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How to Crush Your Next 5K

  • Category: Fitness
  • Posted On:
  • Written By: Baton Rouge General
How to Crush Your Next 5K

Whether you’re racing for a cause, or looking to challenge yourself, 5Ks are one of the most popular races out there. Race day is quick and convenient, and at 3.1 miles, almost anyone can complete a 5K with proper training and the right advice. We asked our personal trainers to share their top three tips to help you crush your next 5K:

1 -- Wear the right shoes
You wouldn’t step into the batter’s box without the right bat, would you? A good pair of running shoes is no different. During the landing portion of your stride, your foot absorbs two to three times your body weight.And what affects the foot also affects the ankle, knee, hip, and spine.Therefore, cushioning, flexibility (in the right places), traction, and stability are vital for an effective run.

2 -- Train for it
If you’re new to running, a progressive training program will get you safely to the finish line. A fitness specialist or running coach can help determine your baseline then progress you safely and effectively based on your timeline and goals.

For the do-it-yourselfers, the safest bet is to begin a walking program, then slowly progress into jogging. Here’s a basic six week program that can be adjusted according to your timeframe:

  • Start out walking 4-5 days per week, 15 minutes each day
  • Progressing 10-20% per week
  • Progressing to walking at 45 minutes
  • Then add distance with jogging
  • Progress at your own pace

Full body strength training 1-3 times per week is ideal to properly activate and strengthen muscles needed for walking and running (not to mention daily functioning?). ?

3 -- Track your progress

Be sure to use a tracking system like a fit bit or phone to document each workout and see your progress. There are many great apps that track distance and time easy to use and motivating when you need it the most.

Experienced runners also suggest:

  1. The right music to keep you pumped up throughout the race.
  2. Video yourself running for 30 seconds to correct your form. Movement patterns that could use correcting include leaning to one side, elevated (shrugged) shoulders and allowing your feet to spend too much time on the ground.
  3. Dress as if it’s going to be 20 degrees warmer outside.

With themes from red dresses and superheroes to disco and tutus, 5Ks are a fun way to stay active and social with friends and family. They are also a great way to challenge both the novice runner and the veteran. Click here for a list of upcoming races in and near Baton Rouge.

Happy trails!

Jheri Corb

Jheri Corb, Certified Exercise Physiologist
Baton Rouge General Health and Wellness Center

Phone: (225) 819-1175