My husband has run in five marathons. FIVE!!
Before I met him, I was a non-runner. An anti-runner even. I still don’t particularly enjoy running all that much, but it was because of his passion and dedication that I decided to sign up for my first 5K, which led to more and eventually a half marathon. Trust me when I say if I can do it, you can, too!
Why should you train for a 5K? Because you can! A 5K is the shortest distance event out there and the most common. If youâ€™re going to run to become healthy, then training for a 5K is just something you should do. A 5K run is a great distance for a beginner. And you can prepare for a 5K run in less than two months with proper training.
5K stands for 5000 meters, or roughly 3.125 miles.
We are goal-oriented people by nature. The only way most of us can get work done is by moving towards a goal, marking items off a list. And when you cross the finish line, you will feel great and all your hard work will have been worth it.
If you have a goal like, â€œTo stay fitâ€, then you will have a harder time fulfilling it. How fit you are is up to you; it is subjective. There is no one point where you can say that youâ€™ve achieved your goal. If you have a goal like, â€œGet under 25 minutes in a 5Kâ€, or â€œRun my first 5Kâ€, then you will know when you have gotten what youâ€™ve wished for. Progress!
5K training schedules should incorporate a mix of running, walking and resting. This combination helps reduce the risk of injury, stress and fatigue, while boosting your enjoyment of physical activity. Remember, you can run or walk slowly to help your body adjust to this 5K training schedule.
The training plan that I recommend and have used is outlined here. It has been a while since my last 5K, but just this week I signed up for The Color Run in my city and I will be using this plan to get ready.
Why a 5K race? Why not a 10k or even a marathon? As stated earlier, the 5K is the shortest distance race that can be found, and thousands of them are held all over the country. Being short, it wonâ€™t be agonizingly painful for any new runner. Itâ€™s the best kind of race for a newbie. Once youâ€™ve conquered the 5K and are thirsting for more, you can move onto bigger and better things, like a 10K (6.2 miles) or half marathon (13.1 miles). Never say never!
Or, you may decide races aren’t for you and just keep running as part of your regular fitness routine. There are amazing benefits to running. Above all, have fun! Research shows that exercising with friends helps you stick with a program. Many running stores and gyms offer running groups or beginners’ programs. What a great way to motivate yourself and others, meet new friends and have a super fun time on the roads.
Photo credit: boegh