Tips for Increasing Your Distance From 10km to a Half Marathon

Congratulations to everyone who completed the Bristol Run Series 10k. To help you to step up to the 15k and Half Marathon, Personal Trainer, Sian from SC-fitness has some helpful tips below.

Stepping up your distance

So, you’ve worked up to running 10km and you’ve decided you’d like to go further. Perhaps you’ve signed up for a Half Marathon event and you’re feeling excited…but the jump from 10km to 21km feels a bit daunting. That’s completely understandable! However, I bet you thought that running 10km seemed a long way off when you first ran 5km, right? Yet you did it! That’s why I want to reassure you that now you’ve reached 10km, you can absolutely get to a Half Marathon. There is simply more training you need to do beforehand and that’s what I’m here to help with.

Here are some tips for you to focus on in the run up to your event to get you over that finish line not only having completed the distance, but having enjoyed it too!

Tip 1: Set yourself a realistic timeframe to train for your event

The main thing that gives you confidence when running long distances is that you know you can do it. This requires preparation and enough time to work up to the distance in question. To expect your body to go from running a distance such as 10km to a Half Marathon takes time and patience, as well as a sensible, progressive training plan. You really don’t want to rush into things. My advice is to build up your running gradually so that your lungs and your legs increase in fitness and stamina and are able to cope with the longer distances.

If you’re already comfortable running 10k, I would suggest giving yourself about 6-8 weeks to work up to your Half Marathon. If you’re new to running, you may want to increase this time. Essentially the more preparation time you have, the more gradual your training can be and you can work up in smaller distances. Make sure you do what’s right for you.

Photo Credit: JennyHill

Tip 2: Focus on increasing your weekly mileage

Running further than 10km doesn’t mean that you have to cover more than 10km every time you run. Your focus needs to be on increasing how far you run over the week as a whole. This will include more than one run (I would advise planning for at least 3 per week) and they should be of varying distances. You may also want to include some tempo or interval runs where you can work on your speed and recovery. One of your weekly runs should be a ‘long run’ where you are working up to your Half Marathon distance and depending on the time you have available to prepare, I suggest you increase your long run by 1-2km each week. Keep the progressions manageable and consistent so that your body is able to keep up with the increase in duration and intensity.

Tip 3: Don’t forget about recovery and injury-prevention

Running is a brilliant sport and I love it for both the physical and mental health benefits. However there is no denying that it is also a high-impact activity and injuries can be common. That’s why I advise that around your running sessions you prioritise some strength training and mobility workouts. These don’t have to be long or complicated, they simply need to be part of your routine too. Our muscles and joints go through a lot when running, so having strong muscles which aren’t constantly tight and fatigued is important.

Make sure to incorporate some exercises which work your lower body muscles including your glutes, hamstrings, quads and calves. Compound exercises such as squats and deadlifts are great, as well as single leg movements such as lunges and step ups. Yoga classes are really good for recovery and they can help you learn some useful movements which you can repeat at home around your running program.

Photo Credit: Jonathan Borba

You can do it!

Hopefully, you’re feeling more confident that you can now increase your distance from 10km in an achievable and enjoyable way. Running is a form of movement that is challenging and forces us to push ourselves, yet it is so rewarding too. Nothing feels better than running a race which you know you’ve trained well for and crossing that finish line with a huge sense of relief and achievement. Now go and enjoy your training – you’ve got this!

The Big Sport, Exercise and Health Winter Quiz

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You will need: 

– A quiz master!
– A pen and paper for each participant


The Ultimate Gift List for Fitness Fanatics

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For the tech-obsessed 

If you are looking for an extra-special Christmas present this year, there’s more exciting fitness-tech on the market then ever before! A fitness tracker can be a great all-rounder and there is one suitable for most budgets. Even the low-cost options can sync with your phone to track specific goals, monitor heart rate, activity levels and even sleep.

We like: Fitbit Charge 4 fitness tracker

A stock image of a man with an electronic tablet on his lap


5 Tips for Motivation During Winter

It may be getting colder and darker, but moving for your physical and mental wellbeing is just as important as other times of the year – if not even more important! Today we are sharing some of our top tips for staying motivated, safe and well during the winter months.

We will also be giving you a sneak preview of some of the things we’ll be doing to stay active over at University of Bristol Sport.

 1) Exercise with friends

Getting out and moving may seem less appealing at the moment, but meeting a friend will make sure you stick to your plans and boost motivation for your workout too. It’s a great excuse to temporarily escape those Christmas family commitments and boost endorphins in the process.

Making plans with others can also make you more adventurous and can give you the confidence to try new things and push yourself further.

Winter bucket-list: Why not suggest a wintery walk or festive fitness class to try with a friend.


An Interview with ManSquared

This week we caught up with the team behind ManSquared, a project developing mental fitness tools to help facilitate open and vulnerable conversations between men.

A group photo of Finn, Anna, Rachel and Jamie sat on a wall
Left to right: Finn Higgins, Anna Parker, Rachel Lee and Jamie Thomson

Hello! Why don’t you introduce yourself?

We’re a group of four University of Bristol students all studying innovation, passionate about male mental fitness having seen the impact it has had on ourselves, our friends, families and communities.
Anna is a wild swimmer, keen rugby player and studies psychology.
Finn is a history student who loves football and the outdoors.
Jamie can’t get enough of his electronic music and loves spending time on his bike.
Rachel is captain of the Bristol Jets Pom team and enjoys being creative in her free time.


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Did you know that getting involved with sport and physical activity at university will give you valuable work place skills?

It may sound far-fetched but extra-curricular activities will show employers that you have more strings to your bow and will give you plenty to talk about in those all-important interviews.

You can demonstrate your skill set  


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In this blog post we’ll be looking at some of the reasons joining a sports club can enhance your university experience!


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1. It’s a great way to make connections


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It’s that time again where we begin to welcome new and returning back to Bristol! In this post, we are sharing some Bristol-based activities that we think deserve a spot on your active bucket list. If you do try any of our suggestions, let us know, we’d love to see your paddle boarding pictures or your new favorite trail.