Good! You’re ready to start to run! In this article you’ll find the tools you need to run 5K in 7-10 weeks, including a run training schedule, podcast and apps.
Hi beauty! As might have read in my recent blogs, I have recently picked up on running again (read why I stopped running for 9 months), as I missed it so much! I am picking up on running very carefully though, taking it slow, taking my time and training with schedules/apps/podcasts to avoid the risk of getting injured again.
Now let’s talk about you: since you landed on this article, I assume that you are ready for it: running your first 5K. I understand that although there is a weak flame of motivation burning inside of you, actually starting to run needs a little push in the back. That push can be lots of things, like sunny weather,cool workout clothes (psst: I am giving away cool running shoes!), a partner in crime or … me (best option ;))!
So whip your hair, wrap those breasts in shock absorbers, stick your bum in sexy pants and GO!
Do you dare? I do, but not at night. Source
Careful for over-motivation!
Stop right there, hon’ (stop right now, thank you very much, I need s . …)! If you have never ever ran before, it is important to start slow, ‘cause if you are over-motivated and go too far too soon and run too often, the risk on injuries like a runners knee and shin splints (like I had last year) is high. Once you have these injuries, it will take a long time and a lot of rest (read: no more running for a while) to recover.
Running your first 5K in 7-10 weeks
This is how we’re gonna get us to our first 5K: we’ll have a careful start of our running activities. I know, doesn’t sound very sexy, but a careful start is so important! Rushing through the K’s is a risk on developing injuries that will kill you sooner or later. So we’re gonna train with run training schedules, podcasts and/or run training apps.
There are several options within these schedules/podcasts/apps that offer guidance and help you to run 5K in 7-10 weeks. These are the best options that I found. It is up to you which one works best for you:
Nike+ Running app
Download the Nike+ training app and sign up for free the 5K beginner training schedule. In 26 runs during 8 weeks you’ll be guided to running 5K (3.1 mile).
The program lets you run 15 mile per week and alternates walking with running and cross training (yoga, biking, swimming etc.) with rest days. A pretty fun schedule, which I used a lot before. It has a fun feature that integrates social media (live motivational cheers from Facebook friends!) and has the possibility to challenge friends. You can furthermore chose your own playlist. The downside is that there are no vocals that tell you exactly when to run or walk during your training.
The RunKeeper app is pretty much the same as the Nike+ Running app, although you can’t get live cheers from Facebook friends (bummer!). It does offer the possibility to sync with MyFitnessPal, keeping track of your caloric balance.
View from your dashboard on the 5K training schedule. Source
After you have downloaded RunKeeper on your device, log into your dashboard on your computer and join a 5K training program. Some of these training programs are paid, others are free. For this app also counts that the downside is that I miss a coaching kind of voice-over telling me exactly when to run or walk.
All together, I find the Runkeeper app the most complete and conveniant app among the running apps. Sanny also reviewed the app and rated it with an 8.5.
‘Start to Run’ podcast, run training schedule and app
Dutch and Belgian people probably know the run training program ‘Start to Run” by Evy Guyaert, that guides you during a 3 times a week 10 week run program to your first 5K. The program offers vocal coaching in the form of podcasts, a run training schedule focusing on time and an app, which includes vocal coaching.
The ‘Start to Run’ podcasts are very pleasant, as they alternate up tempo, funky music and motivating voice-overs that tell you exactly when to run and when to walk. The downside is that the music is a bit outdated (originating from 2006) and the podcasts aren’t available in English.
The ‘Start to Run’ app is a better choice if you prefer your own playlists while still being coached with voice-overs during your trainings.
My favorite run coach, unfortunately only available in Dutch. Source
The app is available for free in the App store and Play store and after a free trial in app purchases are required to unlock more run training schedules. The downside is that this app is only available in Dutch.
Evy offers guidance to the English speaking community in the form of a written out run training schedule that guides you in 7 or 10 weeks to 5K. It does require a bit of work, but what you can do is use a gym boss or Tabata app (more about that later) and copy the intervals from the schedule into the app by hand.
Download the 5K in 7 weeks run training schedule in English
Download the 5K in 10 weeks run training schedule in English (if you want to take it a little slower)
Or download the 5K in 10 weeks run training schedule in Dutch
Interval training app
An interval training app can help you by giving alarms, indicating when you have to walk and when to run. It is a bit of work to schedule all the alarms, as the intervals in run training schedules are different most of the time.
Optional interval timer apps:
Download Interval Timer for iPhone in iTunes
Download Interval Timer for Android in the Play Store
Download Tabata-timer for iPhone in iTunes
Download Tabata-timer for Android in the Google Play Store
No more excuses: time to get started and wiggle!
To start running, use guidance in the form of a run training schedule, run training app or podcast. I personally installed the ‘Start to Run’ app, but find running with RunKeeper or Nike+ Running in combination with the in app schedules and an interval timer app a perfect second (and free!) option.
Make sure to run on good quality shoes and take my other tips into account that I have described here.
Which of the above options has your preference? With which one of the above do you have good (or bad) experiences with?
Notice: I am not a run pro. This article is based on the best options that I found for myself in my search for decent run coaching. t works for me and it might as well work for you. Always consult your doctor before you start working out if you have never worked out before. Furthermore: as soon as you feel pain when running: walk and go home. Rest a few days and try again.
Featured image: (c) Nike