Q: I want to know what is the best way to train for a 10k that will be happening in 4 weeks. - A.L., 10/24/04

A: Unfortunately, there ain't no "drive up window" for adequate race preparation.

While it is impossible to answer your question without knowing where you are starting from, assuming that you are starting with little if any training, the short answer is this: Four weeks is not enough time.

If you attempted a 10k race already since you sent your original email, you have undoubtedly figured this out already.

My suggestion to you would be to buy a good running book reference, such as the 1st Edition of Jeff Galloway's "Book On Running" which has several 10k preparation plans depending on your time goal. This will give you an idea of where your relative running fitness level should be at within 4 weeks of a race. What I mean is find a weekly workout plan that fits the time goal you want to achieve and count backwards by 5 weeks. Look closely at what the specific workouts for that particular plan call for 5 weeks before the race. If the workout for that week gives you pause, then maybe you should bag the idea or buy a walker's number instead...there's always another 10k out there somewhere that you can shoot for with a more realistic time frame to adequately prepare yourself.

Good luck.

The Rage

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10kTruth.com is a place for runners who have the attitude to train harder and smarter, who want to race faster and stronger, to better their race times and lower the chance of injury. The Rage and Manciata answer running and training questions with their own unique insight and spew. You'll also find running advice and inspirational quotes by sports legends and others who epitomize the spirit of 10k Truth.