BEST FOR: A new or returning runner trying to run the full 5K distance
PREREQS: Able to run 20–30 minutes without walking at least 2–3 times per week. Race experience not necessary, but if you’ve pinned on a bib for a 5K or another race distance, cool. An injury-free body is key; if you’ve got lingering issues that are on their way out the door, be sure to keep up the physical therapy and/or foam rolling to continue to encourage their exit.
NUMBER OF WEEKS: 8
The 5K: Run Program is designed to train you to run a 5K race (3.1 miles of awesome!). You’ll build endurance and stamina with long runs; build strength with heart-pumping circuits and challenging, fun workouts (no, that’s not an oxymoron); and increase your speed with intervals and hill workouts.
The 5K is the most welcoming and accessible running distance. Don’t let the shorter distance fool you, though: Running (and racing) a 5K can be crazy rewarding and just wee bit taxing. The good news? Training for a 5K can be as fulfilling as training for a longer race, but with less of a time commitment on your part.