Need Help with 3k Run

by Victoria
(Melbourne, Victoria, Australia)

How can I run 3k in less than ten minutes? I just can't do it! It takes me 11 to 12 at least!

Please tell me any strategies you know for stamina and racing because I have a race in six days!

Answer by Dominique:
Hi Victoria,

Thanks for your question about your 3k run. Improving your running times from 11-12 minutes to 10 minutes can take a lot of time. Weeks if you are lucky and relatively untrained. Often months. For some, it could take years. In other words, way more than six days.

I'll still provide you with some guidance on how to get there and what to do in your race:

1. Building up your stamina
2. Speed work for a 3k race
3. 3k race strategy

Building up Your Stamina

need help with 3k run

Stamina can be built up by doing easy runs. Check out my page about easy running. A lot of your training should be at easy pace. Ideally your easy runs take you well beyond the 3km mark. That will make you stronger and stronger and build your engine.

Also check out the Increasing Mileage Safely page to learn more about how to increase your mileage without getting injuries.

Speed Work for a 3k Race

An important ingredient for a fast 3k run, like a 3k in under 10 minutes, is to train using quality workouts. This is faster running, such as intervals, fartleks or tempo runs.

What is particularly helpful is to practice intervals at goal pace as well. This gets you used to running the right pace and helps to avoid you going out way too fast. A goal pace workout for a fast 3k run could be something like 15 x 200m at goal pace. If that is an impossible workout, doing it for 3k uninterrupted is going to be a problem... So it serves as a bit of a reality check as well.

3k Race Strategy

need help with 3k run
Let's now talk race tactics, which is probably most useful for your race that is only six days away. What is critically important in these middle distance runs is that you run fast, but not so fast that you burn out after 2k. If you can, try to stop yourself from going all-out from the start. Try to run your first 1k as fast as the last 1k. Try to run at an even pace.

This is hard and comes with practice. But if you normally go all-out, then you would normally run your first 1k fast, your 2nd 1k okay and then run your last 1k a lot slower.

Trying to run as evenly as possible with giving it a real kick in the final 1k is likely to help make you quite a bit faster.

You would not be able to shave off 1-2 minutes, but you would possibly be able to save 10-30 seconds... which is a very good improvement on a relatively short distance.

Also check out this related question, which I have answered previously. 3k and 3200m are very close together, so you can use the same race strategy as what I have described here --> 3200m Race Strategy.

Whatever happens I hope you'll have some fun on race day. And all the best with the training in the weeks and months afterwards which should help you improve your 3k time more and more.

Best of luck.
Kind regards,

Join in and write your own page! It's easy to do. How? Simply click here to return to 2 Mile Running Questions.

Like this page:

Share this page:

Like this site:

[?] Subscribe To This Site

follow us in feedly
Add to My Yahoo!


  • Beginner Running Tips

    Are you a beginning runner? Then this is your best starting point. Many tips and running programs on offer, dedicated to you.

  • Running for Weight Loss

    Aiming to lose a few pounds? Get into the Running for Weight Loss section for tips and advice.

  • Running Training

    The Running Training section of the site has got the most articles. It is constantly getting updated with new tips and information. A must-visit if you are serious about improving your running performance.

  • 5k Running Tips

    The 5k is a great distance to run and train for. The great thing is that you can do it quite often and see big improvements.

  • 10k Running Tips

    The 10k is a real challenge. You need to run fast for an uncomfortably long time! Check out this section if you are strong of mind and legs!

  • Marathon Running Tips

    The marathon is a massive challenge. Proper training is so important! Make sure to check out this section if you have got your mind set on the marathon!

What's New?

  1. Guide on How to Treat Black Toenail | Best Running Tips

    Discover effective and easy ways to treat black toenail. Understand causes, symptoms, prevention methods. Visit now to learn more.

    Read more

  2. Pain in Heel When Running - Common Causes, Treatment and Prevention Strategies

    Have you got some pain in your heel when running? Check out this page to learn about common causes, what to do about your heel pain and when to visit the doctor.

    Read more

  3. Common Running Injuries: Causes and Treatments

    running tips 07
    In this section of Best Running Tips I will tell you about the most common running injuries. Learn about them so you know how to prevent them !

    Read more

  4. Foot and Ankle Strengthening Exercises

    This short article provides a list of foot and ankle strengthening exercises that can improve your foot stability and prevent heel pain when running.

    Read more

  5. First Marathon for Older Runner

    I am 68 years old. I have been a runner for 33 years doing mostly 5 and 10K race with one half marathon. I usually run a 5K in 25-27 minutes and the

    Read more