At KINETIC, March Madness isn’t so much a basketball tournament as it is a challenge to improve our overall fitness. And we’re a competitive bunch here who love to set goals, so we’ve created our newest 21 day challenge and are inviting you to participate.
For the month of March, we challenge you to train for a 5K race over 21 days. We’ve even put the challenge together for you right inside your KINETIC app! How do you get started? It’s easy! If you haven’t already, download the KINETIC App (App Store or GooglePlay) and access the 21-day challenge. You can download the calendar to your phone and check off every day you work on training for a 5K.
The hardest part of getting started with running, or any exercise plan really, is just that. Getting started. But we know that you have it in you, and want to help you find success in training for a 5K in 21 days. This March, we want you to #ChallengeYourself, so we created the 21 Day Miles for March 5K Challenge to do just that. We know you can do it!
Now that you’re ready to start this challenge, we have some guidelines before you hit the road. First, don’t forget to get checked out by your physician to make sure your body is ready. The proper gear can make all the difference, so make sure you get fitted for the right shoes at a local specialty running store like RoadRunner Sports or a Nike Store.
In addition to those steps, we’ve put together a list of the six most important tips for 5K training here. Keep in mind that you should already be able to run a half mile comfortably before you start.
It’s recommended that you do some light, dynamic stretches before you run. Be careful not to overextend cold, not warmed-up muscles as it could injure you before you’ve even started. Post run it’s imperative that you give yourself at least 5 minutes of stretch time.
- Warm-Up & Warm-Down
Just like the light stretching, you’ll need to give yourself at least 5 minutes of warm-up time before you start your run. The key is to warm up the muscles with a similar motion to running, so you want to walk at a fast pace that isn’t leisurely and gets your heart rate up. When it comes time to cool down, more time is better. At least 5 minutes for a 5K run where you slowly bring your heart rate down and allow your muscles to cool property.
- Pace yourself
Pacing is one of the most difficult things to figure out when you’re starting out or even at an intermediate running level. There are various run “types” you can use to gauge, specific playlists to keep you on a time-related pace and more. Here’s a handy calculator if you want to gauge how fast your pace should be, or to determine what your pace was. Ultimately, pace is going to keep you from being injured and help you improve your race times.
- Intervals are your friend
Whether you determine your intervals by time or distance, the best way to build up your endurance is to walk for a bit, run for a bit and then walk again for a bit. For example, when you’re starting out a good plan is to walk for 90 seconds, run for 60 seconds. Repeat that 8-10 times and you’ve already run for 10 minutes that day. It’s really that simple.
- Add cross training into your routine
There are a lot of benefits to adding cross-training to your workout routine. The benefits of adding a different discipline (cycling, swimming, fitness classes, yoga, strength training) to your workout routine will ultimately make you a better runner. Cross-training will in fact correct potential imbalances in your muscles, if all you’ve done to workout to date is run.
You need to give yourself rest days, where you don’t run or workout at all so that you can fully recover. Rest days will help you both prevent and recover from injuries, and typically lead to improvement in your performance when you’re on the race path. Make sure that you’re including rest days in your routine!
Before you get moving on your Miles for March Challenge, make sure you’ve joined the KINETIC Facebook community. You can check in with us and share your progress with the whole KINETIC community by using the hashtag #KINETICMilesForMarch. We will monitor your progress, so tag us and share pics! We might just feature our favorites on DoKINETIC.com. We will be here with you to cheer you on and share in your success.
Once the Miles for March 21-day Challenge has concluded, we want to hear your story, so stay tuned for more details from KINETIC. Good luck runners!