Top 10 Tips for Running or Walking 5Ks

Top 10 Tips for Running or Walking 5Ks

Posted by Glenneth Reed; December 28, 2013

It is that time of year where everyone is thinking about goals or resolutions for 2014. Maybe one of your resolutions is to run (or walk) a 5K. After more than 3 years and 75 5Ks, here are my top 10 tips:

1. Find the right shoes. Head to your nearest speciality running shop in your area and get fitted. Pay whatever it costs for the shoes they recommend. It will be well worth it. Don’t just buy the brand that your friend wears, just because they are right for them does not mean they will be the best shoes for your feet.

2. Train. If you are already running 3+ miles at a time and just haven’t done a 5K, well, you probably won’t need to train. However, if you don’t exercise or don’t exercise a lot – train for this. Find a running coach or use the Coach to 5K program. Allow 6 to 8 weeks before running/walking your first 5K.

3. Don’t go out to fast. Let’s say your training has you doing 12 minute miles. Be careful not to start the 5K too fast in all the excitement. You might wear yourself out before you really get going.

4. Dress appropriately. Head over to my blog to check out my tips for dressing for a 5K.

5. Discomfort is okay, pain is not. You are tired, sore, and your muscles ache. Good. You have sharp pains or it hurts every step you take. Not good – see a doctor.

6. Walkers to the right. This is so important. If you are a walker – start at the BACK of the 5K. Let the runners do their thing and run. Then once you get going, stay to the right. If you are walking with a group, you may need to walk single file to allow others to pass.

7. Eat something beforehand. I have been known to break this rule myself and can really tell a difference. Maybe some whole wheat toast and peanut butter. It doesn’t need to be much, but you need to get some fuel in your body.

8. Hydrate properly. Most 5Ks will have 1-2 water stops along the way. I never count on them being there and ALWAYS walk with a water bottle. If it is super hot outside, definitely make sure to take some water with you.

9. Don’t come to an abrupt stop. Whether you are walking or running, on the course or just finishing, do NOT come to an abrupt stop. This is a great way to get run over.

10. Have fun!!! I love most every 5K I do. Whether for the scenery, the course itself, the t-shirt, or the company; I love walking 5Ks. Enjoy the experience and your accomplishment!

Any questions about 5Ks? Just ask in the comments or shoot me an email at glenneth at letstalkandwalk dot com.

Have a healthy day!