5 Tips for a Successful Couch to 5k Training
Summer months mean lots of opportunities to run a 5k. If you’re just starting out, a couch to 5k program is a good way to gradually prepare to run the race. A couch to 5k -- for those that aren’t familiar -- is a pre-planned training program that gradually increases running intervals until you are running a full 5k.
If you’re considering starting a couch to 5k program, there are some things you can do to set yourself up for success. We recommend:
Pick a program that suits your needs. Think about your goals with the 5k program and how you want to get there. Will you be running outside or on a treadmill? When do you want to be 5k ready? Do you like the convenience of an app? Or do you prefer to have a paper plan that’s laid out in front of you? Find a couch to 5k program that suits your needs specifically. It’s out there.
Stick to the plan. It can be tempting to try to do more than the couch to 5k program outlines -- especially in the first few weeks where you’re running in just short spurts. Don’t try to do more. Gradual increases are the best way to build strength and stamina. Pushing past the recommendations can put you at risk for injury or burnout.
Find a buddy. Humans are social creatures. You are much more likely to show up to each run if you know someone is counting on you being there. Try to find someone else that will help you stay accountable. Maybe even get your dog involved if they’re a jogger -- those sad puppy dog eyes can be a good motivator to grab the leash and run.
Buy quality shoes. Any seasoned runner will tell you -- the shoes are important. Make sure you have supportive, comfortable shoes to take you on your couch to 5k journey. Bonus, this gives you an excuse to go shoe shopping and treat yourself.
Fuel your body properly. Running is an intensive exercise that requires proper food for fuel. If you’re not putting enough quality food into your body, you won’t be able to get the results you desire. Make sure you’re eating enough and it’s a healthy balance of protein, carbs, and fats.
With these little tips of the trade and some determination, going from a couch potato to a runner is completely attainable. Just think about the pride you’ll feel once you cross the finish line!
If you want some extra help, guidance, or support -- we’re here for you! Contact us today.