What Is The Perfect 5K Pace For You?

Running your first 5k is all about finishing the race in one piece without needing to rest. It’s a sporting event which demands that you have the fitness levels to keep going for 3.1 miles, so the your5k pace is a very important factor.


The 5k pace you choose to use can be decided on from early on in your training. There are 2 main ways you can do this: –

#1  Using the rate of perceived exertion scale (RPE)

The RPE scale is a way of measuring the intensity or effort you are putting into your training. It’s a measure from 1 to 10 of the level of the discomfort you are feeling.

It works like this, the harder it feels, the higher the score. If you’re feeling very tired and need to stop, this would equate to a 10 on the RPE scale.

If you decide to use the RPE scale to set your 5k pace, then you need to be working to a level of intensity of around 6 or 7 out of 10. This pace is just above average, you will be sweating slightly, but can comfortably hold a conversation.

#2  Monitoring your pace.

If you’d like to monitor the speeds you’re running at, you’ll need to use a GPS system or an advanced pedometer which gives readings of distances and your pace per mile. After a few runs, you’ll be able to work out a comfortable running pace and time yourself completing a mile. This now becomes your 5k pace.

This speed usually gets a little faster as you get fitter.

On race day, you should run at your usual 5k pace so you know how you’ll feel, without being carried along with the crowd at the start.

If you want to get up from the couch to 5k running as quickly as possible, ‘5k Training For Beginners’ is a great choice, ideal for beginners that want to learn how to train to run a 5k in the shortest possible time. Click here for more details – Training For a 5K

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