How to run faster in a 10k

Written by todd bowerman
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How to run faster in a 10k
Improving your 10K time requires dedication and sacrifice. (running image by Byron Moore from

Running a 10K race is a challenging endeavour that requires months of training. A 10-kilometer race translates to 6.2 miles, which means endurance will play a vital role in your time. If you are looking to improve on your last 10K time or simply want to run the best race possible, there are several training steps you can employ to try to better your time. Overall, commitment and consistency will be the most important aspects of preparing for the race.

Skill level:
Moderately Challenging


  1. 1

    Set a running schedule and stick to it. If you are going to run a 10K and are serious about improving your time, you will need to run almost every day. Scale back your cross-training activities and focus on running.

  2. 2

    Choose one day a week to be your "fast day." A fast day is when you run faster than your usual recommends 30 seconds to 90 seconds faster per mile than you can hold for a 10K run. This will be painful and will challenge your body, but you will also be building valuable pain tolerance that allows you to run faster and longer. Push yourself to the limit on these days to fulfil your running potential.

  3. 3

    Counter the fast running days with a couple of easy runs. These runs keep your body in the habit but will not push you to injury or exhaustion. Depending on your age and fitness level, you may be able to alternate hard and easy days, but beginning runners should take at least two easy days for each hard one.

  4. 4

    Focus on endurance. Many runners can improve their 10K run times by simply maintaining their current run speeds over longer distances. Try to keep your current pace, but run farther each week. As a rule, look to add an additional mile to your longest run each week, building up to the final 6.2-mile distance.

Tips and warnings

  • Running takes commitment. Expect to run five to seven days a week, sometimes twice a day. If you truly want to improve your 10K time, you will need to give up some of your free time to make it happen.

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