10km training programmes for beginners and improvers
These schedules are made up of a variety of sessions. A combination of slow, steady runs, interval sessions and the all-important rest days, will deliver you to the start of the race in great shape and eager to cross the Start Line.
If you are completely new to running, scroll down for our complete beginners' programm, which you should tackle before taking on the 10km training schedules below.
The fartlek sessions in these schedules will offer you the flexibility to run hard when you are feeling strong and to choose how long to spend running more slowly to recover. Aim to run harder for at least 50 per cent of the distance you cover in the session, and vary the length of your recoveries. This type of session is good preparation for the type of variable effort that you will encounter in a long run on an undulating course or in a race.
No hill sessions feature in these schedules, but if you would like to run hills, substitute them for one of the hard midweek sessions, such as intervals or fartlek. Limit your hill sessions to one per week. If there are no hills where you live, try increasing the gradient to more than five per cent if you run on the treadmill. Hill running will build your strength and speed while also improving your mental confidence.
Building endurance is the foundation of successful distance running – speed will come afterwards. The easy runs within the schedules are not only designed to condition your body but also to develop the confidence you need to enable you to run as far as the race demands without breaking down. Check that you are not running too quickly by keeping up a conversation with a friend. If you are struggling to gasp out a reply, then you need to slow down.
A rest day means no running rather than no exercise at all. If you want to exercise on rest days, then try doing a non-weight bearing cross-training exercise, such as swimming or cycling.
You can access our beginner's and improver's 10km training schedules below. If you are new to running, start by following our complete beginner's plan – from zero to 30 minutes in six weeks.
You can also download official beginner and intermediate training guides here.