Tuesday, August 24, 2021

On-your-butt to Across-the-finish-line 5K plan

If you're ready to start something new...to freshen up your workouts...to take your walk up to a run, there is no better motivation than to sign yourself up for your very first (or first in a while) 5K race (that's 3.1 miles). Right now is the perfect time to start your training...there are like a million races since races are going back in person and virtual races are still an option. All you need is about 10 weeks to train, if you're starting from scratch, a great pair of running shoes and some can-do attitude.

 A few things to do before you get started:

1. Check with your doctor to see if running is right for you if you have any medical condition or injury...better to be safe than sorry.

2. Get a great pair of running shoes. As avid KC runner Elizabeth says, “Seems to me that anyone can run any distance if they find a reasonable training plan and stick to it. It also seems to me that a lot of beginning runners are picking the wrong shoes - that is, buying according to looks/price - and then they get hurt and quit. I'd recommend starting out at a specialty store and having them analyze your gait. You may drop a few more dollars than you would have otherwise, but you won't feel it quite as much the morning after!” I recommend checking out Gary Gribbles, Smart Feet, Elite Feet or any other running specialty store to get the perfect shoes for you!

3. Set a realistic schedule. The plan calls for 4 days of training a week. Put your days and times that you will run on your calendar and treat those times as untouchable times…like you would a meeting at work, your graduation ceremony, happy hour with your favorite people. You get the picture. Write it/type it and then stick to it. Also, if you’re not a morning person, do not plan on training in the morning at 5 a.m…that is a recipe for disaster. Instead, train over lunch or right after work or whatever works for you.

The plan:

  •          Run 3 days per week (on non-consecutive days)
  •          Cross train 1 day per week for 30-45 minutes (weight lifting, biking, swimming, cross fit, etc.)
  •          Remember, this is YOUR training. If you can already run for a 2 minutes at a time, by all means, start at Week 5 and go from there. If you are struggling to make it past a week, stick with that particular workout until you have mastered it before going on. It’s about you and your success. It doesn’t matter how long you take to get there… it’s your attitude and perseverance. Justin, a long time KC runner says this about running: “Running is 90 percent mental - if you think you can do it, you will do it.” If you fall behind, no worries…keep at it and you will reach your goal!


Week 1: Walk 30 minutes.

Week 2: Alternate walking 2 minutes with running 30 seconds for a total of 20 minutes.

Week 3: Alternate walking 1.5 minutes with running 30 seconds for 24 minutes total.

Week 4: Walk 1.5 minutes, run 1 minute for 25 minutes.

Week 5: Run 1.5 minutes, walk 1 minute; run 3 minutes, walk 1.5 minutes for 28 minutes total.

Week 6: Run 5 minutes, walk 3 minutes for a total of 30 minutes.

Week 7: Run 6 minutes, walk 2 minutes for a total of 32 minutes.

Week 8: Run 20 minutes.

Week 9: Run 25 minutes.

Week 10: Run 30 minutes the first two days and 32 minutes the last day.

Week 11: 5K RACE!


For upcoming races in your area, click here.


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