Whether you are new to running, or wanting to improve your time from last year’s race, or are at more of an intermediate standard, it’s helpful for motivation levels and for goal-setting to have a training plan to work from.

This plan below is a good guide to assist you to complete the annual YMCA North London Adult 10k Road Race and combines all the components required for fitness in running: endurance, strength, speed, coordination, flexibility, and rest and recovery.

Look out for the options for new runners/beginners to improvers/intermediates

8 weeks to go (last week of March)

Monday – Body conditioning/yoga/circuits OR REST
Tuesday – Steady run, 15 minutes for new runners/beginners, 30 mins for improvers/intermediates
Wednesday – REST
Thursday/Friday– Running Group – ‘Introduction &1 km efforts at pace ’ OR fast-paced run – 10 mins for new runners/beginners, 15 mins for improvers/intermediates

Saturday/Sunday – ‘Come Run with Me’ Group Training in Finsbury Park, OR Steady run – 20 minutes for new runners/beginners, 30 mins for improvers/intermediates

7 weeks to go (1st week of April)

Monday – Body conditioning/yoga/circuits OR REST
Tuesday – fast run, 10 mins for new runners/beginners, 15 mins for improvers/intermediate OR spinning

Wednesday – REST
Thursday/Friday – Running Group – ‘Introduction & run of 20 minutes max’ OR 20 mins continuous run for new runners/beginners, 30 mins for improvers/intermediates
Saturday/Sunday – ‘Come Run with Me’ Group Training in Finsbury Park, OR Steady run – 20 minutes for new runners/beginners, 30 mins for improvers/intermediate

6 weeks to go (2nd week of April)

Monday – Body conditioning/yoga/circuits OR REST
Tuesday – Steady run, 30 mins for new runners/beginners, 30 mins for improvers/intermediates OR spinning
Wednesday – REST
Thursday/Friday – Running Group – ‘Intervals session of short fast efforts’, OR fast run – include 15 minutes of fast running for beginners, 25 mins for improvers/ intermediates

Saturday – Body conditioning/yoga/swimming/cycling/walking/ 5k Parkrun – choose your local free timed run
Sunday – ‘Come Run with Me’ Group Training in Finsbury Park, or Steady Run – 30 minutes for new runners/beginners, 40 mins for improvers/intermediates

5 weeks to go (3rd week of April)

Monday – Body conditioning/yoga/circuits
Tuesday – Fast run- 15 mins for new runners/beginners, 20 mins for improvers/intermediates OR spinning
Wednesday – REST
Thursday/Friday – ‘Continuous run of 30 minutes max’, OR fast run – 20 minutes for beginners, 30 mins for improvers/intermediates

Saturday – Body conditioning/yoga/swimming/cycling/walking/5k Parkrun – choose your local free timed run
Sunday – ‘Come Run with Me’ Group Training in Finsbury Park, or Steady Run – 30 minutes for new runners/beginners, 40-50 mins for improvers/intermediates

4 weeks to go (4th week of April)

Monday – Body conditioning/yoga/circuits
Tuesday – Steady run – 30 mins for new runners/beginners, 40 mins for improvers/intermediates, OR spinning

Wednesday – REST
Thursday/Friday – Running Group – ‘Hill techniques and hills training’, OR hilly run – include 15 minutes of hills for beginners, 20 mins for improvers/intermediates
Saturday – Body conditioning/yoga/swimming/cycling/walking/ 5k Parkrun – choose your local free timed run
Sunday – ‘Come Run with Me’ Group Training in Finsbury Park, or Steady Run – 40 minutes for new runners/beginners, 50 mins for improvers/intermediates

3 weeks to go (1st week of May)

Monday – Body conditioning/yoga/circuits
Tuesday – Fast run – 20 mins for new runners/beginners, 25 mins for improvers/intermediates, OR spinning

Wednesday – REST
Thursday/Friday – Running Group – ‘Continuous run of 40 minutes max- 6-8k’, OR long run – 40 minutes for beginners, 40-50 mins for improvers/intermediates
Saturday – Body conditioning/yoga/swimming/cycling/walking/5k Parkrun – choose your local free timed run
Sunday – ‘Come Run with Me’ Group Training in Finsbury Park, or Steady Run – 40 minutes for new runners/beginners, 50-60 mins for improvers/intermediates

2 weeks to go (2nd week of May) TAPER

Monday – Body conditioning/yoga/circuits
Tuesday – Steady run – 40 mins for new runners/beginners, 50 mins for improvers/intermediates, OR spinning

Wednesday – REST
Thursday/Friday – Running Group – ‘Fun Relay Session, OR Fast run- 15 mins for new runners/beginners, 20 mins for improvers/intermediates

Saturday – Body conditioning/yoga/swimming/cycling/walking OR 5k Parkrun – choose your local free timed run
Sunday – ‘Come Run with Me’ Group Training in Finsbury Park, or Steady Run – 50 minutes for new runners/beginners, 60-70 mins for improvers/intermediates

1 week to go (2nd week of May) TAPER

Monday – Body conditioning/yoga/circuits
Tuesday – Fast run – 15 mins for new runners/beginners, 20 mins for improvers/intermediates

Wednesday – REST
Thursday/Friday – Running Group – ‘Recap and Continuous run of 30 minutes max’, OR steady run of 30 minutes

Saturday – Body conditioning/yoga/swimming/cycling/walking OR REST
Sunday – RACE DAY

For Beginners and Improvers – men and women – for anyone who will run a 10k in 55 minutes or longer

Come Run with Me in Finsbury Park (https://groups.runtogether.co.uk/FinsburyParkComeRunWithMeGroup)

Sessions for men and women take place on Sunday mornings, with a wide range of fitness levels catered for. Sessions vary each week, and are designed to improve aerobic endurance and running fitness generally.

Sessions during April and May will specifically focus on preparing for the 10k fun run.

Meet Finsbury Park Running Track 10am on Sundays for 60-75 minutes sessions around the park. Sessions rates: £8.50, then a range of monthly/bundle payment options are available. For information, see the FAQs

For confident male and female runners – for anyone who can run comfortably for about 50 minutes

London Heathside Running Club AC is a friendly club welcoming men and women of mixed abilities. Sessions take place at various venues in North London on different nights of the week, including road runs and summer sessions in Highgate woods and Hampstead Heath, or track sessions in Finsbury Park.

You can go and try out the club for free for 2 sessions before being asked to join at an annual membership fee of £65 pa, with concessions for unwaged. For information go to londonheathside.org.uk. Find out more about venues and sessions here

Session dates and times: Every Thursday from 29th March at 7.30pm for 8 weeks. Sessions last between 1 hour and 1 hour 30 minutes.When coming for your 1st 2018 session, please arrive at 7.15pm for registration.

Meeting place: We meet at the YMCA Fitness Centre, 184 Tottenham Lane, N8 8SG. This is the YMCA site closest to Crouch End Broadway, around the corner from the YMCA hostel. The entrance to the Fitness Centre is on Elmfield Avenue. For a map, click here

Session fees: £5 per person per session for YMCA members and non-members, £2 of which will be donated to YMCA North London’s work with vulnerable young homeless people – see https://www.ymcanorthlondon.org.uk/fundraising-and-how-to-get-sponsorship/.

Free to London Heathside members.

Run group members must be aged 16 or over by race day – 20th May 2018.

Contact for the sessions: You can just turn up, but it would be great if you could let Alison Harrow @ London Heathside know you are coming on or 07720 849 650.

Centre facilities: Trainees can make free use of the showers, toilets, and changing facilities. There are lockers to store belongings – please bring your own padlock, or you can buy one from reception for £3. There is on-road parking in the nearby streets. Bicycles can be locked outside the Fitness Centre entrance.

Running is a truly economic sport: the only item of clothing you need to spend any money on is a good pair of running shoes (not cross-trainers, or tennis shoes). If in doubt about any of your kit, ask for one-to-one advice from the run leaders, and you can also get excellent advice from any branch of Runners Need, Run and Become, Bike and Run, and Sweatshop.

Eating the right food at the right time will really assist your training. As a guide, carbohydrates like pasta, rice and potatoes allow for a slow release of energy, andsugars give a ‘quick hit’. If you are unsure, ask for one-to-one advice from the run leaders.

When training in the evening, eat a good lunch with plenty of carbs, and eat this at least 3 hours before you start training. Eat some fruit, yoghurt or flapjack snack no less than 1 hour before training, especially if you are hungry as this will boost your blood sugar levels for that ‘quick hit’.

When training in the morning, eat a meal the night before high in carbs, and a light/toast/muesli for breakfast at least 1 hour before training.