The 10,000 meters is a distance that combines speed and endurance and is ideal for assessing one’s training level and measuring progress over time.
The 10,000-meter training/test includes a light warm-up followed by the 10-kilometer run at 95 percent of maximum effort. The goal is to run at a fast pace but still maintain a small energy reserve.
The goal is not to have an official competition, but to evaluate one’s performance without overexerting oneself.
Don’t worry, I’m not here talking about zombies or dying or anything like that, and may an asteroid hit me if you ever hear me talk about it seriously. In fact, I think the dying 10K has taken some sense out of this distance, especially for beginners.
The beauty of the 10,000 meters is that it marvelously combines your speed and endurance. And, together, speed resistance. So for that very reason, they are a good test to do quite frequently (once every 5/6 weeks).
Quality work, motivation and testing
It is a fact that-very frequently-the urge to do the hardest workouts is analogous to going to the dentist; we are aware that it is good for us but we would gladly do without.
Different discussion, however, for the test sessions. Unofficial microgames against ourselves in which we measure ourselves, try to figure out where we stand, gather the fruit of our training. I, for my part, am always a little tense and excited when I have a test session: like when I had a class assignment but, this time, without the anxiety about the good grade.
Obviously, evaluations and measurements should be made solely and exclusively on the basis of your previous times so there are no exact parameters to be met.
How is this training/test conducted?
It’s as easy as that: just do a light warm-up (like before a race) and then run 10 km at 95 percent of maximum effort.
To be clear, the feeling is one of going hard but “having a little more.” The heart rate monitor will help you a lot in this but, even more, it will help you with knowing yourself and “feeling” your run.
For the sake of convenience and accurate benchmarks, the ideal would be to run the 10,000 on an athletic track or – in its absence – on a stretch of fast road, thus flat, without crosswalks, without people to discard, to put it in one word: a bicycle path.
Why 95% of the effort?
Because it is a training session and not an official competition, so we want to avoid that typical post-competition feeling of fatigue-this way we can fit this work within the week without affecting the workload too much.
That 5 percent difference is critical. Let me give you an example: let’s assume that in the race you do the 10K in 50′; taking off 5% means raising the time by 2’30”, thus finishing in 52’30”. If you have some experience, you realize for yourself what an abysmal difference there is between these two times.
That’s why I like to call them “10K quiet.” ;)