If you are looking to conquer a new workout challenge by training for a 5K run, we have your guide here to help you go from the couch to the race in just 7 short weeks! A 5K run may only be 3.1 miles, but you need to put a lot of time and dedication into preparing yourself to conquer this run successfully. This run is great for beginners, as you will learn how to prepare for your first long distance run. Once you complete your first 5K, you will feel on top of the world, and more prepared than ever to start training for your next big race. If you are already feeling anxious about training for your first 5K, don’t sweat it! This guide is made for all of us couch potatoes that need to start somewhere in order to prepare for out first 5K run!
I followed the 5K run training schedule, created by Olympian Jeff Galloway. This training schedule is perfect for beginners who want to learn how to run a 5K successfully. This guide incorporates a mixture of running and walking, in order to help prepare the body for the 3.1 miles. There are plenty of rest days which will also help the body recuperate and prepare for what is to come in the training process.
As you begin this training guide, you will start off by spending more time walking than running, as you need to properly train your body to get the stamina you need to run the 5K. Some days will be harder than others, but don’t get discouraged! If you follow this guide correctly, you will be well on your way to running your first 5K in no time!
You will spend a majority of the week walking rather than running. Don’t push yourself too hard. Remember that you are preparing to run 3.1 miles, and it takes a lot of time to get there. You have to train yourself on how to power walk before you can start running any sort of distance. Allow yourself 2 days of rest this week, Friday and Sunday, so you are fully prepared to take on week 2!
For week 2, you will follow the same regimen that you did during week 1. You will walk more than run, to allow your body to get used to spending more time actively on your feet. Remember to follow the specific walk/run intervals for each day, to make sure you are training properly. Take another 2 days of rest this week to prepare for the upcoming week!
You will begin to increase the walk/run intervals by running for 10 extra seconds, and walking for 10 less seconds. This slight change in activity will help the body start to get used to jogging and running. You are also preparing yourself for the 2 mile run to complete during this week. Spend another 2 days of rest to prepare for the next week!
This week is important because things start to change a bit. You will still follow the 20 seconds of running/40 seconds of walking intervals, but only take one day of rest this week. You will spend the other day walking, to help keep the body active. You can walk on Friday and rest on Sunday, or vice versa. You are now halfway done with training!
The run/walk intervals start to increase, which means you are getting closer to the big race day. Continue to follow the run/walk intervals, and if you are feeling good, spend a few more seconds running, and a few less seconds walking each day. Take another day of rest, either Friday or Sunday, and spend the other day walking. If you are feeling tired, take both days of rest to help your body recuperate for week 6.
This is a big week! You will still following the same run/walk intervals as the previous week, but you will run/walk 4.5 miles on Saturday! This is a true test to see if you are more than prepared for the race next week. If you can complete this, than you know you complete the 5K successfully! You can take two days of rest, or just one, depending on how you feel this week.
You’ve made it to race week! Make sure you follow this week’s guide very carefully so that you are well prepared and ready for the race. Complete the walk/run intervals, and be sure to give yourself a day of rest on Friday before the race. As Saturday approaches (aka race day), remind yourself that you have been training for this moment for almost 2 months, and that you are prepared for it! Don’t be discouraged if the race doesn’t go as well as you planned, just be proud of yourself for working this hard to complete this goal!
You are now ready to take on your first 5K! You got this girl!