Guide to running 10K

You’ve made the commitment to help curb your cigarette addiction by replacing it with a positive lifestyle change: you have set yourself a goal of running 10k.

As we spoke about in our previous post, physical exercise is a great way to beat cigarette cravings. Fantastic, go you! The next step is to detail out a 10k training plan that makes sense to you, in terms of affordable time and realistic goals.

Planning to run 10k

Your running plan is going to vary depending on whether you are totally new to running, or are a bit more adept. If this is a whole new world to you, then it’s recommended that you should not put the horse before the cart—take it slow. At this stage, consistency and making a habit out of running is the most important factor to consider, it’s recommended that you run 3 times a week hitting between 3-5 kilometers each session. If you’re a bit more advanced, you should be looking at 5 runs each week at 5-7 kilometers each session. All the while building up to running 10k.

This is by no means a set in stone amount. You should be pushing yourself but if you’re finding the exertion is affecting your consistency and motivation, don’t be afraid to pull back, or even change it up! Every couple of sessions, go for a swim or a cycle, which does a great job of keeping your cardiovascular system up to scratch. It tones different muscles while providing a bit of a refreshing change of pace.

There are a number of great running 10k training plans available for free such as the Hal Higdon Training Guide which includes hugely beneficial cross-training and strength programs. There’s also the Cool Running Training Guide which revolves around speed-training. Both are fantastic and get the job done provided you stick to them with dedication!

Health and Injury

If you’re running more you’ll be outside more, fighting the extremities and adversarial weather therefore your immune system is going to be taking a bit of a hit. Be sure to adjust your diet accordingly; that means loads of vitamin C (found in oranges, cauliflower, lemons, kale etc.) and zinc (found in seafood, beef, lamb, spinach etc.). Injury is another issue. It’s hugely important that you include more protein in your diet as your lower body will be routinely destroying and rebuilding muscle fibers each time you run. Protein plays a pivotal role in your body’s ability to repair itself and is absolutely necessary for adequate recovery.

If you do find yourself ill or injured, be sure to take time out and wait until you’re fully healed. This can be quite frustrating as it interferes with your plan but it’s an obstacle everyone faces at some stage. Throwing yourself back into the fray before you’re fully recovered is only going to prolong the infliction and make it worse. Be sure to follow the RISE guidelines to the letter…

For tips on overcoming the urge to smoke we have compiled a handy list of tips which you can refer to every time you get a craving.

Keep going! You are doing so well!

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