September 6, 2017

Run Your Fastest 10K (Training Plan)

Want to run your fastest 10K? Well, this plan is for you.

I set a goal to run my fastest 10K when I was at a low point... my weight was more than 30 pounds over goal, and my pace was more than 3 minutes (per mile!) slower than I needed it to be to run my personal best.

I wrote this plan based on what I did to run the best 10K of my life. I set a goal, and I actually completed it! (Here is the race report).

This training plan assumes that you:

Have already built a solid aerobic base of easy running;
Can currently run 4-5 times per week, about 60 minutes at a time;
Are uninjured and have your doctor’s clearance to run per the schedule.

My intention with this plan was for a goal of running a 10K under 60 minutes, which is a popular time goal; but I’ve included other goal times and paces as well, because this plan will work for people with just about any goal from 45:00 to 1:30:00.

This plan is designed with an 80/20 ratio of easy running (80% or more of the TIME spent running) to moderate or hard running (20% or less) per WEEK. This is the ideal ratio for reaching your maximum potential as a runner.

I highly recommend the book 80/20 Running, by Matt Fitzgerald to explain why that ratio works. Here on this schedule, I’ve done all the math for you, so if you follow the plan as written, you’ll hit that ideal ratio. (Note: You’ll notice that in week 11, the ratio is 78/22—that is due to a key workout. Since the following week doesn’t have speed work, that extra 2% isn’t a big deal.)

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