10K Time Saver Workouts

By Rick Morris

Efficient 10K training typically involves workouts that challenge your lactate threshold, running specific strength, mental strength and to a more limited extent, your top running speed. While those types of training runs are best accomplished when you aren’t limited on time, you can still get in a quality 10K session when time is short. Here are some 10K time saver workouts that you can use when time becomes an issue. Perform a warm up before you begin these workouts.

Half a Loaf 10K Run

You’ve heard the saying “half a loaf is better than none”. That is very accurate when it comes to time saver workouts. Here is a true half a loaf 10K workout that is not only time efficient but highly effective. This is also a very simple workout. After a brief warm up, simply head out for 5 kilometers at 10K pace. This is a very good workout for improving your race pace stamina as well as your lactate threshold.

20 Minute Progressive Run

In just 20 minutes you can hit nearly every training pace you need to improve your 10K efficiency. Do some quick drills and strides for a warm up and then hit the trail or road for a 20 minute progressive run. Do the first 5 minutes at an easy pace, the second 5 minutes at a moderate or around marathon pace. Then speed up to 10K pace for 5 minutes and finish this workout with 5 minutes at 5K pace.

10K Time Saver Compound Sets

So you only have 15 minutes for a workout. No problem. This one is short but intense. Warm up with 3 minutes of easy jogging. Then run 1 minute as fast as you can, 2 minutes at 5K pace and 2 minutes at 10K pace with no recovery between the runs. Rest for 2 minutes and then run 2 minutes at 10K pace followed by 2 minutes at 5K pace and finish with 1 minute as fast as possible. Again, take no rest between the segments. Cool down with your walk to the shower.

10K Hill Blaster

When you have limited time you really need to take advantage of each minute of your workout. That means running most , if not all, of your training run with a very hard effort. Hill training is a great way to do that. Here is a short 15 minute 10K time saver run that will improve your running specific strength, running efficiency and race pace stamina. Find a steep hill that will take you about 5 minutes to climb. If you don’t have such a hill in your area you can do this one on a treadmill at between 8 and 10 percent incline. Warm up with 3 minutes of easy jogging and then hit the hill or your treadmill for 5 minutes of climbing at 10K pace. Run at 10K pace, not 10K intensity. The incline will make it feel harder than 10K pace. Run back down the hill at 10K pace and then cool down with 2 minutes of easy jogging.