10K @ 40

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Aug 2014
3:14pm, 13 Aug 2014
74 posts
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No, not a Jo Pavey thread, I was planning this beforehand, though it has given me more motivation!

I'm 40 next month, and with the birth of my third child, fell running is limited this year, so I'm going to enter a few more road events and try and place well in age categories. I've got a 10K lined up for November, and I'd like to do well at it -definitely sub-39, sub-38 would be fantastic. The race is 11.5 weeks away, and there is a 10K four weeks before it that I can use a potential sharpener.

My starting point is that I'm a little slower than normal as I've just got back from the Lakes but will be back to normal in ten days time. That means 19minutes for 5K. Clearly I need to be doing more like 18m30 to be targeting sub-38 - which seems perfectly realistic and would be a non-track pb to boot.

I've never actually trained properly for anything below a half marathon - so what would you say are the key sessions for 10K training? The likely difficulty for me in a 10K is going to be the endurance - I have run 10K exactly once in the past year, and that was in a race pushing a buggy! I don't expect to get more than 3-4 session in a week, partly limited by time, and partly by avoiding injury. If I look for a sub-38 schedule on the web, some of them have 8 sessions in a week! I only did 4 for a sub-3 marathon, so I am confident I can get results with consistent training - and equally confident I'll be injured if I try to follow any of these schedules.

I'm thinking something like:

build up to a 15K easy run, (some weeks finishing fast)
Interval session, rotating between 400s (flat), 1K (flat), long reps (slightly undulating)
Steady run of 8-10K.

The race is flat - I'm in Cambridge.
Aug 2014
3:30pm, 13 Aug 2014
218 posts
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I'm in Cambridge too so understand the flatness, which one are you looking at?

I'm sure some good advice will come along. I don't know what I'm doing myself, let alone guide someone else, so I'm keeping an eye out for some pointers.
Aug 2014
3:34pm, 13 Aug 2014
76 posts
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Bonfire Burn 10K in Impington - did it couple of years ago, and it was windy and wet, plus they pushed the start back twenty minutes, so I hope it's better organised this time. By the time I got my bag back and under cover, I was hypothermic. The guy next to me at the start was wearing a bin liner - and he was still wearing it 5K later.

Might well do Granchester on 5th October.
Oct 2014
9:22pm, 2 Oct 2014
80 posts
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Training so far - long runs have been a bit short, speedwork has been consistent, steady runs are getting faster, and no injuries.

Week 10: 29K. 4min reps off 2min. 13K easy. 8K steady (35m25). Was supposed to be a tempo, but too easy.

Week 9: 24K. 4min reps off 2min, 12k run, and 30 minutes of hard running on steep hills (camping down in Dorset)

Week 8: 28K. 10x400 (in about 90) off 1 min, 14K run finish fast, a terrible 5K parkrun (20m13). That's not where I was hoping to be, though I did do the long run the day before, get up too late for a decent breakfast, and slept badly!

Week 7: 29K. Easy week. no reps., no long runs. 8K fast in 33m31. Felt like I was missing a gear.

Week 8: 40K. 4x1mile with 3min jog, avg 6m14. Promising. 10K buggy run.
switched speedwork over to the McMillan workout - mcmillanrunning.com

Week 9: 35K. 2x2mile, 5min jog, 4x1mile. Only managed 2x1mile, thought I was going to pass out. It was a bit warm, but I think I was fighting something off. 6m27 average. Ouch. 12K run.

Week 10: 34K. Easy week, no reps, no long runs. Generally feeling under the weather at start of week. 8K in 33m15, felt good, which is the first time anything has felt good in a while. 40TH BIRTHDAY.

This week (5 weeks to go): Plan is to do 40K (because I'm 40 now).

2mile, 5min jog, 2mile, 3min jog, 1mile, 3min jog, 1mile. With an average of 6m12 - 15 seconds quicker than 2 weeks ago! Finally feeling like it might all be coming together. Sub-38 looks very unlikely, but sub-39 looks on the card, possibly even 38:30. Keen to get a good 5K in at some point too.
Oct 2014
8:30pm, 12 Oct 2014
83 posts
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Now have some concrete results. Slotted in a 10K (Cambridge Town and Gown) this week. 39.08. Ran a good race, very happy with that at this stage, and looking for sub-39 in three weeks time.
Oct 2014
8:22am, 13 Oct 2014
230 posts
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Annoyingly close to sub 39, is it the bonfire burn 10k next then?

I find that some 1k efforts at 5k pace are very helpful as well as 2 mile reps at, or near, 10k pace.
Nov 2014
8:41pm, 2 Nov 2014
91 posts
  • 0
Week 11: 29K inc the interval session I mentioned at the end of my last post, plus a 13K run longer run.
Week 12: 36K inc the 10K race (Town and Gown) in 39.08
Week 13 34K with no speedwork to recover from the 10K
Week 14: 20K. 3x 2m w 5min jog recovery, which went badly - 6m22/mile, followed by somewhat under the weather for the next 2 days (explains the bad session).
Week 15: 28K. In excellent shape early in the week, then got ill again on Fri, Sat, followed by racing (somewhat inadvisedly) on Sunday in 39.38 (so 30s slower than 3 weeks earlier). Happy with the effort, not the result. But did get 3rd place V40.

Conclusion: while I didn't quite manage the sub-39 I was targetting, I am confident that I would have on the right day - and quite possibly close to 38.30. BUT I haven't actually done it, so I'll have to make sure I achieve that target before I'm 41. Will have to find another one - but next race is the D&W mini-MM in Edale, so I'll be doing about 50 laps of Castle Hill next.

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No, not a Jo Pavey thread, I was planning this beforehand, though it has given me more motivation!

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