I agree with (most of) the other posters. The issue isn't really about cardio fitness, but rather the adaptation of the tendons and muscles to the impact and stress of running.
And trying to push your training program faster than your legs are adapting risks injury.
There are a couple of options - aim at a later race, or plan on walk/running the 5K you mention. But either way, trying to run the whole 5K in 4 weeks is probably best avoided.
Fitness Minutes: (21,680)
1,441 3/22/10 6:39 P
You COULD run a 5k--but you risk getting injured. Running isn't just about speed and muscle strength, it has a big impact on your bones and joints. If you don't build up slow and steady, you risk injury.
That said, there's no reason why you couldn't walk and jog a 5k in intervals, just for the experience! Just don't get carried away with adreniline and end up pushing yourself into something you haven't trained for on race day. :)
Hmm, I don't know. It depends on your fitness level, I think. Did you start off as full-on couch? I gave myself 5 weeks to train for a 5K (which is April 11th) and was able to run the full distance at the end of week 2 just by shutting my brain off and going for it. I don't run FAST (I run about an 11 minute mile when I do the whole thing outdoors) but I can run the whole way. I was sure it would take me the whole training time and it would be a struggle, but now I'm running that distance (or a faster 2 miles) 3-4 days a week to train and trying to improve my time.
I would say listen to your body and skip parts of the couch 2 5K if you feel like you can.
One thing I DID do was focus on stretching very seriously before and after, also make sure to warm up, AND I went to a real running store and had them study my gait and recommend a shoe, which made a HUGE difference.
Sorry to piggyback on eveybody else, but I agree with them. . . it's not enough time and you are just waiting to get hurt.
I say that from experience. This is the third year in a row that I started training in Jan for a 12 mile race. The first two years I was running to lose weight so I pushed it. I ran everyday and pushed myself way too hard, WAY too fast. This year, I'm running to do the race which means I'm not running daily and I'm taking it slow. The first two years I was done at the beginning of Feb because of a bad hip then a bad knee. This year, I'm still going strong. Three to four days a week, with rest days.
Thanks everyone. I started with week one and it seems way to easy. Maybe I'm not going fast enough, speedwise? I've always focused on distance. Once I had the distance, speed was there for shorter distances, such as 5k.
Maybe I'm trying to compete with the BF. He just did a 5k in 33min. without doing any type of exercise besides lifting a can and softball. Figure if he can, so can I.
Fitness Minutes: (247,315)
3/22/10 12:45 P
Four weeks is not enough time to prepare for a 5K if you're starting from scratch. As Zorbs said, running six days a week is asking for an injury. A new runner should slowly ease into a regular routine. However, what you could do is a combination of jogging and walking. That would be a perfectly reasonable option.
You could try jogging the whole thing and you may be able to do it. But, you're probably going to be suffering from shin splints for a week or so. that's what happened to me when I decided to do too much too soon as well.
You can do the 5K that's coming up, but a better option would be to start training for your next 5K.
The C25K program is 8 weeks... I personally believe you should weight 8 weeks until you complete the whole program to run... I am currently on week 4... and i know theres no way that I can just skip through and run 3 miles now...
And 6 days a week is way too much of running... its bad for your knees and your body needs rest in order for it to keep functioning properly... You should always have a days rest inbetween runs.
Fitness Minutes: (137,781)
3/22/10 12:25 P
In short: no. It takes time to gradually acclimate the body to the stresses of running, and running 6 days a week as a beginner is an injury waiting to happen. C25K is meant to be done 3x/week. Find a later 5K and I'm sure you'll enjoy it a lot more when you've trained properly.
In everyones opinion, is 4 weeks enough time to get ready for a 5k? I used to be a runner but that was a long time ago and I weigh quite a bit more than before. I'm hoping for a decent time and to be able to jog the full length. I started yesterday on the C25K on the treadmill which I plan on doing 6 days a week. Thanks.
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