Your First 5K Road Race!
Marathon Monday is less than a week away! Starting in 1897, the Boston Marathon is the world’s oldest annual marathon bringing in an average of 30,000 registered participants each year. What better motivation is there to convince you to start considering signing up for a 5K?!
Find yourself a race that is located somewhere convenient for you and is on a convenient day/time. A good race reference is www.coolrunning.com. Many races are scheduled on weekends throughout the spring and summer all over New England. An awesome race to consider is the Corrib Classic 5K Road Race just over in West Roxbury.
Start training! A 5-kilometer race is equal to a distance of about 3.1 miles. You want to make sure you’re body is conditioned to either jog or walk a distance at least equal to 3 miles. If you’ve never walked or run that far, jump on a treadmill and start with a distance less than 3 miles and gradually increase over 3-4 weeks. Try walking for 1 mile on 2 non-consecutive days of the week. See how you feel. If you feel OK then try walking 2 miles the next week. After 3-4 weeks now you’re up to 3-4 miles and YOU ARE READY! Well, almost!
Just because you’ve completed 3 miles walking on a treadmill doesn’t mean you’re ready for 3 miles outside on the pavement. Try your walk run outside at least one day a week. If distance is difficult to measure in your neighborhood then head to the local high school track. Four times around is equal to 1 mile. Try breaking up your distance into intervals.
Want to try mixing in some jogging?
Week 1: Try walking 2 laps, then pick up the pace and jog 1 lap, and finish by walking the last lap. (1 Mile)
Week 2: Up your game! Walk 2 laps, jog 1, walk 2, jog 1. (1.5 Miles)
Week 3: Bump it up a little more! Walk 2 laps, jog 2, walk 2, jog 2, walk 2. (2.5 Miles)
Week 4: You are up to 3 miles, OUTSIDE! (High-five!)
Now pat yourself on the back for all of your hard work!!
Get ready for an amazing feeling of accomplishment when you cross that finish line after completing your first 5K road race.
– Robbie G., Exercise Physiologist at Dedham Health