You have a good running base - no point in going backwards. My regular runs tend to be similar to yourself in length. I don't tend to follow a plan when training for a half marathon, but I do start paying more attention to the quality of the runs, and make sure that I get a good interval session in every week, and include some tempo runs. On my long runs, I start trying to start slower, then up the intensity in the second half of the run rather than run a steady pace throughout. And I throw in some regular hill training. But I've just made that up myself, not based on any particular theory or expertise. I don't know if there is a more evidence based approach....
My 6 year old comes along with me sometimes to parkrun - he loves it. The atmosphere helps motivate him, and knowing he can beat some of the grown-ups (don't know where he gets his competitiveness from ). He loves the idea that he can get a t-shirt if he does enough of them. I only let him do it occasionally though as I appreciate that his bones aren't fully developed yet - 5k every week would be too much. It helps that our local parkrun is mainly on trails, so a bit softer on his joints than road would be. We got him a lanyard so he can carry his own barcode, and sometimes he will choose to take some water round too. We just go at his pace, and he chooses whether he runs or walks. He had done shorter fun runs before though and regularly watches us at races or helps marshall, so that maybe helped him know what he was in for. And he loves waiting for the result to come in to see if he has a PB or not! It might be worth going to the parkrun anyway, then letting them decide once they are there?
If its hurting, its trying to tell you something! Is there a physio locally you can get quick access to? I had a knee injury a couple of months before my first marathon in October last year, and had a fab physio who gave me some rehab exercises to do, but also helped me put together a cross training plan that would help me continue to develop my fitness and train whilst I rested the joint. And I still did better than I was expecting in the marathon. Better to take time to fix it now.
In the meantime, might be worth not doing the long run tomorrow and give the tendon a rest. Maybe cross train?
Hi Stuart, well done on entering your first 10k. Don't do anything too different from your normal running routine, and definitely don't try anything new on race day! You definitely don't want to try something on the day because someone says its best on here, only to find it makes you sick or sends you running for the loo mid race! Its quite a personal thing, before a 10k at 11am, I would normally have a bowl of porridge when I get up then a banana about 10am. I don't tend to drink too much in the morning, as I would then end up spending most of the pre-race morning in the loo queue! My indicator is usually how hydrated I am (ie is my urine straw coloured) and I usually focus more on staying hydrated the day before. But again, everyone is different. Do you know if there is water available on the route? If so, how much (cup or bottle)? That might help you judge.
In terms of rest days, I would judge it by my aim. For example, for our clubs championship, I had a day off running the day before. However, if I was doing it as part of training for another event, I may still run before. You won't lose any fitness by taking a few days off, so go with what feels right and fits in with your fitness.
Sorry I don't have any definitive answers. But different things work for different people and part of running in a race is finding out what works best for you. Some times you'll get it right, other times you won't but you'll learn from it. Good luck!
As some others have said, go with what suits you. I struggled to find a gel that suited me, that was an okay consistency and an okay taste. I now use Clif Shot Blocks as an alternative - works the same way but are little blocks of jelly that I can chew instead. There are other products out there that work in the same way, you just need to experiment and find out what works best for you. Likewise, experiment with how often you need to take them - its just another part of your training. Good luck