I'm a relatively beginner, male runner who has an 8 mile competitive fun run in 11 days. I've been on a few ~4km runs over the last couple of week, with my last run of 4.2km taking 20 minutes dead (but having to walk a couple of times during, for ~10 seconds). I'm relatively fit and athletic but have only recently started running.
Does anyone have any tips for training up to this 8 mile distance in 11 days? I'm aiming for about 1 hour 20 mins - is this a realistic aim?
You haven't done anything like enough running to really take this seriously and the last 11 days is way too late to cram in extra training - you will only arrive at the start line tired.
4.2k is roughly 2.6 miles and you did it in 20 mins which is less than 8 min miles. Your problem is going to be lasting the 8 miles although it depends how fit and athletic you are - I ran a HM at 15 with no training at all for a year in 1:43 but wasn't much fun or very competitive.
So might be a good idea to apply a run/walk strategy from the start - maybe run for 6 mins (that should get you away from crowds at start) walk for 2 mins and if you cover 0.8 miles in each 8 mins you will achieve your target time. Perhaps in the 11 days left you could do a couple of 5 mile runs and practice this strategy to see how it works out for you.
Hope it encourages you to keep up your running and take it a bit more seriously in future - everyone has to begin somewhere.
I think your only aim should be to get round.
I agree with SFF above;
Just remember that anyone with reasonable fitness can walk 8 miles. It is not the distance, it is the pace you choose to set that will cause you problems. If you are like me then you will get carried away at the start and then suffer at the end. So take the start easy and aim to set an even pace.
If at the end you are feeling frustrated because if you started quicker you would have done a better time then you have got it about right! Focus this frustration on your next challenge!
There is a 10% rule, which is do not increase your mileage week on week by more than 10% otherwise you are likely to injure yourself. So do not do too much in the next 11 days.
There's also a rule that says you can't gain or lose fitness in the space of 11 days so there's pretty much nothing you can do other than turn up and see what happens.
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