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What Is a Realistic 5K Goal for Me? (Read 116 times)

    I'm leaning towards focusing on longer races but I still want to do some more 5K races.  How much can I hope to take off my time of 20:18 that I got last week in the only 5K race I've ever done?  Again, I'm not at this time going to solely focus on the 5K distance.

     

    Info:

    47 years old

    340 miles ran since March when I got back into running after a many year lay-off

    I've spent the last 8 years doing high level road cycling

    I'm 5'7" and weigh 152 pounds.  I have a fairly muscular upper body as I've done weights/strength training for about as long as I've been cycling seriously.

     

    Thanks.

    Personal Records:

    5K - 20:18 ran in August 2019

    10K - 41:15 ran in September 1990

    paul2432


      Is this a long term goal or a short term goal?  Are you willing to lose 10-15 pounds?

       

      Short term sub 20:00 is an obvious goal.  Long term sub 18:00 is I think is doable but will take a lot of work.

       

      Short term = next six months

      Long term = 2-3 years

      Tchuck


        Just with race experience and smart racing you will break 20. You are also averaging less than 20 miles per weel which is considered pretty low mileage. If you get that up to 30 miles per week and run an extra 1-2 times per week with more structured training, I think 18 min is realistic within 6 months. Your progress will halt if you stick with your 3 days per week and your low mileage.

        H-WAVE - Helping Athletes Reduce Pain and Recover Faster

        Nimmals


          You'll run 21:12 at your next 5k. Good luck!

          wcrunner2


          I'm out of ideas

            20:00 should probably be your short term goal.  Sorry to but a damper on some of the other comments, but I think 18:00 is unrealistic unless you have a lot of hidden talent.  If you were 20 years younger I'd say it's a possibility, but not at 47.  Take what you can and look at sub-19:00 as a long term goal.

             

            2020 Races:

                 05/16/20 - 3DATF 50K

                 07/11/20 - Ethan Allen 6-Hour

              Is this a long term goal or a short term goal?  Are you willing to lose 10-15 pounds?

               

              Short term sub 20:00 is an obvious goal.  Long term sub 18:00 is I think is doable but will take a lot of work.

               

              Short term = next six months

              Long term = 2-3 years

               

              I'd say more of a long term goal.  I'm not sure about the weight part.  I could lose some fat I’m sure but muscle would be involved as well.  I like having the functional strength from a strong upper body.  I guess I’ll have to decide which is more important to me.

               

              I have a friend who ran sub 18:00 right when he turned 50 (17:58) who also came from a cycling background.  In the back of my mind I was thinking that in the 2.5 years until I turn 50, that might be a stretch goal for me.

               

              Thanks for your comment.

              Personal Records:

              5K - 20:18 ran in August 2019

              10K - 41:15 ran in September 1990

                Just with race experience and smart racing you will break 20. You are also averaging less than 20 miles per weel which is considered pretty low mileage. If you get that up to 30 miles per week and run an extra 1-2 times per week with more structured training, I think 18 min is realistic within 6 months. Your progress will halt if you stick with your 3 days per week and your low mileage.

                 

                I know my progress would halt eventually with the three days per week running but I do think there's potential for improvement with just that amount.  I'm following the 'Run Less, Run Faster' program to a degree.  I've had to work through a few minor injury issues so I haven't been able to fully implement it yet.  I like its emphasis on quality runs.  I've been doing the tempo one but need to increase my long run.

                 

                Thanks.

                Personal Records:

                5K - 20:18 ran in August 2019

                10K - 41:15 ran in September 1990

                  20:00 should probably be your short term goal.  Sorry to but a damper on some of the other comments, but I think 18:00 is unrealistic unless you have a lot of hidden talent.  If you were 20 years younger I'd say it's a possibility, but not at 47.  Take what you can and look at sub-19:00 as a long term goal.

                   

                   

                  I would definitely take 19:00.  I’m sure gains are harder to come by as times get under 20 minutes.  I’m hoping that with the comparatively small amount of time and miles I’ve put in and still able to get 20:18, that there’s more to achieve.  I know I need seize the moment before I hit more of the downward slope.  I have noticed in the last couple of years that my cycling has declined somewhat – not by a lot – but noticeable.  That's the appeal of running now as I’ve barely started and I see far more potential for improvement at this point.

                   

                  Thanks.

                  Personal Records:

                  5K - 20:18 ran in August 2019

                  10K - 41:15 ran in September 1990

                  Nimmals


                    20:00 should probably be your short term goal.  Sorry to but a damper on some of the other comments, but I think 18:00 is unrealistic unless you have a lot of hidden talent.  If you were 20 years younger I'd say it's a possibility, but not at 47.  Take what you can and look at sub-19:00 as a long term goal.

                     

                    In 7 years with adaptaions setting in a few pounds lighter and bigger balls no reason he cant run 17:58.

                    I'm 47 and I'm getting faster in some events and I started at 35 years old. Nothing beats a huge heart and big balls.

                     

                    Look at Kevin Castille. Who is to say in a few years.

                    flavio1980


                    weight loss complainer

                      The answer is: It depends.

                       

                      If I may, I'd recommend you don't work with long term time targets. Or even short term.

                      If you instead focus on being consistent with your training and remaining injury free and then run your best possible race on race day, you will see continuous improvement for quite a while.

                      I can see you do weight training consistently, that's a great start. That will help a lot with keeping injury free, just make sure to tune it so that it's helping your running and not detrimental to it (don't do a heavy workout the same day you have running intervals).

                      If 3 days a week is as much as your body can handle, then 3 days it is. Training should however be as specific as possible, so if you do cross training, it won't help you as much as running itself. It's okay if you'd like to do cross training for fun, so long as you understand that the activities that will help the most with your running is the weight training and, well, running.

                       

                      It'd be interesting if you bumped this thread in 6 months to let us know how far you got. I'd bet at least 19:30.

                       

                      God luck!

                      PRs: 1500m 4:54.1 3K 10:34 5K 18:05 HM 1:24:25 - Up next: Chase the HM PR

                      LedLincoln


                        If I may, I'd recommend you don't work with long term time targets. Or even short term.

                        If you instead focus on being consistent with your training and remaining injury free and then run your best possible race on race day, you will see continuous improvement for quite a while.

                         

                         

                        This has been my approach. I don't really see how picking an arbitrary number and trying to force my body to it is useful.

                        Nothing so needs reforming as other people's habits.
                        - Mark Twain

                          The answer is: It depends.

                           

                          If I may, I'd recommend you don't work with long term time targets. Or even short term.

                          If you instead focus on being consistent with your training and remaining injury free and then run your best possible race on race day, you will see continuous improvement for quite a while.

                          I can see you do weight training consistently, that's a great start. That will help a lot with keeping injury free, just make sure to tune it so that it's helping your running and not detrimental to it (don't do a heavy workout the same day you have running intervals).

                          If 3 days a week is as much as your body can handle, then 3 days it is. Training should however be as specific as possible, so if you do cross training, it won't help you as much as running itself. It's okay if you'd like to do cross training for fun, so long as you understand that the activities that will help the most with your running is the weight training and, well, running.

                           

                          It'd be interesting if you bumped this thread in 6 months to let us know how far you got. I'd bet at least 19:30.

                           

                          God luck!

                           

                           

                           

                          Even though I feel that I have reached my peak with cycling, I do still enjoy it,  I especially love the high speed descents and other adrenaline producing effects that running can't really match.  I feel like although the cross-training with it uses a different muscle set than running, I'm still getting the cardio benefits.  I don't think there's any way I could be running as well as I am now if I started with no cycling base.

                           

                          As I mentioned in another thread, I'm following the 'Run Less, Run Faster' approach but am thinking of curtailing some of the cycling.  Not sure yet if I'll be able to replace with running.  I'm shooting for quality with my three runs with each week doing a tempo and long run.

                           

                          Thanks for the encouragement!

                          Personal Records:

                          5K - 20:18 ran in August 2019

                          10K - 41:15 ran in September 1990


                          Elite Jogger

                            If you can run a 20:18 5k on the mileage shown in your log then you’ve got the potential to go Sub 18 or better. It’s pretty much up to you how far you want to take it. Like I said on your other thread, add an extra 2 days easy running and be consistent and build a proper base. You mention about getting into longer distance and that’s when you’ll notice the lack of endurance if you continue with the Run Less, Run Faster approach.

                            5k - 17:53 (4/19)   10k - 37:53 (11/18)   Half - 1:23:18 (4/19)   Full - 2:50:43 (4/19)

                            Nimmals


                               

                              This has been my approach. I don't really see how picking an arbitrary number and trying to force my body to it is useful.

                               

                              Exactly, just run train, race gauge. Being new to the sport, improvement will come over time.

                                If you can run a 20:18 5k on the mileage shown in your log then you’ve got the potential to go Sub 18 or better. It’s pretty much up to you how far you want to take it. Like I said on your other thread, add an extra 2 days easy running and be consistent and build a proper base. You mention about getting into longer distance and that’s when you’ll notice the lack of endurance if you continue with the Run Less, Run Faster approach.

                                 

                                 

                                Have you really looked into the ‘Run Less, Run Faster’ program?  It very much emphasizes the long run and the endurance that comes from it.  I just haven’t been able to put it fully into practice yet as I’ve had a few injury issues that I’ve been working through and haven’t wanted to push things.  If the program is done correctly, you’re getting a long run, tempo run, and speed work every week.  It’s a bit similar to Galloway’s emphasis on only running three times per week but leaves out his, in my opinion, ineffective walk/run component.

                                 

                                I’d like to at least see how far I can get with ‘Run Less, Run Faster’ if I’m fully able to implement it.  As you mentioned, being able to run the 20:18 with my limited mileage, makes me feel that I have more potential.  I’d rather have some non-pounding cross-training through cycling than junk running miles.

                                 

                                ETA: As I mentioned in another reply, there’s very little chance that I would have been able to run 20:18 at my age with my running miles since March without the 8 years of high level cycling as a base.

                                 

                                Thanks for your input.

                                Personal Records:

                                5K - 20:18 ran in August 2019

                                10K - 41:15 ran in September 1990

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