By Michelle Portalatin
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Aiming for a new personal record on your next 10K? This comprehensive four-week program can get you there. Training at high and specific intensities guarantees to increase your running strength, power, and speed. Before getting started, you will need a heart rate monitor to ensure that you are training at appropriate intensities. Your heart rate training zones are percentages of your maximum heart rate. To calculate your maximum heart rate, subtract your age from 220. A heart rate monitor will calculate your zones automatically.

Heart Rate Zones

Zone 1: Easy, aerobic, 60 to 70% max heart rate, recovery

Zone 2: Moderate, aerobic, 70 to 80% max heart rate

Zone 3: Moderately hard, lactate threshold, 80 to 85% max heart rate

Zone 4: Hard, anaerobic threshold, 85 to 90% max heart rate

The Workouts

Tempo: Increases lactate threshold, or the intensity at which one can run before lactic acid builds up in the muscles to the point it causes fatigue and slows down performance. Zone 3

Interval: Increases anaerobic threshold, or the intensity at which your body goes from aerobic (oxygen used to produce energy) to anaerobic (oxygen not used to produce energy). Training at this intensity increases running speed and helps the body tolerate lactic acid. Zone 3 to 4

Easy Run: Increases aerobic capacity or the ability to run longer distances. Zone 1 to 2

Flexibility: Stretch quads, hamstrings, hips, and calves after each run.

Cross Train: 30 to 60 minutes of any other type of cardio exercise other than running, such as swimming, cycling, elliptical, stair climbing, rock-wall climbing, or fast walking, that you are used to doing. Yoga is also acceptable if you have already been taking yoga for at least one month prior.

Since this program is only four weeks long, don't start any new activities other than fast running during this time to avoid risk of injury from overtraining.

(If you're printing the plan, be sure to use landscape layout for best resolution.)

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