Running from 0 to 10k by Susan Sutherland


Everyone has been told – you should think about running, its cheap, keeps you fit and is easy! But sometimes its hard to put the method into practice. No one really talks about how you do it, just that you should and the benefits. Don’t first think of the 10k focus on running.

Its true though, it is easy because all you really need is a road and a pair of trainers – the only problem is determination though might not come so easily if you haven’t done it before.

Here are some tips to help think about how to get going, how to help make sure you enjoy it and above all – maybe help make this more of a hobby!


Go at your own speed regardless of what you want to achieve, or who you are running with. If you feel like you are pushing yourself like you would during a 100m sprint, you aren’t going to be able to sustain it – focus on keeping going and never give up. When I started running, my brother was faster and I always had it in mind that was the pace I needed to hit to be ‘a good runner’. It wasn’t, and I should have focused on my own ability before comparing to his – I would have got better faster without being so frustrated!



Its hard to remember the positives when you are doing something unknown, and you aren’t sure if you actually like yet! Stay positive – you are becoming more active and there is good reason you have decided to do this. Keep that in mind, you have got this and you will get stronger.

Listen to your body

This is something we don’t always do in sport, endorphins or desire have the tendency to get the better of us and make us push to hard, or sometimes we just can’t be bothered and would much prefer to sit on the sofa with ice cream! Listen to your body, there have been many times I haven’t felt like running but have done it anyway and guess what? I felt worse afterwards! Listen to your body, its your running tool and you have to treat it well to get the best out of it. This also means you listen to your body when it comes to food as well, your body needs good foods and you need energy to run otherwise you will end up fatiguing and struggling to get to the end.

Don’t over think or over analyse

Its easy to over think your run before you go, and even whilst running making you self conscious and wanting to stop. Don’t. Take your mind elsewhere, you are stronger and more able than you think you are, test your boundaries and you might surprise yourself. There have been many times I have felt self conscious about my running style, crossing the street and what people think of it but the thing you need to remember is… you are running, you will be gone in a second! Any embarrassment you may have, you are going to quickly for anyone to even notice


As much as don’t over think, do plan! Think about your route and also your clothing. Have a look online to see if anyone has done a route near you that’s a distance you think is manageable, if you are going after work and its dark – think about lighting and if the roads are likely to be quiet or busy. I don’t like being in the dark on my own so always make sure I stick to main roads as best I can at night times. Think about your clothing as well – you always want to be slightly cold as you start running as you will warm up. If its windy or wet, think about that as well, whenever I know theres possibility of rain my phone goes in a sandwich bag to keep it dry.

Running Tips

Enjoy it

There is nothing worse than forcing yourself to do something that you don’t want to do! If you have a strong hate for it on your first go, think about why. Are you finding the intensity to difficult? Is the route not enjoyable? Are your shoes uncomfortable? It took me a long time to figure out how to enjoy running, once I realised it helped me process what was happening in my life, and gave me time to think things through I started using the time more to keep sanity rather than for keep fit! I do prefer quiet roads though for peace and enjoyment away from cars, but I struggle with feeling safe on these roads sometimes so my enjoyment level hits fear quickly!! Depending on time of day, depends on what route I plan to use.

Find a love for hills

This is a tricky one, I have always had a love hate relationship with hills but they do benefit you if you train on them. Honest. Regardless if you start off walking up them to then get into a jog –that’s fine. You are going in the right direction and this is progress. Next time try and hit the hill harder, and eventually you will find you are at the top of it without knowing you ran up it.

Focus on Level 6

When running ask yourself on a scale of 1 – 10 where am I? If you are feeling like you are working at around a level 5 or 6, this is perfect. Anything below this you aren’t working hard enough, anything above this you wont be able to sustain for very long and this will have a negative impact on your training session.

Clear your head

Running is good therapy and its free, thinking things through rather than focusing on how far you have done and how much is still to come is a much better use of your time. I tend to find it calms me and I am a much happier person once I have been a run!

Strong not Skinny

The general focus is on losing weight and getting weight off when it comes to running, but try think about how you are getting stronger rather than skinnier. If you are skinny, you look good in clothes but not naked. If you are fit and strong you have a cracking beach body! You are getting stronger, more powerful and fitter every step you take. Be a stronger version of you.

Let us know how your running 10K went using the comments below

The Stockton Cafe