Behold the 5K, a beautiful, yet sometimes unrespected distance for all levels of runners. Sarah described the training and the distance in a chapter in Train Like a Mother (the book)
The miles you put in for a 5K are plentiful enough to produce tangible changes, such as a looser waist in your jeans, better moods, and enhanced confidence. If you're a beginning runner taking on a 5K for the first time, you will likely see a smaller number on the scale. If you're gunning for a 5K PR, you'll likely see a lower number on your GPS. But as you reap the benefits of training, you won't lose ground in other places; your boss, whether that is a business-school grad or a preschooler, won't comment on you being tired or crabby.
A 5K (3.1 miles) is a perfect distance to taste success as a beginner; it's long enough to elicit pride as you cross the finish line, but not so long that you sour on training and running.
It's also the perfect distance to push yourself if you're a more experienced runner. Paradoxically, a 5K actually gets harder as you get stronger. Instead of cruising along with a smile on your face, you crank and crank with a scowl contorting your mug...Pushing hard, without letting your foot off the gas, for 5 kilometers is a challenging thrill.
Sound thrilling and perfect to you?
Then jump into ten weeks of 5K Training in the Train Like a Mother Club!
We've got two levels open for registration:
The 5K Run/Walk
THE BASICS: This 10-week program builds incrementally, through walk/run combos, to a 30-minute straight run before the 5K. All walk/run workouts are about 30 minutes, but if you can swing it, adding 5 minutes of easy walking as a warm-up and cool down to sandwich your main workout.
GREAT FOR: A beginner looking to test the waters of this training/race thing—and become a consistent runner. It’s also a perfect fit for a runner coming back from pregnancy or a serious injury, or a used-to-be runner who lost her way.
PREREQS: A couple weeks of consistent 30-ish minute walks, three to four times a week is great. No running experience needed.
THE BASICS: The Train Like a Mother 5K Race program has you honing speed in a variety of ways, from speedy strides to sustained tempo runs to seven track workouts, which can be done on a track, on the road, or on a treadmill.The plan’s long runs top out at about eight miles, ensuring you’ll have more than enough in your tank to keep the accelerator pushed down for the entire 3.1-mile race.
GREAT FOR: Because of its intensity, this 10-week program is best for experienced runners who can comfortably run five miles, and are injury-free.
THE PREREQS: Your idea of a comfortable long run is five miles, and you have an established base of 15 (or more) miles per week. A prior 5K and at least a familiarity with the burn of speed work is a bonus, but not a prerequisite.
Details and Features for Both Plans
A flexible, 10-week training plan: every week, there's a workout you can bail on and a workout you must do, providing clarity when your schedule gets overwhelming. Plus, we've got videos of original super short strength circuits (<5 minutes each!) so you'll get stronger and prevent injury.
You'll also receive a weekly newsletter on Sunday, profiling the week of training in advance, as well as providing expert advice and great deals.
A private Facebook page and a private Strava club for each group creates accountability and community galore. When you register, you're basically enrolling on an amazing #motherrunner team who has your back with every step. Whether you nailed a workout or it nailed you, your team will be there to cheer you on or lift you up--or a little of both.
In addition, in the Train Like a Mother Club, there are miles of resources, including a #motherrunner map of all the participants. A new best running friend may be just one click away.
You'll have access to two exclusive Train Like a Mother podcasts, where we answer your individual questions (As always, no question is too basic or TMI!)
Every 5K registrant receives a stocked swag bag, worth over $25. Included: a tube of Nuun, a pair of Balega socks, GU Energy Chews + GU; and samples of Action Wipes and Sweat X sports detergent. (Oh, and a train like a mother sticker....just in case you ever forget what you're doing.)
A Few FAQ's
How much does it cost?
$35.00—or $.50 a day for ten weeks of training—is for the comprehensive training plan, unlimited support, miles of resources, exclusive podcasts, and swag package, which will help you achieve a strong 5K.
Does the registration fee include a race?
No. At the end of the ten weeks, you can either run an organized 5K in your area or a virtual 5K on your own.
Wait. So I have to pay for this and a race fee?
Yep—and we’ve heard again and again from past participants, it’s worth it. Staying committed and motivated during the days, weeks of training can be ridiculously hard, especially if you're a beginning runner or really pushing yourself for a PR. If you can do that—and these programs are all about accountability and inspiration—race day becomes a celebratory victory lap, not a slog full of self-doubt.
What are the dates of the programs?
We have five waves of 5K training to accommodate races from May 7/8 (Happy Mother's Day!) to June 4/5.