Wednesday 13 November 2019

#My1000Hours: Training to improve your 5k or 10k race time

Mark McCabe

For those of you who want to improve your race time, the training demands are much greater than those of a novice runner.

Aspects of the more advanced programmes can be quite demanding on the body so a good level of fitness and previous experience in racing 5k and 10k distances are required before moving onto the advanced programme. Again, the sessions can be modified slightly depending on your fitness levels. Here is a brief explanation of the sessions.

Long Run or Easy Run: These are a very important part of your training and improve your ability to burn fat as a source of energy. You should run at a pace that you can converse at but may need to take some deep breaths mid conversation.

Interval sessions: The Interval sessions used in these programmes are 400m repeats. Each repeat should be run at the pace you would run a 5k race at and you should aim to finish each run in approximately the same time. These are a good way to get your body accustomed to running fast and also improve your running economy (or the amount of oxygen you can intake at a given pace). These sessions can be taxing on the body and take a couple of days to fully recover from.

Progressive runs: These runs are a good way to improve your stamina and become used to running fast without putting too much stress on the body. You will recover quicker from these sessions than from interval sessions.

Strength/injury prevention: Developing good movement skills and muscle & tendon strength through resistance training can help prevent against injury. Check out the videos on our website for exercise demonstration.

Rest: Rest days are important to allow your body to recover and adapt to training stimulus.

Cross-training: Cross-training is an excellent way to improve aerobic fitness while allowing the body to recover from training and also providing an alternative training stimulus. Cross-training could consist of cycling, swimming, elliptical or any time of training that won't place major stress on the body. These sessions should be easy and thought of as recovery sessions.

Mobility: Good joint mobility is important to help prevent injuries and movement deficiencies and promote appropriate muscle activation. Foam-rolling the major muscle groups is a simple way to encourage good mobility.

The Irish Independent My1000Hours 5k/10k in association with Berocca will take place on Saturday March 7.

You can sign-up for the event at www.FITMagazine.ie/events.

For more information on the work of the My1000Hours team, follow them at @my1000hours or go to www.my1000hours.com.

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