Adkins included 12 players who had come through the club's academy in the squad that defeated Ipswich 1-0, including 22-year-old goalscorer Jake Taylor.
"This was a tough fixture, but the young lads showed great heart and desire," Adkins said. "We had many young players in important positions, we have to give them some scope.
"Jake wasn't in the picture here for a while, but he's worked his socks off and he's got ability as well. And he worked so hard to keep chasing to get his goal.
"With all these young lads, most of them are going to get better and better. With them, the long-term future of the club is going in the right direction.
"Ipswich threw the kitchen sink at us at the end. We had to stand up to it and we did."
Initially, the inexperience of Reading's line-up showed. Ipswich were impressive going forward and keen to make amends for their 1-0 Capital One Cup defeat against Crawley Town in midweek.
David McGoldrick almost gave them an early lead when trying to divert in Luke Chambers' powerful shot, but Reading midfielder Jordan Obita was on hand to flick it over the crossbar.
Reading, who drew 2-2 at Wigan on the opening day of the season, weathered the storm efficiently and went ahead in the 26th minute.
Chris Gunter played a long diagonal pass forward, which McGoldrick was unable to head clear of the onrushing Taylor.
Taylor, an Ascot-born Wales Under-21 midfielder, latched on to the ball and coolly guided it past Ipswich goalkeeper Dean Gerken for his first senior goal on only his second start.
Ipswich were quick to regain their momentum and dominated the rest of the first half and most of the second.
McGoldrick sprinted through hoping to equalise, but was denied by a fine last-ditch challenge from Reading centre-back Michael Hector.
Daryl Murphy should also have done better with an effort at the near post that trickled narrowly past the far post.
In a late flurry, Ipswich left-back Tyrone Mings headed powerfully towards goal only for Reading left-back Shaun Cummings to nod it on to the bar and away to safety.
"There was nothing Tyrone did wrong," Ipswich manager Mick McCarthy said. "It was just a fabulous piece of defending, otherwise we would have got a point.
"Our overall performance was good, especially in the second half. We easily did enough to get something out of the game.
"But they had a Johnny on the spot (Taylor) and we didn't. Around most of the pitch, we were fine. We just didn't score.
"We got in good positions but just didn't work their keeper enough."