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Discussion Starter #1
Hello all!

I'm really getting into running and I'd love to be able to get better! In January I decided I wanted to do a race - the only one available was the 10K on May 21st and so I signed up for it. I'd really wanted to try a 5K first but I ended up doing the 10K. I did some training. I wasn't very scientific about it. I started off running for 5-10 mins until I felt comfortable doing that, then I went up to 20 mins. Then I got a pedometer and did a 3K run, a 4K run, a 5K run and a 6K run. Finally, on Sunday just past, I did the 10K. I LOVED it! It's an amazing buzz and it was so much fun! Back when I'd decided to do it, the only condition I set myself was that I would run ALL the way with NO walking at any stage. I achieved this and finished in 1 hour 10 minutes. 14000 women ran and I was the 7600 person to come in so I feel pleased I came in the middle of the field! My legs were only sore for 1 day afterwards as well! Two days later I was ready to hit the tarmac again!

So, I've signed up to do another 10K in September and I can't wait! This time I've put myself in the time bracket to finish in 1HR or less. I was wondering if any of you out there might be able to advise me on a proper training programme and how I go about achieving the new time. Is it realistic? Could I shave more off it? Physically - I'm 5ft tall, 7st 7lbs with an athletic build. I've got very solid legs from years of figure skating.

Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

Cheers! :d
 

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Hi

Well done on running your first race. I hope you've got a good shrink 'cos this stuff is addictive!
There are lots of 10k schedules here : http://www.runnersworld.co.uk/news/article.asp?UAN=84
It is difficult to say what time you should aim for, but sub-60 mins is definitely possible. Do a 5k race half-way through your schedule to gauge how you're doing, and use that to set your 10k target.
Enjoy.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Hi Greg

Thanks - I had a ball and I can't wait for September! I've also treated myself to a Base Layer t-shirt - on Sunday I ran in the race t-shirt and I don't think I could have found thicker cotton if I'd tried!

I'll have a look at the website and try something from there. I want to increase my stride length (though I've only got wee legs!) so that I can go further quicker! I've also taken your advice and have found a small local 5K that I can do in July which should suit me perfectly.

Thanks
 

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Re. stride length - don't! There is now ample evidence that increasing stride length beyond its natural reach vastly increases chances of injury. What increasing your stride length does is force you to strike the ground with the heel taking the full impact for longer. This places an huge amount of stress on the bones, joints and ligaments all the way up to your hip. I know sprinters do it, but their feet hit the ground what? 100 times in a race? In a 10k, your feet will be taking the impact 10,000 times... The way to run faster is to increase the cadence (number of strides per second).
In fact, a lot of running "methods" like POSE and Chi running advocate the foot hitting the ground below the body (with the body leaning forward slightly from the ankles).

All this being said, I think while it is good practice to also try to focus on form, when you first start running, the overwhelming majority (99%+?) of your improvement will come from getting fitter, and only 1%, if that, from better form or technique.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Okay - thanks. It didn't occur to me but you're absolutely right. And I'm already heavy on my heels anyway, whether walking or running. I will keep focusing on getting fitter and running better, more comfortably, instead. I went out for the first time after the 10K the other day and did a wee 3K run. I realised when I started off that I train quite a bit faster than I actually ran on the day....guess that's why I lasted okay on the 10K day!

Cheers
 
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