Fit for Life – Phase 3

Phase 3 of an octant is a long-term commitment and should take at least 30 hours, can include gaining a qualification or teaching something to others. My Phase 3 is something I spent ten months training for…

Phase 3: Train for and complete a 10k run

With all the training I had done with ‘Couch 2 5k’ I was looking for a new challenge to keep my motivation for running. I thought it would be a good aim to look at doubling the distance I could run.

I took up my training for the 10k run in September 2014, with an aim to run Race for Life in July 2015. This gave me plenty of time to train for my goal. I signed up for the race in January 2015 and was sent information on how to fundraise, what to expect on the day and my race number. At this point I set up a training programme, a mixture of strength and stretch workouts and gradually increasing distances. Over the winter it was difficult to keep up motivation for going out in the dark to exercise so I started including weight training indoors into the schedule to improve the strength of my legs.

As the mornings became lighter I started a new training programme using my Garmin Forerunner 10 watch to time and check the distance of my running. My aim was to run 5k three times a week, with a longer run on a Sunday to build up to my 10k target.

Before the race I only completed 10k on one occasion, on Sunday 28th June. I completed this in 1 hour and 9 minutes. This was confidence building for the day as I knew I could complete it.

On the day of the 10k run I attended Chelmsford Hylands Park for the start at 1100am. Starting the race was quite daunting as I didn’t know what to expect. I’d only ever run on pavement and hadn’t run on grass before. I found the first 5k quite easy, and I seemed to be ahead of time. The race became difficult between 7km – 9km and I struggled with the hills around this section of the course. However, when I reached the sign for 500m left to go I felt a boost of energy and ran at a steady pace to the finish line.


I completed the race in 1 hour, 1 minute and 29 seconds. I was very happy to finish in a time so close to the hour, and was surprised I must’ve held a very steady pace.

Through sponsorship money I raised £195 for Cancer Research UK. I covered at least 30 hours in my training for this event, running or working out at least an hour a week over ten months.


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