10K training tips to get you started!

Runner's Stories, Training Blog Comments Off 545
So you’ve now signed up to your first 10K event having never really run a step and not sure where to start?!  Don’t panic, here are a few tips to get you started!

For a complete beginner, a run/walk technique can be a great way to build on your fitness and endurance to be able to run for an extended period of time.  Some experienced runners may also employ this method as a strategy to increase mileage and reduce injury risk.It’s a simple method (does exactly what it says on the tin!)

1. Warm up with with a 5 min walk, run for a short segment and then take a walk break. Beginners can alternate very short run segments with short walks, e.g. 1 min run, 7 min walk.

2. Repeat run/walk pattern until you have covered your distance or time goal.


3.Start the walk portion before your muscles get too tired as this will allow your muscles to to recover instantly, extending the time and distance you can cover.

4.For the walk sections make sure you’re not walking at a leisurely pace.  Maintain your arm movements which will keep your heart rate elevated, which ensures good cardiovascular workout and makes the transition to running easier.

5.As you progress with the programme start to increase the running time and reduce waking time.


6.Once you can run for long periods, don’t feel like you need to abandon the walk sections altogether, this can still be a useful part of the training session.


Now you can run for a continued period, you may wish to follow the simple 10 week beginner 10K training plan to bring you up to race day.

This only involves running three times a week so there is no reason why it should take over your life.  The other days should include rest and recovery with perhaps some cross training (ideas detailed later).  Be careful not to overdo it and listen to your body; being new to the training load your body has to be given time to adjust and you don’t want to risk injury.

  • +

    Week 1

    Tues: 3-4 mins easy, 1-2 mins recovery x4
    Thurs: 5-7 mins steady, 3 mins recovery x2
    Weekend: long run: 8 mins hard, 3-4 mins recovery x3

  • +

    Week 2

    Tues: 10 mins easy, 5 mins recovery x2
    Thurs: 5 mins warm up (3-4 mins hard, 3-4 mins recovery x2) 5 mins cool down
    Weekend: Long run – 20-40 mins easy

  • +

    Week 3

    Tues: 4 min steady, 2-3 min recovery x4
    Thurs: 5 mins hard, 2-3 min recovery x3
    Weekend: long run – 25 mins easy

  • +

    Week 4

    Tues: 10 mins easy, 5 mins recovery x2
    Thurs: 5 mins warm up (3-4 mins hard, 3-4 mins recovery x2), 5 mins cool down
    Weekend: long run – 20-40 mins easy

  • +

    Week 5

    Tues: 20-25 mins (10-15 mins easy, 10-15 mins hard)
    Thurs: 5 min warm up (10 min hard, 5 min recovery x2) 5 min cool down.Weekend: long run – 30-40 min easy

  • +

    Week 6

    Tues: 10 min easy, 5 min recovery x2
    Thurs: 5 min warm up, 3-4 min hard, 3-4 min recovery x2, 5 min cool down.
    Weekend: long run – 20-40 mins

  • +

    Week 7

    Tues: 30 mins wind up – 10 mins easy, 10 mins steady, 10 mins hard
    Thurs: 6 mins hard, 2-3 mins recovery x4
    Weekend: long run – 50 mins easy

  • +

    Week 8

    Tues: 15 mins wind up (5mins easy, 5 mins steady, 5 min hard) x2
    Thurs: out and back (20 mins easy, 20 mins hard on the way back.  Aim for return to be 2-3 mins faster.
    Weekend: long run – 25-30 mins easy

  • +

    Week 9

    Tues: 30 mins easy
    Thurs: 5 mins hard, 2-3 min recovery x4
    Weekend: long run – 25-30 mins easy

  • +

    Week 10

    Tues: 20 mins easy
    Thurs: 15 mins (10 mins easy, 5 mins hard)
    Weekend: RACE DAY!


Three runs a week, generally one is conversational pace (you should be able to say sentences without gasping for breathe, breathing tips below), one slightly harder session and the third a longer run.

Don’t worry if you can’t stick to those days, you can mix it up and vary your sessions to suit your diary etc.

Happy training and keep checking back for more updates!

Back to Top

DS Media + Events is the brainchild of Steve Cram, who heads a team who have extensive experience in event organisation, delivery and marketing of major sporting events, as well as broadcasting and the media. Steve, former international athlete, World Record holder and Olympic medallist is also director of Extra Mile, which has acted as consultant to numerous major running events such as the Bristol Half Marathon, Jane Tomlinson’s Run For All and has organised the elite road races at the Middlesbrough 10K.