Train for your 10k race on the treadmill

Lloyd Anthony Lloyd Anthony Personal Trainer at Nuffield Health
Avoid the chilly weather and train indoors for your winter 10k run with this expert-led interval treadmill training programme.

In the winter, when it’s cold and wet outside, it can be easy to become demotivated in your fitness goals. One great way to ensure that you keep up your fitness at this time of year is to set yourself a goal. Entering a winter run could provide additional motivation, and training in the gym will help you avoid the cold.

This treadmill training session is designed to help you build endurance over time so that you can achieve a solid time in a 10k run.

Throughout the workout I’ll refer to the RPE (Rated Perceived Exertion) scale. This is a scale of one to ten, one being the lowest intensity, ten being your maximum effort. Using this RPE scale in each section of the workout will help you to work to your personal limits.

You should find that if you do this workout twice a week in conjunction with a continuous run you will have improved aerobic fitness and in a couple of months you’ll be ready for your 10k winter run.

The steps

Warm up

Begin with a 5 minute progressive warm up, build your speed from 2 RPE to 7 RPE.

Main Workout

  • 5 minutes at around a 6 RPE
  • 1 minute easy recovery
  • 4 minutes at around 7 RPE
  • 1 minute easy recovery
  • 3 minutes at around 8 RPE
  • 1 minute easy recovery
  • 2 minutes at around 8 RPE
  • 1 minute easy recovery
  • 2 minute at near maximum effort (9 RPE)
  • 1 minute easy recovery


Stretch for 5 minutes

Training tips

One of the most common reasons people fail to finish a 10k run is pushing themselves too hard at the start of the race, leaving their bodies too exhausted to continue to the end. Use tempo and trial runs to gain an understanding of the paces you can maintain. This should help you to focus on finding a comfortable starting pace that you can maintain throughout the run.

Another common issue preventing runners from finishing is injury. You can help yourself avoid injury by doing a mobility workout for the whole body for at least ten minutes a day.

Ensuring you get at least seven hours of sleep every night, drinking at least two litres of water on rest days and more on training days will also help you to stay and feel healthy in the lead in to the run.

Last updated Friday 14 December 2018

First published on Tuesday 29 March 2016