The 10k race is a great distance. It’s not as frightening as a half or full marathon. But it represents a step up from the 5k. In short, get started on the 10k run and you’re on your way to becoming a real runner!:-)

There’s no reason your first 10k race shouldn’t be an enjoyable experience. This article will show you how.

Are you ready for your first 10k race?

Balance is key here. The truth is that for your first of anything, you never feel 100% ready. So for your first 10k race you should just go for it.

Of course, if you run a 10k tomorrow with no training you’ll probably end up walking it. Or worst still, injuring yourself. For proper preparation for a 10k run, you need to have at least 10 weeks training. This is more than enough time but allows time for illness, or anything else that life throws at you unexpectedly.

Be prepared for the good, the bad and the ugly

Full preparation for any race need consistent training over those 10 or so weeks. This means even if you don’t feel like running, or the weather is a bit cold, you should still push yourself to get out there 3 times a week.

Somedays it’s going to feel like you’re running with legs made of lead in thick sticky treacle. That’s just the way it is- these are the ‘ugly’ runs.

When you’re struggling around your neighbourhood on a Tuesday morning or Thursday evening you’ll no doubt be thinking “is this worth it? I’ll never be a good runner!”

However, it’s absolutely guaranteed that for every bad and ugly run you battle through, those good days will feel even better. And almost ‘by magic’ you’ll find your time (and general enjoyment) will improve massively come race day.

Take it easy

The secret to running longer (increasing to 10k in this case) is to run at an easy pace. You need to avoid burning out so run within yourself for most of your training runs.

Concentrate on running for time- during the week two 30 minute runs and a longer one at the weekend is a great training routine to adopt.

Also, you don’t have to exercise on your rest days. If you don’t like sitting around, go for a walk or a swim.

Running Longer

Over the course of your 10 week training you should look to gradually increase your running distance. Don’t try to run the 10k in the first week. Start with shorter distances and slowly crank it up.

Keep the increase from week to week to less than 10%. This keeps the strain on your body to a minimum and reduces the likelihood of injury.

Run faster

When you’re running your first 10k you might be thinking only about finishing. That’s fine of course, but there are some additions you can make to your weekly training routine that can really improve your time and strength.

Work out sessions such as this only are done once a week and are particularly good for beginner runners, older runners, or if you are especially injury-prone.

Follow these rules, and stick to a consistent training plan and your first 10k race can be a fulfilling and enjoyable experience.