Running a 10K (6.2 miles) is a popular event for runners and can be a stepping stone to taking part in half-marathons and marathons. But no matter your skill level, you must prepare and train for races of all sorts.

Remember to always consult a physician before taking up a new training regimen.

10K Training Plan For Beginners: This plan is perfect for those who are new to running a 10K. You’ll begin your week with strength training followed by a 3-mile run the following day. A mix of cross-training, plyometrics and longer-distance runs are also incorporated throughout the week. Fridays are for rest.

10K Training Plan For Intermediate Runners: The intermediate plan is for runners with a few races under their belts. This training schedule combines strength training and running as well as speed work, tempo runs, plyometrics and cross-training. And of course, as always, rest.

10K Training Plan For Advanced Runners: This training plan is best suited for 10K veterans. The schedule is a bit more demanding, but still incorporates the same core training methods as those above, like strength training, tempo runs, speed work and more. Rest time is interspersed throughout the plan.

The Best Way To Stick To Your 10k Training Plan

Training for a 10k is incredibly rewarding. If you stick to a 10k training plan, you will cross that finish line before you know it. The key to a successful 10k race is regular training to achieve gradual, sustainable improvements.

Tips For Sticking To Your 10k Training Plan

Build Up Your Training

To begin, find a training plan that builds. A 10k is 6.2-mile run, and that is no easy feat. Given your running experience, that may be a short distance and it may be a long distance. But regardless, a 10k race requires intentional preparation no matter what.

Find a training program that builds up your training and increases mileage over time. For new runners, aim to find a program that begins by utilizing the run-walk method. For your first few runs, head out for 20 or 30 minutes, and walk for two minutes and jog for one. You can repeat that pattern through your whole walk/run, and over time you can decrease the amount of time you take walk breaks, and increase the amount of time you run.

Easing into your training has several benefits. First and foremost, gradual mileage increases will prevent injuries. Jumping into long, hard runs too quickly can result in injuries and/or pains that might cut your training short and leave you unprepared for race day.

Gradual improvements, on the other hand, will allow your body to adapt and recover after each small push so that you are improving sustainably. In addition, gradual improvements will make it so that none of your training sessions are completely unbearable.

Pushing yourself too hard during a training session will build a negative impression in your mind when you think of your training, which cuts directly into your motivation. Instead, you want to feel inspired and positive about your 10k training, and small improvements will allow you to feel accomplished, without leaving a harsh, negative memory of training in your mind.

Also, note that your training schedule does not necessarily need to be a 10k training schedule. A half marathon training plan could also work if that is your preference. However, as you move closer to race day, just consider adjusting the half marathon mileage a bit so that your training is more tailored to a 10k.

Focus On Form

Continuing on with training tips, be sure that your training plan emphasizes proper run form. Proper run form is another crucial piece in preventing injuries.

If your plan does not directly teach proper running form, consider watching a few videos before you head out. Strength training will contribute tremendously to your run form, which is governed mostly by the proper engagement of your muscles.

This means you’ll need a plan that incorporates strength training. And in addition to shaping your run form, strength training days are a great way to break up your running schedule so that it doesn’t feel too monotonous or repetitive.

Hill workouts are a great way to strength train while improving your running, and they are a great addition to your training schedule even if your racecourse is flat. However, hill workouts maximize the importance of form, so be sure you are extremely focused on your run form as you climb.

Take Rest Days

Your body will need rest to be at its best come race day. So, when your training schedule has a rest day in it, follow that and rest. Truly allow your body the time it needs to recover and adapt. If you don’t, you are actually missing out on those gradual improvements that will make you a better runner.

While training every single day may seem conducive to your 10k goals, it is actually a quick way to run your body into the ground, and it can expose you to overuse or exhaustion injuries.

That said, mobility should be a daily occurrence. Even on your rest days, get out that foam roller or tennis ball and give your muscles some attention. If you can find a sauna or have the time to run a hot bath with epsom salt, try it. The better your muscles are able to recover, the more valuable the rest of your training will be.

Never Skip The Warm Up

Much like your rest days, your warm ups are in your training plan for a reason. No matter how short on time you are, the warm up is not the part of the workout to cut. Warming up is crucial in preventing injuries and getting your muscles ready to work.

If your body is not prepared for a tough run effort, it may get a little surprised when you pick up the pace or head up a hill. And when your body is not prepared, it can tense up and injuries can creep in. This is why the warm up is so important.

Always incorporate some dynamic stretches and warm up drills such as skipping, high knees, and lateral runs before you head out.

And feel free to incorporate these drills mid-run as well. They will help to wake up muscle groups that do not work as hard in your running motion, and can help remind you which muscles need to engage for proper running form.

Now that you know what to look for in finding your 10k running plan, you can start searching. Hopefully following your training schedule will make training simple. And if you simply show up every day and follow what your plan tells you, even if that is to rest, you’ll feel at ease come race day, and you’ll be smiling as you cross that finish line.

The Best 10K Workout


After running countless 10Ks and coaching runners who have run countless more, I’ve found one workout to be the absolute best to prepare you for the distance. It’s not an easy workout and you probably can’t do it right away, so you’ll need to build up to it with the sequence of workouts outlined here, which, when combined with supplementary workouts, creates an exceptional training plan for your next goal 10K.


If you can perform three 2-mile repeats at your goal 10K pace in the last one to two weeks before your race, you will achieve your goal time. Period. It’s a simple workout but oh-so-hard to accomplish. As such, you must build up to it, and this buildup of workouts turns out to be some of the best training you can do to run a fast 10K.


Eight weeks out from your 10K, run six 1-mile repeats at your goal 10K pace, taking 3 to 4 minutes recovery jog between each. Don’t be surprised if you struggle in this workout. Many athletes become worried that their goal is out of reach, but trust me: You just need to complete the workout sequence and you’ll be ready. One thing I find helps is to just focus on goal 10K pace, not faster. Some runners try to “beat the workout” by running faster but that isn’t the goal. Start at goal pace and simply hang on.


Six weeks out from your 10K, advance to the following workout: Run a 2-mile repeat at your goal 10K pace then take a 5-minute recovery jog. Next, run four 1-mile repeats at goal 10K pace, taking 3 to 4 minutes recovery jog between each. As with Workout No. 1, you will get in 6 miles of running at your goal pace.


Four weeks out from the race, the workout advances yet again. This time, run two 2-mile repeats at goal 10K pace. Again, take a 5-minute recovery jog after each 2-mile repeat. Then, perform two 1-mile repeats at goal pace, taking 3 minutes recovery between each. By now, you should be feeling much more ready to attack your goal time. Your body is becoming calloused to the mental and physical stress of 10K pace. If, however, you’re struggling to hit your goal pace even on the first 2-mile repeat, then your proposed goal pace is too aggressive and you should re-evaluate.


After this buildup of workouts, you’re ready to attack the ultimate 10K workout. I suggest you perform this workout nine to 12 days before your race to allow enough time to recover before the event. Start with your usual warm-up (which you should perform for each workout described in this article), then run three 2-mile repeats at your goal 10K pace. Take a 5-minute recovery jog between each repeat. Prepare for this intense workout like you will your race — be well-recovered, properly hydrated and fueled, use the equipment you’ll use in the race, run at the time of day that you’ll be racing.


While the 10K buildup workouts occur every other week, the in-between weeks provide a great opportunity to perform other important 5K and 10K workouts. I like 200m and 400m repeats performed at 5K effort. I find that running slightly faster repeats on the in-between weeks makes 10K race pace feel easier. You may even perform a 5K race in preparation for your 10K. I also recommend at least one tempo run during this buildup. The pace will be slightly slower than 10K pace but will build your stamina for the goal event.


Week #1: 6 x 1M

3-minute jog between 1M repeats

Week #2: 10-12 x 400m

Run the 400m repeats at 5K race pace; 200m jog between

Week #3: 2M + 4 x 1M

5-minute jog between 2M repeats, 3-minute jog between 1M repeats

Week #4: 3M Tempo Run or 5K Race

One simple prediction method is to double your 5K time and add 1 minute to get your 10K time. Are you on track for your goal 10K time?

Week #5: 2 x 2M + 2 x 1M

5-minute jog between 2M repeats, 3-minute jog between 1M repeats

Week #6: 20-24 x 200m

Run the 200m repeats at 5K race pace; 200m jog between

Week #7: 3 x 2M

Run the 2M repeats at goal 10K race pace; 5 minutes jog between

Week #8: RACE: 10K

Want to see this workout in action for you? My 10K training plans are here.

For every distance between 800 meters and the marathon, these scientifically-based training plans include your McMillan Calculator training paces integrated, coach’s notes, and access to our prehab routines. Plus, the plans are delivered on a runner-friendly training log platform. Learn more.

Take your running to the next level. Join the McMillan Run Team. Your training plan is included and you’ll get coaching access with me.

Avoid the chilly weather and train indoors for your winter 10k run with this expert-led interval treadmill training programme.

In the winter, when it’s cold and wet outside, it can be easy to become demotivated in your fitness goals. One great way to ensure that you keep up your fitness at this time of year is to set yourself a goal. Entering a winter run could provide additional motivation, and training in the gym will help you avoid the cold.

This treadmill training session is designed to help you build endurance over time so that you can achieve a solid time in a 10k run.

Throughout the workout I’ll refer to the RPE (Rated Perceived Exertion) scale. This is a scale of one to ten, one being the lowest intensity, ten being your maximum effort. Using this RPE scale in each section of the workout will help you to work to your personal limits.

You should find that if you do this workout twice a week in conjunction with a continuous run you will have improved aerobic fitness and in a couple of months you’ll be ready for your 10k winter run.

The steps

Warm up

Begin with a 5 minute progressive warm up, build your speed from 2 RPE to 7 RPE.

Main Workout

  • 5 minutes at around a 6 RPE
  • 1 minute easy recovery
  • 4 minutes at around 7 RPE
  • 1 minute easy recovery
  • 3 minutes at around 8 RPE
  • 1 minute easy recovery
  • 2 minutes at around 8 RPE
  • 1 minute easy recovery
  • 2 minute at near maximum effort (9 RPE)
  • 1 minute easy recovery


Stretch for 5 minutes

Training tips

One of the most common reasons people fail to finish a 10k run is pushing themselves too hard at the start of the race, leaving their bodies too exhausted to continue to the end. Use tempo and trial runs to gain an understanding of the paces you can maintain. This should help you to focus on finding a comfortable starting pace that you can maintain throughout the run.

Another common issue preventing runners from finishing is injury. You can help yourself avoid injury by doing a mobility workout for the whole body for at least ten minutes a day.

Ensuring you get at least seven hours of sleep every night, drinking at least two litres of water on rest days and more on training days will also help you to stay and feel healthy in the lead in to the run.

for more 10k running advice from Nuffield Health.

Runners all across the country are training for spring races, but the weather isn’t exactly conducive to interval workouts and long runs. The East Coast has been pounded with snow, it’s bitterly cold in the Midwest, and Pacific Northwesterners are counting down the days until the sun is out for more than 8 hours each day. As a result, it’s not just resolutioners hitting the gym – runners training for everything from the 5K to marathon are opting for the treadmill.

The monotony of steady pace running with no change in scenery or perception of moving can mentally fatigue even the strongest of runners. The origins of the treadmill illuminate this phenomenon: the treadmill was originally used as an instrument of torture and reform for prisoners in 19th century England, due to its monotonous nature. It’s no wonder that we runners opt to battle brutal winter conditions rather than run on the treadmill; however, slick or snowy roads, limited daylight, and extremely cold temperatures make speedwork incredibly challenging to do outdoors in winter.

A consensus amongst runners is that the more often you press buttons on the treadmill, the more quickly the run passes by. Once you start varying the incline and pace every few minutes, the treadmill becomes more manageable.

You can find a variety of treadmill workouts online, but not all treadmill workouts have the specificity of your race in mind. For runners training for spring PRs, these treadmill workouts from the 5K to marathon will make the treadmill fun while optimizing your training for your race.

A Note about Incline

With the exception of hill workouts, set your treadmill incline to what feels most comfortable. This may be 0% or 1%, based on your preference, gait, and type of terrain you usually run on outside. Do not set speed intervals any higher than 1.5%, lest you change your speed intervals into hill repeats.

Treadmill Workouts from the 5K to Marathon

5K Treadmill Workout: Hill Repeats

The workout:
1 mile warm up
3 x (1 minute uphill hard, 1 minute easy, 1 minute uphill hard, 1 minute easy, 2 minutes uphill hard, 2 minutes easy)
1 mile cool down

Perhaps this is just my perception, but I feel like I am going to fly off the back of the treadmill when running at 5K pace or slightly faster. The treadmill skews your perception of effort, which can make 5K pace feel harder than the same pace would on a track.

According to a 2013 study published in the International Journal of Sports Physiology and Performance, hill repeats of any length resulted in a 2% improvement in 5K time for well-trained runners. Hill repeats at 5K effort (not pace) significantly improve running economy, which translates to how much oxygen you use at a given pace. The higher your running economy, the faster you can run.

For hill repeats on the treadmill, set the incline to 4-6% and set the pace to what feels hard. Do not run these intervals at goal 5K pace – you will burn out before the end of the workout. Aim for either a pace that feels like an 8-9 on a scale of 1 (walking) to 10 (100 m sprint), or use this handy chart to find your approximate equivalent 5K pace for a given incline. For the recovery intervals, set the incline to 0% and run at a very easy effort.

10K Treadmill Workout: Progressive 1K Intervals

The workout:
1-2 mile warm up
2 x 1K at 10 seconds per mile slower than 10K pace (2 minute recovery jog)
2-4 x 1K at 10K pace (2 minute recovery jog)
2 x 1K at 10 seconds per mile faster than 10K pace (2 minute recovery jog)
1 mile cool down

Intervals are one of the best workouts for the treadmill, but long repeats can become monotonous after the fourth or fifth interval. This variation on an effective 10K workout – 6-8 x 1K at 10K pace – starts with intervals 10 seconds per mile slower than 10K pace (~15K pace) and finishes at 10 seconds per mile faster than 10K pace (~5K-8K pace). The change in pace maintains variety throughout the entire workout and breaks the run up into more manageable segments.

If your treadmill has a visual track, 1K equals 2.5 laps around the track. If you are tracking by distance, you can either run 0.62 miles or, for an easier number, 0.60 miles.

Half Marathon Treadmill Workout: Mixed Pace 2-Mile Repeats

The workout:
1-2 mile warm up
2-3 x (1 mile at half marathon pace, 1 mile at 10K pace) with 3 minute recovery jog
1 mile cool down

This variation on two-mile repeats (one of my favorite workouts for the half marathon) involves changing the pace within each repeat, making the workout pass by more quickly. This workout is challenging, so you want to complete it about 4-6 weeks before your marathon.

After a warm-up, run 2 miles continuously: the first at half marathon pace, the second at 10K pace. Depending on your overall weekly mileage and fitness level, you would complete two to three of these repeat with a 3 minute jog in between.

Marathon Treadmill Workout: Mixed Bag Long Run

The Workout:
2-4 miles easy, varying the incline from 0-3% every few minutes
5-6 x (1 mile at marathon pace, 1 mile easy)
2-4 miles easy, varying the incline from 0-3% every few minutes

Treadmill running seems to distend time, and suddenly a 10 mile long run feels like a 30 mile run. But during marathon training, you can’t skip on those 16, 18, and 20 mile long runs, even when the wind chills are below zero.

The solution to enduring long runs on the treadmill is to divide them into manageable segments and constantly vary incline and pace. This workout can be adjusted for 14-20 miles, depending on your long run for the week. During the easy paced miles, you vary the incline every few minutes to engage your mind and activate different muscles. The middle miles consist of repeats of 1 mile at marathon pace, 1 mile easy – enough variety to beat boredom without turning your long run into a race effort.

Use these tips to help you survive (and maybe even enjoy) long runs on the treadmill – even with a good workout, a long run still can be mentally tough to do indoors!

Whether you are training for a 5K or marathon, remember to take your easy days easy – even when running on the treadmill Try this treadmill easy run workout to help you beat boredom.

Linking up with Coaches’ Corner and Wild Workout Wednesday!

Have you ever trained for a race mostly on the treadmill?

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Designed to structure your Treadmill Trainer runs and provide you with a day-by-day training plan to run an unbelievably fast 10k!
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You’ll have a day-by-day running schedule to let you know exactly which runs to do, for how long, and when. If you want to know how to run a 10k, then this is your answer.
Whether you’re a beginner who can’t run more than 5 minutes at a time, an advanced runner who wants to run a sub-35 minute 10k, or anywhere in between… you will find more than what you need when you order the 10k Training Program.
Order now and you will have access to all 3 programs (beginner, intermediate, advanced). So, you can choose which one best suits your current fitness level (and you’ll always have the other ones to use later if you wish).
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See below for the recommended Treadmill Trainer workouts for each one of the 10k training programs that comes with this download.

Run-Walk-Run to Faster Times, Faster Recovery

You can gain control over the amount of fatigue in a race or long run by taking walk breaks, starting at the beginning. According to numerous surveys, you’ll also run faster–13 minutes faster in a marathon with walk breaks than in a continuously run event.

Walk breaks help you mentally break up a challenging race or workout by concentrating on one segment at a time. Because you erase a lot of the fatigue with each walk break, your legs are strong at the finish–you can celebrate that evening and recover fast.

Erasing Fatigue

Most of us, even when untrained, can walk for several miles before fatigue sets in simply because walking is an activity that we can do efficiently for hours. Running takes more work because you have to lift your body off the ground and then absorb the shock of the landing.

The continuous use of running muscles produces much more fatigue, aches and pains than running at the same pace while taking walk breaks. If you walk before your running muscles start to get tired, you allow the muscles to recover instantly–increasing your capacity and extending the distance, while reducing the chance of next-day soreness.

The method involves strategy. By using a ratio of running and walking, adjusted for the pace per mile, you can manage your fatigue. Using this fatigue-reduction tool early gives you the muscle resources and the mental confidence to cope with the challenges that can come later. Even when you don’t need the extra strength and resiliency bestowed by the method, you will feel better during and after your run.

The run-walk method is very simple: Run for a short segment and then take a walk break–and keep repeating this pattern. Beginners will alternate very short run segments with short walks. Even elite runners find that walk breaks on long runs allow them to recover faster. There is no need to be totally exhausted at the end of any long run.

Here are some tips:

A Short and Gentle Walking Stride
It’s better to walk slowly, with a short stride. Long strides can cause shin irritation. Relax and enjoy the walk.

No Need to Eliminate the Walk Breaks
Some beginners assume that they must work toward the day when they don’t have to take any walk breaks. This is up to the individual, but is not recommended. Remember that you decide what ratio of run-walk-run to use. As you adjust the run-walk to your liking, you gain control over your fatigue.

How to Keep Track of the Walk Breaks
There are several watches which can be set to beep when it’s time to walk, and then when it’s time to start running again.

Walk Breaks on Long Runs
Walk breaks can be taken according to the following schedule. Feel free to walk more or cut both of the segments in half. For example: 1:00 run/2:00 walk could be converted to :30 run/1:00 walk.

Note: In 5K and 10K races, many veterans find that they run faster times when walking every mile for the first half of the race.

Walk breaks:

  • Give you control over the way you feel
  • Erase fatigue
  • Allow endorphins to collect during each walk break — you feel good
  • Break up the distance into manageable units (“I can go for two more minutes”)
  • Speed recovery
  • Reduce the chance of aches, pains and injury
  • Allow you to feel good afterward–carrying on the rest of your day without debilitating fatigue
  • Give you all of the endurance of the distance of each session–without the pain
  • Allow older or heavier runners to recover fast, and feel as good or better than the younger (slimmer) days

For more information, see Jeff’s books Marathon, Half-Marathon, Running — A Year Round Plan, Walking — The Complete Book and Galloway’s Book on Running, 2nd Ed. These are available, autographed, from Join Jeff’s blog:

10k treadmill training plan

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