Right now I am training to run a 10k race here in Doha. Yep, I have a 10k race running plan in action and I am raring to go.
The last time I ran a 10k race was all the way back in 2014, heck the last time I RAN 10k was back then. That was nearly THREE years ago.
Yet, one more baby later, here I am again. Signed up ready to do the Doha College 10k race on the 17th of November.
Except I’m not ready. I’m a long way from ready.
Lucky for me my husband has spent the summer marathon training here in the heat of Doha, with a calf injury and some minor surgery putting him out of contention for the Budapest marathon he was due to run this month, he has turned his attention to me. And my 10k race running plan or lack thereof.
After my first step of running wildly on a treadmill, having a mental block at running for any longer than 90 seconds, stopping it and walking. I first downloaded a plan called “Bridge to 10k” which aims on increasing your plodding distance.
I completed week one. Three times last week I’ve went out. I walked the 5 minutes to our local park, then ran for 10 minutes, walked for 1 minute, repeated four times, before walking the 5 minutes back home.
Distances of 6.05km, 6.15km and 5.93km covered. All at various points of the day ranging from the cooler evening to the sun blaring down in the morning (that would have been the 5.93km run….)
All of them a long way off 10km. All of them leaving me feeling that I couldn’t take another step. More than that, all of them a long way off the time that I would actually want to do.
My first, last, and only 10km race I ran in a time of 1h02m04s and I’d love to beat that. More than that, I would love to come in at under an hour.
At the moment if I keep going at the pace I’m going I’m looking at 1h10m PLUS.
I know that I have it in me to run faster and part of my problem at the moment, other than lack of fitness, is that it is HOT here. I mean scorching. My morning run, where I finished by 8am, was at a temperature of 33°.
That is hot.
Enter my husband
With his marathon planning genius behind him he set to work on setting me a 10k race running plan.
Apparently plodding away for however long each week was all well and good, but it wasn’t specific enough to target what I actually needed to do.
It would get miles in my legs, which apparently is very important, but it wouldn’t be consistent nor would it improve my speed.
Which I wanted to do.
So he set about writing a plan that would take my shuffle from an average pace of 7:15 min/km on a good day, giving a time of 1h 12m 30s to a running plan that should see me complete the race in 1h 05m.
Again, this is slower than my ideal. It’s also slower than my previous race of 1h 02m 04s where I ran an average pace of 6:12 min/km.
BUT it’s a plan. And it’s a start.
The 10k race running plan
What he has done for me is work on a four day on, three day off week. Mixing up all the runs to include the following:
- Fast run
- Interval run
- Distance run
- Recovery run
Which apparently will mean that my legs, and my pace, will thank me.
Two runs into it and he’s shouting at me for not following the pace set, but I felt good so I sped up. Which apparently isn’t the point on a recovery run. But still.
Already I can see progress. I’m not sure if it is the mental idea of following a running plan, or the fact that I’m coming home to report on my progress, or indeed just the fact that someone believes I can do it. But instead of running for 10 minutes and being desperate to walk I am running for 35-40 minutes.
And yes, others might be faster. Yes, others might be running further.
But this is my goal. My accomplishment.
And I’m excited.
My personal 10k race running plan**
*I use a TomTom Cardio Spark to map and record my running. So often I felt that as a beginner runner I didn’t need a fancy GPS watch, yet it has been invaluable to me – and definitely makes it to my essentials for a beginner runner!