10K Beginner Training Goals
- Be able to walk a 10K walk (6.2 miles) in two hours or less
- Improve walking posture and form
- Finish a 10K walk feeling energized rather than exhausted
10K Beginner PrerequisitesThis schedule is for beginners who are normally active without significant health complaints but who may not regularly engage in fitness walking.
Should you seek medical advice before starting?
The Beginner 10K Walk Training Schedule
- Our training method is to increase the time you spend walking each week before working on speed.
- The within-week walks will provide the minimum recommended moderate aerobic exercise time each week just to maintain health. You may wish to also do strength workouts on alternate days, which is recommended for health.
- One day a week is a longer mileage-building day which will help you develop endurance and toughen your feet to prevent blisters.
- If you find any week to be difficult, repeat that week rather than adding more time, until you are able to progress comfortably.
- Time: Start with a daily 15 minute walk at an easy pace. Weekly total goal: 60 - 75 minutes.
- Walk five days the first week. We want to build a habit, so consistency is important. Spread out your rest days, such as making day 3 a rest day and day 6 a rest day.
- Shin Splints: a common problem for beginners is feeling the pain of shin splints during their first week or two of walking training. How to Prevent and Treat Shin Splints
- Time: Add 5 minutes a day so you are walking 20 minutes, 4 days a week.
- The fifth walking day is a mileage-building day with a walk of 30 minutes.
- Walking Form: Use your walks this week to concentrate on developing good walking posture and technique. This can greatly improve your ease of walking and improve your speed.
Walking Form Technique for Beginners
- Time: Add 5 minutes a day so you are walking 25 minutes, four days a week.
- Mileage-Building Day: On your fifth walking day, walk for 45 minutes.
- Walk at a moderate, determined pace
- may be breathing noticeably
- able to carry on a full conversation while walking
- not out of breath
- Now that you have been walking regularly for a couple of weeks, consider whether you need walking shoes that will allow your best performance. You should also switch to socks made of sweat-wicking fabric to help prevent blisters.
How to Choose Walking Shoes
Before You Buy Walking Socks
- Time: Add 5 minutes a day to walk 30 minutes, 4 days a week, at a moderate pace. We will keep most of your within-week walks at this distance and speed.
- Mileage-Building Day: Walk for 60 minutes at an moderate/easy pace.
- Drinking right: Now that you are walking for more than 30 minutes, you should locate a source of water so you can have a drink each mile. If there are no handy drinking fountains, you may want to carry water with you. It is best to carry it in a fanny pack with a water holster, rather than carrying a bottle in your hand, as that can lead to muscle strain and poor walking form.
- Blister prevention: Now that you are walking longer and faster, you may experience a hot spot or blister. Learn how to prevent and treat blisters.
- Time: Walk 30 minutes a day four days a week.
- Mileage-Building Day: Walk 90 minutes at an easy pace.
- Building speed: During each of your shorter walks, concentrate on improving your walking form to add speed. If you have not been using arm motion, this can be the key to increasing speed. Fast Walking Technique
- Time: Walk 30 minutes a day four days a week, paying attention to form and speed techniques.
- Mileage-Building Day: Your long walk this week should be 10 kilometers (6.2 miles) at a moderate pace. If you are already a fast walker, you may have achieved that with the 90 minute walk. This week, measure a route that is 10 kilometers and walk a moderate pace.
- At this point, you could complete your 10K walk. But if you have the time to build your aerobic fitness and speed, add interval workouts to your shorter within-week walks while keeping your long walk at an easier pace.
- Interval Workouts: The Economy Walk builds speed, do it for one workout each week. The Anaerobic Threshold Walk builds aerobic fitness, do it for one workout each week. When adding these workouts, you may reduce your workout week to one day of an Economy walk, a rest day, one day of the Threshold Walk, a rest day or two, and then the Long Walk one day a week.
- Mileage-Building Day: Walk 120 minutes at a moderate pace. This may mean that you walk more than 10 kilometers, which will help your endurance during the 10K walk.
- If you still have time before your 10K walk, you can turn your long walk of the week into a simulated race every-other week. Aim to walk it at 80% of the speed that you hope to walk the 10K, rather than keeping it to an easy pace.
- You can also increase the distance of your long walk on the week where you are keeping the pace easy. Add 15 minutes to it every-other week. The increased distance and time will help build your stamina and endurance. Before you know it, you will be seeking out half marathons and dreaming of the marathon!