5K Training Schedule – Beginner

Photo By: Robert Couse-Baker

Looking for some type of 5K training schedule for a beginner? You have come to the right place! Not only will the below information give you a sample 5K training schedule, it will also explain to you why the schedule is created this way and where you can adjust to customize the training schedule to your own personal goals.

Before the 5K Training Schedule:

As much as we would like to take off on the ground running, there are a few things that need to be covered before you even start taking your first step.

If you are an absolute beginner, make sure that you have gone to your doctor to help verify that you can run safely without hurting yourself. Most people will be able to run eventually, however if you are used to a sedentary lifestyle and have not continuously exercised before, you may want to start slower than others.

Have you ran in the past? You may already be used to or have knowledge of the proper running form. If not, make sure you read up on how to run properly to make sure you do not injure yourself in the long run.

Weekly Increase in Mileage:

The below 5K training schedule reflects about a 10-12% increase in mileage (or below) each week. This percentage is used and recommended by many veteran runners. Although it is possible to go about this percentage, you may be putting unnecessary strain on your body which could cause injury due to over-training.

The below schedule can be shortened or lengthened (by weeks) as much as you’d like. If you are used to running a few miles per week, you may want to shorten the training schedule. If you are still struggling running the first week, try repeating the same week again.

Run/Walk Explained:

Since this schedule can be used by both someone who is planning on walking a 5K or running a 5K, we have included “run/walk” on many of the days.

What does this mean? Well, you can either walk the distance/time entirely, run the distance/time entirely, or do a mixture of both. If you intend to run the 5K but are still starting out, it is recommended that you do a mixture of running and walking at first and then move on to entirely running after a week or so.

The 5K Training Schedule:

WEEK Sun Mon Tues Wed Thurs Fri Sat Total Miles Increase
1 Run/Walk
20 min
Walk
30 min
Run/Walk
20 min
Walk
30 min
Walk
30 min
REST Run/Walk
2 miles
2+ 0%
2 Run/Walk
30 min
Walk
30 min
Run/Walk
30 min
Walk
30 min
Walk
30 min
REST Run/Walk
2.5 miles
2.25+  +12%
3 Run/Walk
30 min
Walk
30 min
Run/Walk
30 min
Walk
30 min
Walk
30 min
REST Run/Walk
2.75 miles
2.75+ +10%
4 Run/Walk
30 min
Walk
30 min
Run/Walk
30 min
Walk
30 min
Walk
30 min
REST Run/Walk
3 miles
 3+ +10%
5 Run/Walk
30 min
Walk
30 min
Run/Walk
30 min
Walk
30 min
Walk
30 min
REST Run/Walk
3.3 miles
 3.3+ +10%
6 Run/Walk
30 min
Walk
30 min
Run/Walk
30 min
Walk
30 min
Walk
30 min
REST Run/Walk
3.5 miles
 3.5+  +6%
7 Run/Walk
30 min
Walk
30 min
Run/Walk
30 min
REST Walk
30 min
REST 5K day  3.2+ -8%

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