How much could I expect to improve by upping my training?

Hi everyone and a merry xmas. I am new to the forum as a member but have been reading threads with interest for the past 6 months. I would like some advice on how much you feel that I could improve if I became more dedicated to running. I have been running 'on and off' for the past 5 years but have never really improved due to somewhat eratic mileage I guess. The main reason for my running has been to try and improve my Karate which I do twice a week. Over the past 12 months I have logged my mileage and am averaging about 7 miles a week (I know, not much!) which consists of anything from 1-4 runs per week depending on work etc etc. I guess you could say that I am roughly doing 2 tempo type runs of 3.3 miles a week on average and occasionally do some speedwork on the treadmill (every 2 weeks or so). I can comfortably run 10 minute miles, my 'tempo' 10k pace is about 9 min miles and if I go flat out and kill myself I can run 8:15 for 2-3 miles. So my question is: If I did change my training, become more dedicated, up my mileage to 20,30 miles a week what degree of improvement would be possible? I have run one 10k in March last year (53:59) and feel that If I did one now the time would be the same - I am not improving but not getting any worse. Thanks for reading this and any comments much appreciated. BTW I am a 36 year old male (ex smoker who quit 10 years ago) with max HR of 175 and resting pulse of 48.


  • I think it is difficult to generalise, but on the basis of my wife's experience believe you could knock perhaps at least 5 minutes off your 10k time with extra training? She is a very keen gym-goer(4-5 times per week, mostly aerobics, spinning, but very little running). She did our local 10k in 2001 in about 58 mins, having put in a few runs of about 4 miles in training once a week for about a month. In 2002 she started training about 3 months before, and would run 4 miles at least three times a week. The result - 53 minutes!

    It also sounds to me (mere mortal that I am) that you are not doing enough long runs. I would have thought a few 6+ milers once a week would do wonders for your endurance. Why not try 3 runs a week (one speedwork, one long, one recovery/easy)for say six weeks and follow it with a race to see if you have improved? I am a year older than you, but find that 3 times a week (running!) is plenty for me if I am not to get injured.

    Go for it!
  • If you are going to do more milage remember to stretch properly as distance runners generally have quite poor flexibility and tight hamstring muscles, which i think would affect your karate.
    Other than that as scrooge says its impossible to give an answer to your question its just a case of go out there, run, and see what happens.
  • None of us really knows what we can achieve until we try
  • Hi Editor
    Agreed, roll on next year
  • there was a good article about the four daya week training scheme in RW a few weeks ago, that looked good. was something similar to what scrooe said, it had one long run, one quick run, one speed session and i can remember the other two, but check it out, after all, youre SUBSCRIBED, there's nothing can stop you! lol
  • Thanks for all the replies guys. I think I will definately try and add a long run in each week. More than anything I must keep motivated and not skip sessions!
Sign In or Register to comment.