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Walk or Run—Six Weeks to a 5k

When it’s cold outside, I wimp out and put my bike on the trainer in my basement. 

Now, I’m not a big fan of indoor exercise—I need more of a sensory experience. So, although I’d prefer to be on my bike outside, I put on my weather-resistant running shoes and head out the door.

While running is definitely not my favorite activity, it’s one of the quickest ways to get outdoor exercise when it’s cold. My philosophy: There’s no such thing as bad weather, just inappropriate clothing.

When it’s cold outside, that’s the only time I actually enjoy running—no overheating, no dehydration, no bugs. It’s the absolute best time to start training for your spring and summer races.

My favorite place to find running races in Utah is the Utah Running website. There are lots of sites that offer lists of available races— search for “running races”. You don’t even have to run. Most races invite both walkers AND runners.

There are three easy steps to preparing for a race: 
1. Sign up for a race 
2. Find a training plan 
3. Train

Having a goal helps chase those winter blues away. Sign up for a race today and use this training plan for a 5k. Then all you’ll have to do is lace up those running shoes!

 

Week 1

On run/walk days, walkers walk only. Runners run for 15 seconds/walk for 45 seconds.

Mon

Tue

Wed

Thu

Fri

Sat

Sun

Run/walk 30 minutes

Walk 30 minutes

Run/walk 30 minutes

Walk 30 minutes

Rest/ Walk

Run/walk 3.5 miles (5.6 km)

Rest/ walk

Week 2

On run/walk days, walkers walk only. Runners run for 20 seconds/walk for 40 seconds.

Mon

Tue

Wed

Thu

Fri

Sat

Sun

Run/walk 30 minutes

Walk 30 minutes

Run/walk 30 minutes

Walk 30 minutes

Rest/ Walk

Run/walk 2 miles (3.2 km) First mile faster than usual

Rest/ walk

Week 3

On run/walk days, walkers walk only. Runners run for 25 seconds/walk for 40 seconds.

Mon

Tue

Wed

Thu

Fri

Sat

Sun

Run/walk 30 minutes

Walk 30 minutes

Run/walk 30 minutes

Walk 30 minutes

Rest/ Walk

Run/walk 4 miles (6.4 km)

Rest/ walk

Week 4

On run/walk days, walkers walk only. Runners run for 30 seconds/walk for 35 seconds.

Mon

Tue

Wed

Thu

Fri

Sat

Sun

Run/walk 30 minutes

Walk 30 minutes

Run/walk 30 minutes

Walk 30 minutes

Rest/ Walk

Run/walk 2 miles (3.2 km) First mile faster than usual

Rest/ walk

Week 5

On run/walk days, walkers walk only. Runners run for 35 seconds/walk for 35 seconds.

Mon

Tue

Wed

Thu

Fri

Sat

Sun

Run/walk 30 minutes

Walk 30 minutes

Run/walk 30 minutes

Walk 30 minutes

Rest/ Walk

Run/walk 4.5 miles (7.2 km)

Rest/ walk

Race Week

On run/walk days, walkers walk only. Runners run for 40 seconds/walk for 30 seconds.

Mon

Tue

Wed

Thu

Fri

Sat

Sun

Run/walk 30 minutes

Walk 30 minutes

Run/walk 30 minutes

Walk 30 minutes

Rest/ Walk

5K run

Rest/ walk

*Increase your running time and decrease your walking time as tolerated.

Find running tips and tricks on the Intermountain Healthcare Blog.

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Post Author

Cami Flygare

Cami Flygare is a personal trainer and fitness instructor at SelectHealth. She teaches spinning, strength training, yoga, and TRX classes (to name a few). She enjoys cycling, mountain biking, rock climbing, and skiing with her family.