By Robbie Goldman
DHAC Exercise Physiologist
So you’ve been working hard at the gym since your New Year’s Resolution. Now What? Someone put the idea into your head to try and complete your first 5K race. How do you get started?
First: Find yourself a race that is convenient to your home and on a convenient day/time. A good reference is www.coolrunning.com. Many races are scheduled on weekends throughout the spring and summer all over New England. A GREAT race to consider is the Corrib Classic 5K Road Race right here in West Roxbury. This year, the race takes place on Sunday June 3rd, 2012. I would recommend giving yourself 3-4 weeks of training before race day.
Second: Now that you have a date, time, and place it’s time to start training. A 5 kilometer race is equal to a distance of 3.1 miles. You want to make sure your body is conditioned to either jog or walk a distance equal to at least 3 miles. If you’ve never walked or run that far start with a distance less than 3 miles and gradually increase over 3-4 weeks. Try walking for 1 mile on two 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….almost!
Lastly: Just because you can walk or run 3 miles 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 go to the local high school track. Four times around is equal to 1 mile. Break up your distance into intervals.
If you’re new to jogging try walking 2 laps, then jogging 1 lap, and finish by walking the last lap. (1 Mile)
Next week up your game! Walk 2, jog 1, walk 2, jog 1. (1.5 Miles)
Week 3 – Walk 2, jog 2, walk 2, jog 2, walk 2. (2.5 Miles)
By week 4 you are to 3 miles, OUTSIDE!
GREAT JOB on all your hard work!! It’s going to feel PHENOMENAL when you cross that finish line after completing your first 5K road race. Be sure to let us know which race you signed up for and let us know how you did and more importantly, how you trained!