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The 20min 5K

  • 13-09-2019 11:18pm
    #1
    Closed Accounts Posts: 13


    Just looking for some input...

    I'm not really a runner but last summer I ran a bit and did 2 5k runs, the first one was over 24 minutes and then then next week I'd shaved just over 2 minutes off it and got down to 22 minutes.

    I would love to run a 5k in 20 minutes or 19.59! How doable is this over the course of a few months? Is it a particularly hard one? Does it require much structured training ?

    Also, I would like to join a local club to have people to run with. There are a few clubs near me. Just wondering if my goal is too "small" to join a running club?

    Thanks!


Comments

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,415 ✭✭✭Singer


    Just looking for some input...

    I'm not really a runner but last summer I ran a bit and did 2 5k runs, the first one was over 24 minutes and then then next week I'd shaved just over 2 minutes off it and got down to 22 minutes.

    I would love to run a 5k in 20 minutes or 19.59! How doable is this over the course of a few months? Is it a particularly hard one? Does it require much structured training ?

    Also, I would like to join a local club to have people to run with. There are a few clubs near me. Just wondering if my goal is too "small" to join a running club?

    All clubs would love to have folks showing up with some enthusiasm :)

    A small bit of structured training can go a long way. By the sounds of it, you're making great improvements off not much training. If you start running consistently and with a bit of structure, sub-20 and beyond may not be far off at all. Everybody's different so there's no simple answer to whether it will be hard or not. If you actually want to improve as a runner and dedicate time and effort to running, then there are plenty of running plans available online that will help a lot.


  • Registered Users Posts: 919 ✭✭✭ShaunC


    One word, Parkrun. Or is that two wordsðŸ˜
    Saturday morning 9.30 in most towns.
    Free timed 5k with lots of different level runners.


  • Registered Users Posts: 6,582 ✭✭✭Swashbuckler


    I'm not really a runner but last summer I ran a bit and did 2 5k runs, the first one was over 24 minutes and then then next week I'd shaved just over 2 minutes off it and got down to 22 minutes.

    That's super stuff off of very little focused training. Would be shocked if you didn't manage sub 20 with some dedicated, structured and disciplined training. Going out week after week trying to better your times in training will quickly have you stagnate.

    Clubs accomadate all levels of people. Wouldn't worry.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 13 inthepocket


    That's super stuff off of very little focused training. Would be shocked if you didn't manage sub 20 with some dedicated, structured and disciplined training. Going out week after week trying to better your times in training will quickly have you stagnate.

    Clubs accomadate all levels of people. Wouldn't worry.

    Thanks all. Wasnt sure if running a weekly 5k was the best way to get better at but I guess it is a good place to start!


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,412 ✭✭✭Lazare


    Thanks all. Wasnt sure if running a weekly 5k was the best way to get better at but I guess it is a good place to start!

    Swashbuckler recommended a book called Faster Road Racing to me back in January when I was in the spot you're in now.

    Can't recommend it highly enough myself, following the advice and structured training from it got me my sub 20. Understanding the type of focussed training required for 5k is key, the book lays all that out really well.

    As others have said, if you're running 22 mins off little training there's no reason why you can't smash 20 mins.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 5,833 ✭✭✭daheff


    If you want to run faster...then you need to run faster.

    Your goal is 4min Kms. So maybe find your self a running track and start doing timed runs at your goal pace (or 4.30 & work your way down.)

    Run a lap to warm up...stretch & then run a lap at your set time. Take 30 sec break and go again m. Repeat this until you’ve done 8 or 10 laps. Finish off with an easy 4-5 laps & stretch.

    Key to this is that your body learns how to run at your desired pace & gains stamina.
    Over time instead of 1 lap and a break do 2 & a break(30 sec).


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,412 ✭✭✭Lazare


    While key Vo2Max workouts like the one above are vital, your main focus needs to be on aerobic running, easy running. A lot of it.

    It's not really about running fast, it's about enduring a fast pace.

    That means tons of quick recovery easy running.

    Spend about 10 or 12 weeks with nothing but easy running, build an aerobic base. Get up to a minimum of 30 mpw.
    Then begin weekly key workouts like the one above, some stides on easy days. A progression long run.

    Pick a target race a couple of months out from the end of your base phase then smash it.

    Be patient.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 13 inthepocket


    Lazare wrote: »
    While key Vo2Max workouts like the one above are vital, your main focus needs to be on aerobic running, easy running. A lot of it.

    It's not really about running fast, it's about enduring a fast pace.

    That means tons of quick recovery easy running.

    Spend about 10 or 12 weeks with nothing but easy running, build an aerobic base. Get up to a minimum of 30 mpw.
    Then begin weekly key workouts like the one above, some stides on easy days. A progression long run.

    Pick a target race a couple of months out from the end of your base phase then smash it.

    Be patient.

    Thanks. I've been cycling competitively for years so I think that has given me a solid base to work off. I've found running in hurling training I'd tend to be one of the quickest over 2k but not at all for sprints.


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,355 ✭✭✭Jim Gazebo


    I hate to invade but I'm quite similar to above. Have got involved in adventure racing doing my first at the weekend, remarkably .y fastest 5km time was at it. Probably due to adrenaline and people around me. 22 minutes. I've been doing a bit of running here and there over last 2 to 3 years. Started out at 28-30mins, got it to 25 had a lull, and got back to it this month after a lot of threadmill running but no outdoor running. This went on for 8-9 months previous. Got sub 24 start of month and obviously the 22 this weekend. I'm looking at a longer race in 6 weeks time, so I need two things, or want I suppose, to be able to run 15k comfortably and improve my 5km time. I did 10km for the first time ever tonight, really slowed in second 5km took me just on 53 mins.

    Any tips on a structure to my training ? I've read about HIIT, is this the way to go? Or just keep ramping the distance slowly and keep running it like I did with 5km?


  • Registered Users Posts: 10,413 ✭✭✭✭Murph_D


    I think HIIT is ok - as long as the high impact stuff is complemented by a much greater volume of lower impact aerobic training - the 5k is an endurance event.

    You could do worse than have a read of Matt Fitzgerald’s “80/20” book - I used one of the 5k plans ther for a successful sub-20 attempt earlier this year. Getting from 22 to <20 isn’t as easy as it sounds, but a structured approach with a bit of discipline will get you there eventually!


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  • Registered Users Posts: 2,355 ✭✭✭Jim Gazebo


    Murph_D wrote: »
    I think HIIT is ok - as long as the high impact stuff is complemented by a much greater volume of lower impact aerobic training - the 5k is an endurance event.

    You could do worse than have a read of Matt Fitzgerald’s “80/20” book - I used one of the 5k plans ther for a successful sub-20 attempt earlier this year. Getting from 22 to <20 isn’t as easy as it sounds, but a structured approach with a bit of discipline will get you there eventually!

    I'll have a look at it cheers. Yeah, I'm looking at signing up to circa 55km adventure race in October to have something to aim at. Still weighing it up but probably sign up for tomorrow. Then a schedule of HIIT, running the distance and cycling up to it to see how we go.


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,355 ✭✭✭Jim Gazebo


    Jim Gazebo wrote: »
    I hate to invade but I'm quite similar to above. Have got involved in adventure racing doing my first at the weekend, remarkably .y fastest 5km time was at it. Probably due to adrenaline and people around me. 22 minutes. I've been doing a bit of running here and there over last 2 to 3 years. Started out at 28-30mins, got it to 25 had a lull, and got back to it this month after a lot of threadmill running but no outdoor running. This went on for 8-9 months previous. Got sub 24 start of month and obviously the 22 this weekend. I'm looking at a longer race in 6 weeks time, so I need two things, or want I suppose, to be able to run 15k comfortably and improve my 5km time. I did 10km for the first time ever tonight, really slowed in second 5km took me just on 53 mins.

    Any tips on a structure to my training ? I've read about HIIT, is this the way to go? Or just keep ramping the distance slowly and keep running it like I did with 5km?

    I tried to run 5km today to keep the legs loose. Big big stiffness in it to the point I didn't finish the 5k, only made it to 3 and ran home making it 4, never had it before but I was nearly at walking pace so resting for tonight and tomorrow I might go for a cycle to change it up, might need a rest day somewhere though. Starting to doubt the longer Adventure Race distance after today's effort...


  • Registered Users Posts: 3,825 ✭✭✭IvoryTower


    I would forget about HIIT , you ideally want a coach or a beginners training plan. Most of your runs should be easy, very easy. With 1 or 2 hard sessions throughout the week and a long run at the weekend.

    If I was starting out again id probably run easy 5-6 days a week easy for about 12 weeks minimum but nobody wants to hear that. Something like the below would be a solid week imo

    Mon- rest
    Tues - tempo
    Wed - easy run
    Thurs - Easy run
    Fri - 1k repeats
    Sat - Easy run or rest
    Sun - longer easy run

    The easy stuff should feel.......easy


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,412 ✭✭✭Lazare


    Also, @ Jim, you need to pick a side. An ultra adventure race is as different to the 5k, in terms of what's required as hurling is to Gaelic football.

    You'll improve at 5k for sure with ultra training but if you want to max your potential at either you've got to specialise.


  • Registered Users Posts: 97 ✭✭Good jib!


    @ OP

    It's going to depend on your age and weight/height as well. Lots of people on here state their goals, but it's obviously going to be different if you're a twentysomething or an aulfella like myself (mid 40s).


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 591 ✭✭✭Cona


    Lots of advice floating around but can be hard to summarize it in your own head. From someone who was in your situation previously, you need to be careful when people advise you too just run lots of slow miles. Yes, it’s true you need an aerobic base for 5k but you MUST simulate 5k effort running in training if you are going to improve those times. They won’t come down much by just jogging everywhere. I’ve posted the below in the past which should give you an idea:


    “I was in a similar situation to you a few years back. If you want that extra boost in performance, you need to review your current training and make some adjustments so that you are stressing your body into getting fitter.
    My advice:

    - Think and train in blocks of 4-6weeks. It takes your body time to adapt to new training stresses. Stress, test, rinse, repeat.

    - increase your mileage. Sub 20 5k you should be running minimum 35-45 miles a week (More is better).

    - LsR of 10-12 miles will be sufficient to break 20. Around 8 - 8.30 min per mile pace

    - include 1 VO2 max session per week e.g. Running at 90-95% max. Example: 5x1k at race pace or slightly faster.

    - include 1 tempo run per week. This session will help with speed endurance example: 12 mins @ LT pace + 10 mins at LT + 8 @ LT pace. 4 min jog recovery. LT pace should be around 7 min mile (that is if your close to sub20 5k. Adjust lt pace outwards if your not, around 40 secs slower than current 5k pace)

    - Embrace the pain. 5k is 20 minutes of pure pain so you have to be used to this and need to simulate this in training.

    Mon: 7 easy
    Tues: 3 WU, 3x1000m off 2 min recovery + 3x800m off 1 min recovery + 3x400 off 45 secs recovery, WD
    Wed: 5 recover
    Thurs: 2 WU + 2 x 10 mins @ LT pace, 2 WD
    Fri: Rest
    Sat: 8-12 miles

    I would suggest to copy this template for 6 weeks, albeit varying the sessions, trying to add very slight progressions each week. Then test your 5k pace in a park run. If not quite there, repeat above for another 6weeks.
    Stress, test, rinse, repeat.


  • Registered Users Posts: 3,825 ✭✭✭IvoryTower


    I would be very surprised if either OP's are currently running 15mpw nevermind 40mpw


  • Registered Users Posts: 3,825 ✭✭✭IvoryTower


    19.42 i take it :)


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,355 ✭✭✭Jim Gazebo


    IvoryTower wrote: »
    19.42 i take it :)

    Yes this week, 20 miles running. and 45 miles cycling.


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,355 ✭✭✭Jim Gazebo


    Cona wrote: »
    Lots of advice floating around but can be hard to summarize it in your own head. From someone who was in your situation previously, you need to be careful when people advise you too just run lots of slow miles. Yes, it’s true you need an aerobic base for 5k but you MUST simulate 5k effort running in training if you are going to improve those times. They won’t come down much by just jogging everywhere. I’ve posted the below in the past which should give you an idea:


    “I was in a similar situation to you a few years back. If you want that extra boost in performance, you need to review your current training and make some adjustments so that you are stressing your body into getting fitter.
    My advice:

    - Think and train in blocks of 4-6weeks. It takes your body time to adapt to new training stresses. Stress, test, rinse, repeat.

    - increase your mileage. Sub 20 5k you should be running minimum 35-45 miles a week (More is better).

    - LsR of 10-12 miles will be sufficient to break 20. Around 8 - 8.30 min per mile pace

    - include 1 VO2 max session per week e.g. Running at 90-95% max. Example: 5x1k at race pace or slightly faster.

    - include 1 tempo run per week. This session will help with speed endurance example: 12 mins @ LT pace + 10 mins at LT + 8 @ LT pace. 4 min jog recovery. LT pace should be around 7 min mile (that is if your close to sub20 5k. Adjust lt pace outwards if your not, around 40 secs slower than current 5k pace)

    - Embrace the pain. 5k is 20 minutes of pure pain so you have to be used to this and need to simulate this in training.

    Mon: 7 easy
    Tues: 3 WU, 3x1000m off 2 min recovery + 3x800m off 1 min recovery + 3x400 off 45 secs recovery, WD
    Wed: 5 recover
    Thurs: 2 WU + 2 x 10 mins @ LT pace, 2 WD
    Fri: Rest
    Sat: 8-12 miles

    I would suggest to copy this template for 6 weeks, albeit varying the sessions, trying to add very slight progressions each week. Then test your 5k pace in a park run. If not quite there, repeat above for another 6weeks.
    Stress, test, rinse, repeat.

    Thanks for this , I haven't read it fully yet but when I do I'll come back with any questions at a quick glance it looks interesting.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 2,355 ✭✭✭Jim Gazebo


    Cona wrote: »
    Lots of advice floating around but can be hard to summarize it in your own head. From someone who was in your situation previously, you need to be careful when people advise you too just run lots of slow miles. Yes, it’s true you need an aerobic base for 5k but you MUST simulate 5k effort running in training if you are going to improve those times. They won’t come down much by just jogging everywhere. I’ve posted the below in the past which should give you an idea:


    “I was in a similar situation to you a few years back. If you want that extra boost in performance, you need to review your current training and make some adjustments so that you are stressing your body into getting fitter.
    My advice:

    - Think and train in blocks of 4-6weeks. It takes your body time to adapt to new training stresses. Stress, test, rinse, repeat.

    - increase your mileage. Sub 20 5k you should be running minimum 35-45 miles a week (More is better).

    - LsR of 10-12 miles will be sufficient to break 20. Around 8 - 8.30 min per mile pace

    - include 1 VO2 max session per week e.g. Running at 90-95% max. Example: 5x1k at race pace or slightly faster.

    - include 1 tempo run per week. This session will help with speed endurance example: 12 mins @ LT pace + 10 mins at LT + 8 @ LT pace. 4 min jog recovery. LT pace should be around 7 min mile (that is if your close to sub20 5k. Adjust lt pace outwards if your not, around 40 secs slower than current 5k pace)

    - Embrace the pain. 5k is 20 minutes of pure pain so you have to be used to this and need to simulate this in training.

    Mon: 7 easy
    Tues: 3 WU, 3x1000m off 2 min recovery + 3x800m off 1 min recovery + 3x400 off 45 secs recovery, WD
    Wed: 5 recover
    Thurs: 2 WU + 2 x 10 mins @ LT pace, 2 WD
    Fri: Rest
    Sat: 8-12 miles

    I would suggest to copy this template for 6 weeks, albeit varying the sessions, trying to add very slight progressions each week. Then test your 5k pace in a park run. If not quite there, repeat above for another 6weeks.
    Stress, test, rinse, repeat.

    Assuming WU is warm up and all the weeks numbers are in miles? I understand the plan and that looks really good. What I am thinking of doing is a 60km adventure race in a few weeks and then focusing on sub 20min 5km over Xmas while the adventure races are off season. So I am increasing distance at the moment and doing some brick sessions with cycling and running to get better at the transition. Exciting when there is something to aim for.


  • Registered Users Posts: 6,582 ✭✭✭Swashbuckler


    Going from 20 miles a week to the plan above without some sort of base building or progression is a good way to end up on the scrapheap.


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,355 ✭✭✭Jim Gazebo


    Going from 20 miles a week to the plan above without some sort of base building or progression is a good way to end up on the scrapheap.

    No no no, I am going to work towards the 60km A/R, cycling kayak and run, and after that I might work up towards the plan above. The 10km I did last week nearly killed me never mind running 5 miles as an easy run.


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