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Tolerence for a 10 year old

Answered By Jeff Arbogast

Question

My 10 year old daughter recently started track. I wanted to supplement her training and have been taking her out to the track. So far, we jog a half mile, then do some stretching, then do various sprint workouts. I'm not sure how long or hard a little person should train. Do you have some guidence?

Answer

It is super that you are giving some guidance here . . . but at 10 there is a long way to go to develop. Always make sure the 10-year-old initiates the workouts . . .that will be a key 'check' to make sure they are fun. Use some gentle goalsetting and reward PRs in performance as well as PRs in process (training) goals. But . .10 is extremely young. Your goal should be to keep "the fire within" burning until middle school and high school, then it is the job of that coach to motivate your daughter to want to continue running after HS is over. All these stages require FUN . . .the building block of success. Far too many young athletes get "burned out" not due to training load, but a lack of fun. For volume . . . keep the training load light, perhaps 3 times per week where the volume per day is 1-3 miles but varied in workout style. At 12 years, you can re-assess and then at 14 do it again as she enters HS. Err on the side of caution . . . light and varied workouts in good shoes and competition within positive limits. There is nothing wrong with competing as a 10-year-old . . . but at that age, all must be positive and fun so this young lady develops into a force when she is 14-16-18-22 ! Train hard . . .have fun . . . Arb

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