Training for Your 5K Personal Best

The 5K is a beautiful distance.

Anna P. (42) works for a major shoe brand and is the mother of two children. After her second baby, she didn’t exercise much for three years. Little sleep, little time, no energy. Because Anna continued to eat chocolate and desserts, she never lost her pregnancy kilos. Three years after her second baby, she weighed 6 kilos (13 lbs) more than before her pregnancies.

One day she decided: I want to lose some weight and I want to get fit again.

She got herself a good pair of running shoes and ran 2 or 3 times a week. Her motivation was great, and her discipline did the rest: she quickly lost three kilos (6.5 lbs) and built up her distances from 1 kilometer to 5 kilometers. She’ll never forget the day she ran her first 5K race. Her children, her husband, and her mother were at the finish line, and the medal - in the shape of a gold 5 - hangs in the hall among the photos of her family. The local newspaper posted the results and times of all runners. She was proud that at 31:37 she left four more participants behind her. Her new goal: to run 5 kilometers in under half an hour.

Then, running became a struggle. She used to get better almost weekly and noticed that the improvement was easy to achieve. But now, she’s been stuck on the same level. Her weight remained the same, and so did her pace. A friend recommended trying Stryd.

“Are you crazy, that’s for you, because you run marathons. That’s nothing for a snail like me,” she said.

“The device just looks at your current level and then gives you tips to get better. It doesn’t matter whether you train for a 5K within half an hour or whether you want to qualify for the Olympics.”

Her frustration that she was no longer improving outweighed her hesitation to run with a power meter, so she tried it. Her power meter quickly taught her two things: she never ran slower than her favorite pace, and she never ran faster than her comfortable speed. Because of Stryd, she started combining easy workouts (which she did in the dark because she was embarrassed of her snail pace) with more intensive intervals. She had to run wattages she didn’t think she could, but encouraged by Stryd’s personal training plan, she gave it a try anyway. And it worked. She still ran 2 or 3 times a week, but due to the variation in pace, she was now improving rapidly. She ran her second 5 kilometer race in 27:38: an improvement of 4 minutes!

Want to try for yourself?

With Stryd you can go to Events in the main menu. There, you can enter 5 kilometers. Next, enter the date of your event and how many training sessions you want to do per week. Stryd also asks which day you have the most time, on that day you will get your longest training in the plan.

Choose high volume or low volume, and your workouts are automatically added to your training calendar.

Two workouts are always a lot fun to do:
1. Do a monthly “Critical Power boost training.” That is, a 3,000-meter training session. This way, you’ll test whether your critical power has increased.

2. Run a block of at least 12 minutes every week on the wattage of your 5 kilometers. This way, you get used to this ability and you can check whether it feels good.

Want to learn more about Running Power?

Download The Fastest Way To Your Next Personal Best: Running Power eBook (with over 65+ pages of content) for free to learn simple ways you can use power to improve your running performance.

Click here to download. Enjoy the book!