As captain of Kaiser Permanente’s half marathon and 5K team, I always tell our runners that it’s a good idea to get a routine into place when you start training for a 5K or half marathon. When you have a regular, predictable plan, it’s easier to fit running into your schedule.
If you already run regularly, then it’s just a case of ramping up gradually to prepare you for the race. If you’re new to running, start by running a mile or two several times a week and work up from there.
I run four to five days a week, and try to do 3 to 5 miles each time. On weekdays, I usually stick to 3-mile runs and go during my lunch break or after work with a co-worker or the Kaiser Permanente San Francisco running group. Since I can only fit in shorter runs during the week, I try to do one or two longer runs on the weekends.
If you have friends who also run, think about forming a running group. Better yet, train together for the Kaiser Permanente Half Marathon and 5K!
You can also join the regular Fun Runs held at Sports Basement. Runs leave from the Presidio store on Tuesdays and from the Bryant Street store on Wednesdays, always at 6:30 p.m. If you live in the East Bay, the Berkeley Sports Basement store has fun runs on Thursday nights at 6:30.
One good way to increase your motivation is to run another 5K between now and late January. A good one is the low-key Crissy Field Fun Run, held every Saturday at 9 a.m. I love running 5Ks because they’re only three miles long and even if you’re a beginner, you can walk the race. Finishing a race will give you a feeling of accomplishment and exhilaration that will carry over into your training.