 5 foot 2 and weigh just under 9 stone I would like to be half stone  lighter but seem, since running to weigh  more, which seems unfair that's all. Ran 22 miles over 7 days, some speed work included

  • Hi FR:

    At just under 9 stone you don't really need to worry about weight much image I'm high 9s and only 1" taller i'm jeajous image

    With regards to the speed if you are running around 20 miles a week just keep going you have another 2 months at least, at some point it will just click and the times will start to come down.

    Personally I really found the distance runs make the difference the further you go the more confidence you have to push yourself in your shorter runs, which mean they speed up, and then that gradually filters through to speeding up in your longer runs as the confidence that you can do it develops.

    Weight. just keep an eye on it.  Remember not to over-eat to compensate for running. It's so easy to think i've ran 20 plus miles this week so i can eat what i want. Unfortunatly it doesn't work like that for most of us, it means you've burn around 2,000 calories if that maybe 1,800 so you need to ensure that if you take any extra food or sports drinks, they only come to around the same.  image A lot of it can just be put down to natural fluctuations. 

    I find that if I run in the evenings i'm a lot better of running before tea.  This way i don't eat anything more, as I come in from the run shower then have tea. But, if I have tea wait around then run, I keep wanting a little nibble after a run, as well as tea.

  • My advice? Just relax, and enjoy the fact that you can run, regardless of speed. I'm ten years younger than you, have shed a lot of weight, am still very overweight, but love running. I entered my club's 10k back in May and came last, but got probably the biggest cheer of all (possibly because it was p-ing down and they all wanted to go home!). If you do want to lose weight, try tracking what you eat as Daeve recommended (I use My Fitness Pal). 

    If you can run 5 1/2 miles now, you will definitely finish; enjoy your race!

  • Thanks everyone - I will record what I eat. Someone suggested it was muscle I just laughed. Actually not running today, should be but feeling ratherpoorly, sore throat, tempreture and slightly fed up. Thanks


  • At 5'1" under 9st, you aren't fat!- change your name! I'm an inch-and a half taller, and weigh a half a stone more than you. I think it is very difficult for those of us who just have half - 1 stone we'd like to shift, whereas those who are serioulsy overweight often lose dramatic amounts.

    I would love to get back down to my pre- university "fighting weight" but, more than 20 years down the line, I think that extra stone is here to stay! I thought that marathon trainig would help, but not a single kg have I lost, 7 or 8 marathons later! You are just a few years older than me- late 40's/ early 50's is a dificult time not to gain weight, so you shouldn't be surprised that it isn't dropping off you.

    You might be better to not worry too much about the scales, and look at watching waist/ hip circumference- it is a better indictor of body fat %, and also affects how you look/ your health much more than a number on the scales.

    Good luck! keep at it slowly, and you will get there.


  • Thank you so much, the main thing is I am running and feeling good for it. I have never entered a race before so it feels quite exciting. My maingoal is to be fit and enjoy life, clearly my preoccupation about my weight is something else!

  • (not so) Fat Runner, do you use a tape measure as well as the scales? am sure if you keep running your body shape will change (for the better). Am sure you'll do just fine in your first race and of course will get a PBimage

  • Yehave am measuring myself and I will be keeping an eye on that. Just curious Iknow someone when he runs looses lots but I don't just depressing. However, as I say my main motivation is to remain fit and enjoy

  • XX1XX1 ✭✭✭

    FR -- By running you'll hopefully be burning some fat but you'll also be increasing muscle mass...  As muscle is heavier than fat that could partly explain why it's hard to shift the weight.

  • Just realised if I run on the pavemenus I seemgot run much faster. I usually run in fields and on  tracks with my dog, and I am much slower. On the pavements much faster, which is rather curious and it's made me  feel happier  -as anyone elseexperienced this

  • Yes - I always run slower off road, partly to make sure I don't trip and also the ground gives a little more and absorbs some energy I think.  Still, I think it good to train off tarmac - easier on the knees and the footfall angle variation seems to be easier on the joints as well.

    Losing weight is really hard - I lost none in marathon training last year, and none up until 4 weeks ago, this year.  I thought I should as I was burning a good 1000 cal a day on average some weeks.... but no - exercise is a poor substitute for diet.  4 weeks ago I decided to cut down a lot on what I ate (keeping careful track), and only ate large calorie meals straight after running (not as well as a normal meal but instead of) - lost almost 4 Kg so far and dropping every day (hard though, constantly hungry).

    Personally I think cycling is better for fat burning than running, most people will have a tendancy to run too fast and shift the proportion of energy used to glycogen stores.

  • I rather like the typos in my last comment box, clearly should have prove read!

     I think you are correct I need  to keep a food diary. I am enjoying the running though, felt very good when I realised I was perhaps running faster than I had thought.Thanks for your support and I will cut down the food in take 


  • Did the race today. Ran 65 mins - dreadful weather - wet, windy, cold and very muddy. Still came 42 out of 108 veteran woman runners so very pleased? Onwards and upwards for another race

  • Well done - but I'm a bit confused as to why you call yourself "Fat runner" and think you need to lose half a stone.

    You aren't and you don't.

  • Did you do the sheffield 101010 fat runner? Crazy weather wasn't it!

  • No harpenden and yep weather really horrid


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