Sofa to 5K training plan

A step-by-step guide to get you up to the golden 5K mark in just eight weeks


sofa to 5K

When you start off running, the thought of running 5K might seem a bit like the thought of Jennifer Lawrence asking for your phone number: a nice idea that’s sadly never going to happen. But with some dedicated training, it’s absolutely possible to go from sofa to 5K in just eight weeks. Follow this schedule and the tips below and you’ll see fitness gains before you know it.

If anyone has a schedule for getting Jennifer Lawrence to ask for your number, MR asks them to politely get in touch.

sofa to 5K

Stick to the schedule, push yourself on training days, enjoy the rest days and make sure you fully recover in time for the next training session. No one likes a hero, or an idiot.

There are three days each week for running or running / walking. For the running days, aim to moderate your pace so you can run for the entire distance. On the run / walk days aim to push the pace a little with the running and keep your walking sections as short as possible. Day seven of each week is for moderate-paced cross training for around 30 minutes to keep your fitness ticking over but give your running muscles a rest. You can even use it as an extra rest day if you feel you need it that week. Always avoid running on consecutive days.

Whether you’re running indoors or outdoors, allow yourself a short warm up before each session and make sure you cool down and stretch, particularly your lower body or you’ll feel like a horse kicked you while you slept. If you’re running outdoors you may need to measure out the total distance and half mile markers along the way using your car or bicycle tripmeter, if you have one. Off you go…

Men's Running

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