Legendary Australian running coach Percy Cerutty once said, “You only grow as a human being if you’re outside your comfort zone.” That’s 5K training in a nutshell. Because to master the 5K, you can’t just run distance, goal-pace intervals and a tempo run or two. Instead, you’ll have to schedule workouts that target every aspect of running fitness.
A fast 5K requires the speed and strength of a miler combined with the endurance of a marathoner. You can achieve that by performing a wide variety of fast-paced workouts—some that will certainly take you outside your comfort zone. The result will be an upgrade in your all-around running fitness and, quite possibly, a new personal record (PR). Over the following pages we’ll dissect each piece of the preparation process and explain how it all comes together on the way to your fastest 5K.