10K Training Plan

A progressive, achievable training plan for a beginner or returning runner

10k Training
Photo: Ronald Lee

Is this you?

  • You have never run before and you’d like to try
  • You used to run but haven’t run in three months or longer
  • You tried to run once but it was too hard
  • You’ve been injured and want to be healthy and run again but need some guidance

In this program you’ll alternate walking time with running time and comfortably progress to magical “10-and-ones” in 10 weeks: that’s 10 minutes of running alternating with one minute of walking… and you’ll be able to complete 5K-10K easy-peasy! Choose your three days but ensure you don’t run two days in a row.

Coaching Tips

  • Be patient. Most people tend to do too much too fast too soon.
  • Stick to the schedule — one week at a time – three times per week. No more and no less.
  • Make sure you have good supportive shoes when you start the program.
  • Stay at an easy talking pace.
  • Do a dynamic warm-up to get the circulation going.
  • Include static stretches afterwards in your cool down.
  • Arms establish your rhythm. Hold your body tall, shoulders square and relaxed, arms bent at about 90 degrees, and elbows tight to your sides with a relaxed little swing of the arms, forward and back. Careful not to cross the midline of the body.
  • Technique. Most people overstride. Think “light on your feet.” Feet landing on your midfoot under your base of support, and very little knee lift. Keep your knees soft with a slight bend as you land. Think of a boxer as he dances in the ring with quick little steps.
  • Take a big breath in every so often. Then exhale fully and completely.
  • Keep a logbook and record your successes.
  • Take a break from the pavement or asphalt.  
  • Pay attention to any aches or discomfort. If you feel discomfort then scale back.
  • Invite a friend or canine creature to follow the program with you.

Download a PDF of the 10K, 10-Week Training Plan.


Read this story in the digital edition of IMPACT Magazine.

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Looking for running inspiration? Training for a race? We have first-rate training programs designed by some of the best running coaches for your next 10K, Half-Marathon, Marathon and 70.3 distances, plus an epic Road Running Shoe Review to help you get started on the right foot. Plus – our annual RACE SOURCE GUIDE features hundreds of races that you can participate in from virtual to in-person.

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