How Quickly Can I Get to Sub 40 Minutes for a 10k Run?

I want to achieve sub 40 minutes for a 10k

I currently run

11 minutes for 2.4k
23 minutes for 5k
47 minutes for 10k

I only train three times per week

Two short runs (2 to 4 miles) during the week and a 5 to 6 mile at the weekend

I could run 4 times a week - or more over a short period e.g. 5 times a week during a 10 week period before a race.

I only race twice a year.

Any help much appreciated.


10k running programAnswer by Dominique:

Thanks for your question and thanks for providing ample information to play with.

It is of course hard for me to tell you how long it would take to get to sub-40. It all depends on your abilities and persistence.

But your basics are there, you now probably need to focus some efforts to really find out what you are capable of.

The first thing I checked was whether your race times for the 2.4k, 5k and 10k were well aligned using the race conversion calculator.

People with a poor base often do well on shorter distances, but do disproportionaly worse on longer distances.

Your times however seem pretty well aligned, e.g. your 23 minute 5k suggest a 10k result of 47 mins and 57 secs. You run a 47 minute 10k so you are able to maintain your form for longer distances.
That's great.

However, going the other way around....
for a goal time of 40 minutes on a 10k run, you would have to do a 19.11 minutes 5k, or a 8.48 minutes 2.4k.

So, in order to be able to run those types of times you need to get faster. A few important building blocks in getting faster:

1) Build up your mileage. If possible, add a day of running to your schedule and slowly increase your long run to 9-10 miles over time. Also see my page about increasing mileage.

Also Make Sure to Check Out These Pages

2) Start doing speedwork and tempo runs. More on that on the interval pace page and the tempo workouts page.

3) Combine the two tips above in a sound running program.

You have established a good running routine. Going sub-40 is a worthy goal but will require a focused effort.

Increase your mileage, start doing speedwork and apply the science of a sound running program and I am convinced that you will be able to shave off minutes of your current times.

Whether you will get to sub-40 is the question, but I at least hope you will have fun while doing it and will give it your best shot!

Best of luck.

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