When I see the finishing times of some folk, I'm astonished how people can finish so quickly, so my question is this.... how long has it taken to get to that level like sub-40 10k's etc. I'm interested in how some of the more experienced runners have assessed their progress from being a beginner. I've only been doing races for one year and I've made an overall improvement of about 5% on my finishing times in this period, so I know it's a very gradual thing for me. Were you naturally athletic all your life or is it just all about improving fitness and strength through experience? Were you always fast from the start? I guess what I'm asking is does everybody have it in them to improve vastly.