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Your Best 5K Training Plans

Photo by Corbis Images

First 5k

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There’s nothing quite as exhilarating—or nerve-racking—as your first race. But fear not! Simply follow this schedule, and you will be 5k-ready in 8 weeks—no prior race experience required.

You are ready for this plan if you can complete a 15-minute run comfortably and have been training consistently for a few months. Your 5k goal should be to cover the distance and have fun. If you are like many first timers, you may be worried about coming in last. Don’t be. Many 5ks attract walkers, so the chances of being the last one to cross the finish line are pretty slim. Even if you are, you’ll be too proud and happy to care.

Week Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday
8 XT or Rest 15 min E XT or Rest 15 min E Rest 15 min E 18 min LR
7 XT or Rest 15 min E XT or Rest 20 min Ew/ 4 S Rest 15 min E 22 min LR
6 XT or Rest 20 min E XT or Rest 20 min E
w/ 4 US
Rest 15 min E 25 min LR
5 XT or Rest 20 min E XT or Rest 25 min E
w/ 6 S
Rest 15 min E 30 min LR
4 XT or Rest 20 min E XT or Rest 25 min E
w/ 6 US
Rest 20 min E 30 min LR
3 XT or Rest 25 min E XT or Rest 30 min E
w/ 6 S
Rest 20 min E 35 min LR
2 XT or Rest 30 min E XT or Rest 30 min E
w/ 6 US
Rest 20 min E 40 min LR
Race week XT or Rest 30 min E XT or Rest 20 min E
w/ 4 S
Rest 5K RACE!

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