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I have joined a charity race in 1 and a half month's time. (I have 7 weeks before the race)

My PB for 10k is 48:45.

I have been running on and off since then but I can still run a 26 min 5k if I push hard.

Is my goal realistic and what's the best way to achieve it? What sort of schedule do I need?

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How many miles a week do you run currently? –  Rhea Apr 1 '11 at 22:32
    
Around 10-15 miles –  rmx Apr 1 '11 at 22:56
    
Heh - my best 10k time is 77 minutes :) Longest week, 60km. Keep it up, young man! –  Joe Blow Oct 7 '11 at 20:39

3 Answers 3

up vote 4 down vote accepted

Since you are only running 10-15 miles/week and your race is in 7 weeks with a goal of sub 45 min, it's going to be tough (unless you are an incredible athlete). Had you been following the training runs from Cool Running's 10K schedule, you would have ran 28+ miles this week.

To work on your speed you need to do speed drills and you need to up your running. It's not really a realistic goal... HOWEVER...

Cool Running's training schedule is somewhat conservative. That schedule is for a 40 min - 48 min finish time and you said you can already do it in 48:45 min. You can try out the training run for the week you should be on and see how you feel. If you feel good, keep going with the schedule!

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Well I ran about 20 miles on fri, sat, sun this week. I know I'm risking injury but I feel fine so I think I'll just carry on with the schedule. –  rmx Apr 4 '11 at 13:47
    
Nice, you've doubled your mileage in just a weekend and are feeling good? That says a lot about your physique. Def. carry on with the schedule and just listen to your body. Don't worry about your pace for the longer runs, best just to get the mileage in. –  Rhea Apr 5 '11 at 17:03
    
20 miles per week is more than enough for a 10k. What you need is speed training. On top of 400m and 800m intervalls, I like to finish all my other training with 8-10 50m sprints (85% of your maximal speed). Your legs needs to know how to go very fast if you want to push your pace. 50m sprints might sound out of line for a 10k race but they're probably more useful than most of the mileage you do. –  philgo20 Nov 22 '12 at 0:21

I've never managed to get below 46 minutes for a 10k because there is actually quite a big fitness and training gap with just those two minutes. As Rhea points out it's down to miles per week and then raising the tempo from 4:36 km/minute to 4:30 (I think) or using another strategy such as increasing the tempo post 5k.

Increasing the weekly mileage will make shaving a few seconds per minute off easier, however the speed training is important for the races as you're rarely able to keep one consistent pace with a lot of runners.

I've linked it a few times on the site but the Runner's World Smart Coach can really help, and also doing the speed training on a treadmill. I realise that as someone who hasn't done a sub 45 minute race my advice is really just anecdotal, however I believe enough miles per week turns it into a breeze.

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Thanks Chris. I am upping my mileage to around 25-30 miles /wk and mixing in lots of speedwork. And its 4:20 for sub 45 mins btw –  rmx Apr 2 '11 at 14:26

McMillian's running calculator does a pretty good job of estimating races with a reasonable distance with proper training..

Assuming you can do that 26 min 5k, it translates into a 54:01 assuming proper training. To get to 48, you'd have to run 40 seconds or so faster for each mile. That's a chunk of speed to knock off.

I'd ignore you PB time unless it was more recent than the 26 min 5k.

Increase your base and the times will go down.

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