Running Challenge with Amber Tree Leaves

In a spur of the moment, Mr. CF agreed to a challenge with Amber Tree Leaves (see here and here) to run the 10K under 45 min by June. Now that reality has sunk in, a battle plan is required (and some excel sheets!!) to get to our mutual goal.

Running Challenge with Amber Tree Leaves

Mr. CF’s plan is to run 2-3 times a week (with the emphasis on 3 times per week), starting off slow (Mr. CF has not ran in about 6 months). However, due to the inclement weather in Dutch winters (and frankly most of the rest of the year), a backup is required in case running outside is not an (enjoyable) option.

Running Challenge with Amber Tree Leaves

In a past live (read before little Miss CF came around), Mr. CF enjoyed home workout DVD’s like P90X and Insanity, in combination with cycling (primarily indoors, great way to watch a movie and do a workout; you have to multi-task if time is precious). Furthermore, the Insanity workout (and similar other ones) actually enhances your basic fitness level rather quickly, as muscle confusion and interval training really helps in overall athletic performance improvements.

The Battle Plan?

The battle plan:

  • Monday: Running (Insanity as backup)
  • Tuesday: Insanity Episode (Plyometric Cardio Circuit, Pure Cardio or Cardio Power and Resistance)
  • Wednesday: recovery
  • Thursday: Running (Insanity as backup)
  • Friday: recovery
  • Saturday: beer?
  • Sunday: finding motivation to start again on Monday

A more detailed schedule for weekly distances and paces will be made at a later date once the basic level of fitness is elevated.

Any other folks care to join in on the 10K Challenge?



  1. Hey CF,

    How are things going? All according to plan?

    I have no firm plan yet, but I start running 3 times a week. I might look at a schedule to practice not only distance but also speed.


    1. Oh, it started off great last week, was able to cycle once and do two Insanity episodes (too much rain to run). Unfortunately, flu has nailed the entire CF household…. Hope to be able to pick it up again later this week, right now it is off to bed again (tires, cold/hot, cough, you know the drill).

  2. That’s really cool that you’re doing a challenge with Amber Tree. While quite active, I don’t typically run, any tips or suggestions to get started? 🙂

    1. Hey Tawcan,
      how about: just do it?
      That is how I started: with the Nike app… About 7 months ago. I found their start to run program quite nice.
      What other sports do you do?

    2. Fully agree with ATL. The first time I prepared for a 10k (after not having ran since high school!), I started off slow with 2k twice a week, next week 2.5k, week after that 2.5k three times and worked my way to 10k. It really starts with just trapping on the running shoes and go. And, if you already have any basic level of fitness (which you probably do), it is really not that hard.

      And a recommendation based on personal experience, if you want to limit your risk of injury and speed up recovery (as you will be pounding those joints), ditch all refined sugars (whole fruit and whole grains are still a must) and increase your intake of legume (lentils, chickpeas and beans; limit meat as the saturated fats cause arteries to temporarily stiffen and increase overall body inflammation). This way you will significantly limit inflammation in your body while still getting sufficient protein for recovery. I’ve been trying this and the results are amazing, far less fatigue and recovery usually within 12-24 hours. A bonus is limited to no muscle aching.

      Hope you find the courage to join in!

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