Learn-to-Run/ Running

6 Reasons to Learn-to-Run a 5K

All ages running in a 5K race

It’s spring, the weather is getting nice, and you’re realizing that you’re spring and summer clothes from previous years just aren’t fitting quite right. You want to lose a few pounds but aren’t sure how. Can I make a suggestion? Why don’t you train with me to learn-to-run a 5K? 5K’s are one of the most popular races out there, and here are six reasons why:

1. Ease. Most of you are busy, and workout time is precious. Therefore, it’s really tough to find the time to train for a half-marathon or marathon. Not so with the 5K. You can work up to it quickly (from scratch) and train for it adequately on just three days a week. Here’s a Learn-to-Run 5K schedule that I’ve put together for you.

2. Convenience. With a 5K, race day is a snap. You arrive at the race, warm up for 10 to 20 minutes, race for 40 minutes maximum, cool down, replenish with food and drink, and head home in your new race T-shirt before your family has finished breakfast.

3. Exhilaration. In a 5K, you feel like you’re really racing. And that’s a good feeling. Not many runners can maintain a 10K race pace that is much faster than their daily training pace. With a 5K, however, you can motor as much as one minute per mile faster than your usual training pace.

It is also exhilarating to know that with every race and training session, you are improving your health and overall fitness. Exercise makes your stronger and fitter. It can help lower cholesterol and boost your immune system. With time, exercise becomes truly enjoyable– and you will miss it when you don’t make time for it.

The benefits of exercise are too many to list. Not only does it give clear physical benefits, like more energy and better sleep. It makes you feel better, gradually more confident and happy. Start today and experience the exhilaration!

4. Improvement. Racing the occasional 5K is an excellent fitness booster. It will elevate your max VO2, improve form and efficiency, and make your regular training runs feel easier.

5. Change. Too often in our training, we run the same course at the same pace at the same time of day. Don’t get me wrong. Routine is good “essential, in fact, if you want to stay with a long-term running program. But too much of a good thing is too much of a good thing. You need variation, and a short-and-sweet 5K every once in awhile is a great way to mix things up.

6. Motivation. Races are great motivators. Each year, scores of runners tell me that having a regular schedule of 5K races gets them out the door on days when they would have stayed in bed in the morning or hit the couch after work.

With those 6 reasons, why don’t you join my Learn-to-run 5K forum and follow along at home?

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  • Ethan Yother
    July 26, 2010 at 12:12 pm

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  • Jason Bahamundi
    November 1, 2010 at 1:11 pm

    Great post and thoughts on the 5K. I recently started a marathon program that is 40 weeks long so that people don’t just try to jump from doing nothing to going 26.2 miles. After 10 weeks we have an impromptu 5K to celebrate the accomplishment.