how to train for a 5k in 6 weeks

How To Train Your Best For a 5K Run In Just 6 Weeks

How to train for a 5k in 6 weeks??

Are you a running newbie, but would like to start training for a 5K?

Perhaps you find the process of going from couch-surfing to racing extremely daunting and it is no surprise that it takes time a lot of work, and dedication to get yourself into excellent shape.

However, it is not impossible and by starting small you can achieve your goals in the long run (pun intended).

Yet, we understand that you don’t have much time whether it is work, family, or other commitments that get in the way of exercising. Or, maybe your 5K race is coming up in a matter of weeks and you are losing time to train for it.

In any case, we are here to help! In this article, we will provide you a guide on how to train for a 5K…in only 6 weeks! By following these steps, you will pretty soon be ready to race in no time!

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Things You Will Need When Training For a 5K

Like any serious sport, having the proper equipment is essential not only to help you get better at training but also decrease the likelihood of being injured. Especially for beginners, you are more susceptible to getting hurt early on during workouts if you don’t take precautions to condition your body in an effective, but safe manner.

While running itself does not require as much equipment as other sports like lacrosse or tennis, it still is necessary to invest in some certain items to help you better prepare for training and eventually for the 5K race. We have a list for you to consider when starting your regimen:

GOOD RUNNING SHOES

The most important item to have when it comes to running is, of course, the running shoe. If you want to take the sport seriously, you will have to invest in a good pair that will keep well and support your feet.

​That said go to your nearest running store and ask a store worker which kind of shoes you should get. The worker should have a good knowledge of running shoes and will help you get your feet fitted for different pairs.

After that, you can choose which shoe fits you the best, as well as will reinforce your foot’s shape when exposed to many workout sessions.

​Besides investing in a good pair of running shoes, it also is recommended to buy some running socks, specifically designed to avoid chaffing and blisters. They are usually made from synthetic material like polyester to allow for feet breath ability.

For more information on getting good running shoes, check out our previous article "Picking The Best Running Shoes For The Awesome Runner"

SPORTS WATCH      

If you would especially like to race competitively for the 5K, then getting a watch is not a bad idea. You can use it not only to record your split times per mile but also for checking your heart rate. Many sports watches are available online at affordable prices, so pick anyone, and you’re set!

​For tracking your runs, having a GPS device (whether on your phone or elsewhere) might be useful to give you the best routes to train depending on your ability. No need to restrict yourself to running on the track when you can go out for a run around the neighborhood!

FOAM ROLLER

Training for a 5K run can be intense, even exhausting, at times. Because you’re constantly working your muscles, they will often start to ache. Consider getting a foam roller to relax your muscles, as well as get rid of soreness.

Not only will doing so make you feel comfortable, but it will also prevent you from getting easily injured from repeated workouts.

​• …and of course, stay hydrated by having a water bottle with you at all times!

Running Workout To Prepare You For a 5K.

If you are a novice to running, then it is necessary to start small before working your way up to the racing level. Here, we provide you a workout to get you ready to race in 6 weeks!

1. Pace yourself.

Start with a one-mile warm up at sixty percent of your maximum speed. By easing into running, your muscles will loosen up in preparation for the workout. In addition, pacing yourself will help your body become adjusted to the rhythms of running used for future training sessions.

Pro-tip: Perform this step for the first two weeks before increasing your warm up mileage to two and three miles during the four-week and six-week marks, respectively.

2. Fartlek training.

Known as “speed play” in Swedish, fartlek is a type of interval workout that mixes long, slow distance with bouts of short, intense sprints. This method is often used to condition your body into race mode, but without the constant fatigue and strain on your muscles from other long-distance workouts.

Pro tip: For the first two weeks, start with six intervals at racing speed (80 percent and higher) and hold it for 60 to 75 seconds, with a minute or two of slow jogging for recovery before repeating.

​For the four-week mark, increase to 90-second speed bursts, and in the last two weeks, keep the racing speed at 2 minutes, as well as adding four intervals of 30-second bursts to round out your training.

3. Cool down.

One big mistake that beginners make is not cooling down after an intense workout. While it is too easy to head home right after a speed-training session, it is important to take an extra few minutes to warm down to ensure that you won’t be too sore the following day, as well as prevent injuries from happening.

Pro tip: Ease into the cool down after the fartlek workout with a one-mile jog (40 to 50 percent speed) that is followed by at least ten minutes of stretching. This applies for all six weeks of training and you are free to increase the warm-down mileage as needed.

Overall, we believe that anyone, regardless of ability or experience can finish a 5K race. By being passionate and dedicated to running, you can achieve your goals in a safe and effective way  in as short of a time as 6 weeks!

We hope that we have provided you plenty of useful tools and information in order to get you on-track for completing your next race.

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