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5K

THE ANATOMY OF A 5K 

The 5K is the most intense event out of the 4 classical road race distances. Given the same training level, a marathon runner will not beat a 5K runner over the 5K.

 

5K race intensity

  • 60% of your maximal speed
  • 95% of your VO2max
  • 6.2mmol/L of blood lactate (LT = 4mmol/L)

5K energy supply

  • 92% aerobic
  • 8% anaerobic

5K muscle fiber recruitment

  • 100% of your slow-twitch fibers
  • 87% of your intermediate fast-twitch fibers
  • 55% of your super fast-twitch fibers

 

5K training requires a unique combination of maximal aerobic capacity (VO2max), lactate threshold/tolerance, maximal running speed, resistance to fatigue, and running economy. In order to maximize these variables, you will need to carry out your training in different training zones.
 
 

NON-LINEAR PERIODIZATION

What’s more, peak performance training requires a logical sequence where one adaptation piggybacks on another. I’m an advocate of non-linear periodization (multi-pace training) where the emphasis transitions from general to 5K-specific pace.

 

Focus Block 1 = Twin-Base

Highly polarized training with a focus on the extreme ends of the pace spectrum.

>>> General Endurance + Maximal Speed

 

Focus Block 2 = Conditioning

The inclusion of middle-paces that develop your fitness to maximal levels.

>>> Lactate Threshold + VO2max

 

Focus Block 3 = Race-Specific

Emphasis on 5K-specific training while all other variables are maintained.

>>> 5K Race-Specific Endurance + Economy

5K Training Plans

Faster times from the 5K to the marathon are not just the result of training more or harder. Start training with the non-linear periodization method used by professional athletes and elite coaches.

You can choose 5K training plans from 4 levels or have one custom made for you.

Elevate your aerobic capacity (VO2max)
Boost your lactate threshold/tolerance
Increase your neuromuscular power
Upgrade your fatigue resistance
Improve your running economy

5K Beginner

8-week plan
3 running days/week
10 miles/week (16 km/week)

5K Intermediate

8-week plan
3 - 5 running days/week
20 miles/week (32 km/week)

5K Advanced

8-week plan
4 - 6 running days/week
30 miles/week (48 km/week)

5K Pre-Elite

8-week plan
5 - 7 running days/week
40 miles/week (64 km/week)

5K Custom

Do you prefer a plan handcrafted for you?

See more details...