How to prepare for your 10K

How to prepare for your 10K

We bring together advice from a range of experts for your 10K race - including nutrition, pacing guidelines and performance tricks.

 

COUNTDOWN TO YOUR 10K

GearWhat to wear
If you've done a fun run, parkrun or another 5K then wear the same as that - trainers, running socks and breathable clothing - plus a sports bra for women.
 
FoodWhat to eat before a 10K
High carbohydrate snacks like low fibre cereal, bananas or toast are good but stick to what you know. If you run 10K in an hour then you'll burn around 800 calories.
Race-day nutrition
 
WaterWhat to drink
Fluid intake is important before, during and after the race, especially on hot days. Make sure you know where the drink stations are.
Race-day hydration
 
ChecklistBe organised
"Read the instructions you're sent beforehand, have your route to the venue planned and arrive with plenty of time to spare. You'll need to do things like collect your race number, go to the toilet and warm up properly." Martin Mallat, The Race Organiser
 
RunningHow to warm up
"By warming up you will gradually prepare your heart, lungs, muscles and tendons for the exertion. Poor performance, or even injury, could be the cost of taking short cuts." Neil Black, UK Athletics Performance Director
Step-by-step warm up


RACE STRATEGY

ClockHow long should it take?
"There's no set time. Our runners cover the whole spectrum, we have some dipping under 30 minutes and then others taking three hours, and we welcome them all." Vicki Robinson, Marketing Manager, Jane Tomlinson's Run For All Series

Steady startPace yourself
"Begin at a realistic speed and build it up - that’s what you should be doing to make sure it's enjoyable and that you’re not walking after the first kilometre." Mike Gratton, London Marathon winner and founder of 2:09 events
 
An effective way to calculate your target 10K pace is to double your 5K time and add a minute and a half. Aim to go a few seconds slower for each of the first five kilometres and then step up the pace in the second half of the event.

Projected 10K time = (2 x 5K time) + 90 seconds

Step by stepStep by step
"Don't focus on the 10km. Instead take it one kilometre at a time or break it down further if necessary - it might be every 100 yards, or to the next lamp post." Andy Barton, leading UK mental performance coach
 
Race tipRace tip
Another great tip is to count upwards for the first five kilometres and then down for the final five... 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1, Finish line!
More race-day tricks
 
Cool downCool down
Your race isn't quite over when you cross the line - whatever you do, don't jump straight in the car and head home. Walking and stretching for 15 minutes afterwards will make a massive difference to your recovery.
Cool down pointers

(Main photo: Jane Tomlinson Run For All Series)

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