Which programme to choose?

As someone who is now quite comfortable running 5k x3 a week I'm looking to increase my distance. There are obviously a number of B210k programmes out there as well as the less programmed route of increasing one of your runs every week by 10% and getting to 10k that way.

So, I'm hoping that people will give their experiences and feedback on some of the following: the ways they made it to 10k, what they felt worked well, what they wished they'd done differently, whether they used any programmes (B210K, Hal Higson, or otherwise), etc.

13 Replies

  • I did a mish/mash of a number of plans ! :) What I did notice on the journey is that many (including myself) who could easily run 5K's after completing C25k, suddenly had "problems" with the 10 minute run/walk intervals of B210K. The only reason I could fathom this is to think that we all became either too confident or just simply wanted to race ahead too fast!!! The best advice given to newbie C25K'ers is to just put in enough effort on any particular day to "complete that day's task" - no more and no less. The same advice goes for more advanced training - with the proviso that each day's task should have a specific known purpose/training effect ( in simpler words - why am I doing what I am going to do today? )

  • I'll certainly take this on board, only exert enough energy to get the job done. Good advice.

  • For me, it took a lot of hard work to move away from walk breaks and I just didn't want to feel I was going back to them at the time. However, a little wiser I have used walk breaks to work through leg issues and keep running. I don't want to run fast either so tempo runs just don't do anything for my old legs

  • Lots of people did this -3 runs a week consisting of 1X5K, 1X3K'ish of hills or speed or intervals, then increasing 1 run by 1K each week' or even by half a K depending on how you feel. Make sure your TOTAL weekly increase is no more than 10% and take a drop in mileage every fourth week or so.

    Your post made me look back at how I built up and it was a tad irratic! I wasn't in a hurry and just wanted to enjoy the ride and I must say it was a blast. 10K is still my favourite distance. My increases were 5.5, 6, 6.5, 7, 7, 6, 7, 8, 8, 9, 10.

    You can also do some strength and cross training on the days in between. It all adds up to a stronger running body 😊

    Enjoy your training.

  • I'm really looking forward to it. 10k seems a good distance to aim for regularly. Thanks for the advice, the 'rest' every 4 weeks seems a very good idea.

  • Training plans do provide structure but can be inflexible and end up feeling somewhat tyrannical, from my perspective. Two times 5ks and a longer weekend run have been my weekly régime since I completed C25k. Observe the 10% rule and make sure you enjoy your runs..... don't find yourself slavishly following a plan that doesn't fit with how you feel.

    10k is my favourite distance, requiring little preparation or fuelling, but long enough to forget about the world for an hour. Oh how I long to get off the IC and back out there again.

  • Yes, exactly this. I'm finding 5k a little short time wise (though I'm certainly not quick). A longer run for a bit more headspace sounds great.

  • Why are on back on the IC IT? I know you did a stint earlier this year with a non-running related injury but then you got out again. ........

  • Same back trouble I had in January. Nothing to do with running, just general wear and tear. Patience will win the day, but I am already aware of my fitness ebbing away, which is so frustrating.

  • Sorry to read that. I hope it settles down and you can get back doing what you love. It's hard being away from running so I sympathise 🙁

  • I didn't follow a plan at all - just ran three times a week with two 5Ks and one longer run, like IannodaTruffe. It worked for me. Enjoy your new challenge!

  • I didn't plan, just ran a bit longer and a bit longer when I had the time and inclination. One thing that almost always seems to get forgotten is the salience of the route rather than precise measurements. So on the canal towpath it would be about running to that bridge or the end or that bench. Only when I had set myself a goal of achieving it by a certain date and that date was bearing down on me did I take myself out to a trail and run 5k out so I knew I'd have to come back 5k one way or another!

  • When I graduated, I started Zenlabs C210K coming in on week 9. It was an excellent programme. However, for me, as I am not super fit my legs quickly began saying "enough"! I just don't think I was ready for tempo runs and at that time walk breaks wasn't something I wanted to re-introduce. I dropped back to doing 3 x 5k to recover and then started to do a once a week "long run" - started with a 5.5k, then a 6, 7, 8 and finally a 10k. This is how I continue to run 6 months after graduation.

    I did have a painful shin issue which knocked me back. I managed this by continuing with 5k but with run-walking. If you are very fit, programmes are definitely worth a try but there is always the more flexible option of doing it your own way

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