1000m Repeats at 5K/10K Pace

Workout Type:  Running   

This is a fundamental workout for everything from 800m to marathon training. There are some subtle, but important variations of this workout:

  1. 1000m repeats at current 10K pace. This is an excellent strength workout. Keep the pace slow enough so that you can do 8-10 repetitions with just a 200m jogging recovery (approximately 1 min) in between.
  2. 1000m repeats at current (not aspirational) 5K pace. This is a hard workout. We typically take 200m jogging recovery (approximately 1 minute) in between intervals. 4x1000m is a good starting point. You can progress to 6x1000m, but anything more than that will require a lot of recovery.
  3. 800m repeats at aspirational 5K pace. If you are trying to get some practice running faster than current 5K pace then stick to 800m repeats with 200m (or even 400m) recovery. 4x800m is a good stimulus, but you can go up to 6x800m if fit and rested.

When to use this workout:

  1. For middle distance training (800m-3K), this is a great workout in the strength building phase ahead of the peak racing season (8-14 weeks ahead of peak competition). Start with the 10K pace version and progress toward the 5K pace version.
  2. For 5K/10K training, this can be used as specific race preparation closer to your race season. Run at your goal race pace (5K for 5K races and 10K for 10K races) or perhaps use the 800m variant to run a little faster than race pace.
  3. For Half Marathon/Marathon training, this workout can be very good in the early preparation phases of training using the 10K pace variation. You can add a couple of these workouts in the weeks preceding your goal race as you peak for the race (5K variation can be good but keep the reps to the low side).

Keep it interesting. There are lots of ways to make this workout more enjoyable (and easier to do from a mental perspective):

  1. Break up into sets. If you are doing a lot of repeats (especially for the 10K version), you can break it up into 2-3 sets with a little more recovery in between each set. For example, instead of doing 8x1000m with 200m recovery you could do 2 x (4x1000m w/ 200mR) with 400m or 800m jog in between sets. If you are doing the 5K version then 3 x (2x1000m w/ 200mR) with 800m jog in between would be a great way to get a lot of 5K work in without punishing yourself too much. 
  2. Mix with other interval types. 1000m repeats work very well when combined with shorter intervals. Blending short mile or 800m pace intervals into the workout will help you develop multiple energy systems in the same workout. An example of this is 4x200m @ mile pace, 4x1000m @ 10K pace, and 4x200m @ mile pace. There are tons of variations to try … don’t be afraid to experiment! 


Posted by: Brock

  • At DWest we will use 10k pace 1000m repeats multiple times in the training year. It’s a great marker workout to judge aerobic fitness (at the beginning or end of a phase) and to tell if athletes have accumulated enough aerobic fitness to handle the next phase of training. For the high schoolers we will often split the workout into more manageable sets with a 2-3 minute jog between sets.

    • Great points, thanks. Love the idea of using as a marker workout at beginning and end of a training phase. Do you typically do the same workout at faster pace or keep pace the same but add reps?

      Let’s update the workout to add variations that I break the reps into sets.

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