I received a message from a reader that is training for a 10k and was looking for help with intervals and paces. I happen to be training for a 10k as well, the BolderBoulder. This race has been named America’s Best 10k. Why? For starters, this is the 3rd largest race in the US and the 7th in the world with over 50,000 runners!
Running through the streets of Boulder Colorado is awesome, but you finish in Folsom Field (where the University of Colorado Buffaloes play football). Talk about a finish line!
I know I’ve done up to a 50k but until now, it’s been at sea level. Training for a 10k at over 5,000 ft in altitute is a whole different cookie. Their slogan is ACTUALLY ‘ Sea Level is for Sissies’. Talk about a challenge!
Even with the moves I have tried to run at least 3 times a week, two 3 mile runs and a longer 4-5 mile run for the other. When I got here I felt so out of breath and winded because of the thinness of the air. Last Tuesday I ran a 5 mile loop and kept a 12 minute pace with a 45 second run/ 30 second walk interval. So far, this interval is working for me. When I get tired, I bring it down to 30:30 and just focus on keeping my pace.
Jeff Galloway has an excellent 10k training schedule on his site here . You build up to running 7 miles and then taper down to the race. Here are a few of my tips to make training for a 10k a little easier
- Start slow- don’t concern yourself with the pace if you can help it. It is all about putting those miles on your feet. If you feel up to it, you can make your weekday runs a tiny bit speedier than your long runs, but if you are just starting out, just focus on finishing the work out. This is why Jeff has a time workout (30-45 min) instead of distance.
- Different intervals for different folks- I have a great friend that is practically Jeff Galloways’ BFF. He’s done a number of his trainings, one on one coachings and meets him at every Disney race. You know what Jeff told him to do to get faster? Shorten his intervals. He runs a 10 sec run/ 50 sec walk, but during those 10 seconds, he practically sprints. Play around with your intervals until you find one you can carry throughout your entire workout. Race day performance will depend on your training, so if you train at 30:30, focus on doing this during the race.
- External timer- this has been a game changer for me. It allows me to change my intervals on the spot, depending on how I feel that day and for those of you that run with music or a phone, it keeps you from draining your battery. Mentally, this saved me during my 50k race when I was SO exhausted and I just focused on doing the intervals. Trust me, it’s worth the 20 bucks. ( Buy it here:Gymboss Interval Timer and Stopwatch – BLACK / YELLOW SOFTCOAT )
- Sign up for a race- When we moved to Colorado, I was coming off a crazy racing season. I was a little sad though because I didn’t have a race on the calendar and it’s hard to get motivated. Sign up for that race so you have some pressure, an end goal, and to visualize yourself crossing that finish line every time you train.
- Have fun!- Change your scenery, change your running group, but a new outfit. Whatever works for you but remember: this isn’t your day job, and no one is forcing you to be out there, so have some fun and enjoy the runner’s high!
Jeff Galloway has so many resources for starting out, and of course, I am always happy to help! Just shoot me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and I’d be happy to help!