The 10% rule

Do you follow the 10% rule? For those who are unaware of what it is, it’s the guideline that you should not increase your weekly running mileage by more than 10% at a time so as to prevent injury.  It’s a great rule of thumb for those just starting out with running or returning to it after a break because it does help with the proclivity to do too much too soon but it has somehow became one of those things THAT MUST BE DONE rather than a guideline.  Beware to those who dare break the rule! However I am more of the mindset that it depends on the person: their overall fitness level, the intensity and type of the sessions, the terrain, and if they have a decent base already built up.

I’m not saying you *should* break the 10% recommendation but it isn’t always necessary to adhere to it religiously.  It’s far more important to not try to increase the intensity and distance at the same time, i.e., don’t go out and run a much longer distance than you have done before AND include a speed session in the middle of it.  Also of utmost importance is to listen to your body! If it is begging for a break then you should back off, rest is as important to training as the workouts are.

This post was inspired by my personal experiences and the fact that I have broken the 10% mileage ‘rule’ this month.  So what are your thoughts and experiences with what has become one of the golden rules of running?


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