How to run a 5K if you’re overweight

Anybody can take up 5k running. Besides keeping you fit, it helps you to lose weight. If you are an overweight person, then it may be a little harder for you to take up running, but it is not impossible.

You can start with exercises that do not impact too much on your joints, knees, back, and ankles.

Try to lose some weight and improve your fitness so that you will be able to run. Before you start running, you have to consider a few things, as mentioned below.

The Important Things to Consider for 5K

  1. Consult your Doctor: If you are an overweight person, you need to consult your doctor before you start running. Be honest with your doctor, and do not hide any health issues with him. Being safe is always better than being sorry later. Undergoing a full physical assessment is essential.

Health issues to be checked:

  • Kidney related problems
  • Blood Pressure and history of the heart condition
  • Joint problems, (such as arthritis, etc.)
  • Lung disease, asthma, and any other respiratory diseases
  • Current medications
  • Pertinent issues in medical history

Once you get a confirmation from your doctor, you can start your running.

  • Proper Running Shoes: While running, always wear the right fitting shoes. Ill-fitting shoes can cause knee pain, tendonitis, shin splints, Achilles, and other injuries. Go to a sports store where they will guide you through buying shoes according to your running gait and foot type.

  • Proper Running Clothing: There are technical clothes specially designed for runners. This gear fits you well, and they are comfortable. It also works in your budget. Compression gear is helpful for an overweight runner. This fabric is lightweight and pulls moisture away from your skin. It also provides extra support. This prevents swelling in the arms and legs, and it also reduces muscle soreness after your run. Underarms and inner thighs are vulnerable to overweight runners. Compression gear also prevents chaffing, which causes raw skin and rashes, which is very painful.

  • Proper Intake of Water: Be well hydrated. Drink plenty of water before, during, and after your run or workout.

  • Be Motivated: Be motivated and don’t compare yourself to others. Remember, all may not be supportive, so ignore negative people. Focus on yourself and improve your running gradually and according to your ability. Set a realistic goal for yourself, such that you are able to achieve it. Set one goal at a time. Once you reach your first goal, and then go for the next.

How To Run A 5K If Youre Overweight

 

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5K Training Strategy for an Overweight Runner

  1. Walk: To become a runner, you should start your exercise by walking. Walking is the perfect step to start. This also helps you to lose weight without any injuries because it is a low impact exercise. Start your walk with 15 to 20 minutes of walking at a stretch 3 to 4 times a week in the beginning till you reach the stage where you can walk for 50 to 60 minutes continuously without any difficulty.

  • Run/Walk: Once you get comfortable walking, you can start with run/walk segments. Walk briskly for 10 minutes, by which heart rate goes up, and blood flows to your working muscles. Then run for 20 to 30 seconds and walk for 20 to 30 seconds. Repeat this session for 15 to 20 minutes. Once you get comfortable with 30 seconds of run/walk, increase it to 90 seconds. Later you can increase it to 2 minutes. Likewise, keep on increasing the time until you reach the stage where you can run/walk for 20 minutes without huffing and puffing.

  • Cardio Training: Cardio Training is essential for a runner. It helps you to lose weight without injuries. Cardio is a low impact exercise. It allows you to burn your extra fat and makes it easier to run. Cycling, elliptical, swimming, rowing, yoga, and dance are some of the cardio exercises one can take up.

  • Strength Training: Strength training helps you to build up strength and endurance. It prevents injuries and helps you to lose weight. Plank, bicycle crunches, side plank, glute bridge lift, and leg lift are some of the strength training exercises you can undertake.

  • Listen to your Body: Feeling muscle soreness after the workout or run is natural. It is essential to listen to your body. Slow down if you feel anyone of the following:
  • Vomiting
  • Vertigo or Dizziness
  • Losing balance
  • Intense pain in the chest
  • Severe joint or muscle pain
  • Heart palpitations
  • Nausea

  • Recovery or Rest: In order to improve your training, recovery is essential. If you are a beginner, keep every alternate day as a rest day. If you need it, you can take more time to rest, and if you don’t want to take a whole day as rest, you can do a little bit of cardio. However, stick to your plan.

  • Eat Healthy Food: Consume a fair amount of lean protein, carbs, and good fat. Lean protein avoids cravings and also helps in maintaining the consistency in blood sugar. If you consume proteins at breakfast, you have a lesser desire for junk food in the day. Lean protein such as eggs, chicken, beef, nuts, and raw cheese should be an integral part of your diet. Avoid sugar content foods such as processed foods, sweets, and aerated drinks. Unhealthy foods increase fat in your body as well as your weight, and it also causes cardiovascular diseases, type II diabetes, etc.

  • Running Plan for an Overweight Runner: Start your run/walk with less time and less speed and gradually increase it until you can run for 20 to 30 minutes at a comfortable and effortless speed.

Week One – Plan for an Overweight Runner

  • Monday: Run for 2 minutes and walk for 2 min. Repeat this at least six times
  • Tuesday: Rest day
  • Wednesday: Strength training
  • Thursday: Rest day
  • Friday: Run for 2 minutes and walk for 2 minutes. Repeat this for eight times
  • Saturday: Rest day
  • Sunday: Run for 2 minutes and walk for 1 minute. Repeat this for six times

Week Two – Plan for an Overweight Runner

  • Monday: Run for 2 minutes and walk for 1 minute. Repeat this eight times
  • Tuesday: Rest day
  • Wednesday: Strength training
  • Thursday: Rest day
  • Friday: Run for 2 minutes and walk for 1 minute. Repeat this ten times
  • Saturday: Rest day
  • Sunday: Run for 2 minutes and walk for 1 minute. Repeat this eight times

Week Three – Plan for an Overweight Runner

  • Monday: Run for 3 minutes and walk for 2 minutes. Repeat this six times
  • Tuesday: Rest day
  • Wednesday: Strength training
  • Thursday: Rest day
  • Friday: Run for 3 minutes and walk for 2 minutes. Repeat this eight times
  • Saturday: Rest day
  • Sunday: Run for 3 minutes and walk for 1 minute. Repeat this six times

Week Four – Plan for an Overweight Runner

  • Monday: Run for 5 minutes and walk for 3 minutes. Repeat this three times
  • Tuesday: Rest day
  • Wednesday: Strength training
  • Thursday: Rest day
  • Friday: Run for 5 minutes and walk for 3 minutes. Repeat this four times
  • Saturday: Rest day
  • Sunday: Run for 5 minutes and walk for 3 minutes. Repeat this five times

Week Five – Plan for an Overweight Runner

  • Monday: Run for 5 minutes and walk for 2 minutes. Repeat this five times
  • Tuesday: Rest day
  • Wednesday: Strength training
  • Thursday: Rest day
  • Friday: Run for 5 minutes and walk for 2 minutes. Repeat this five times
  • Saturday: Rest day
  • Sunday: Run for 5 minutes and walk for 1 minute. Repeat this four times

Week Six – Plan for an Overweight Runner

  • Monday: Run for 5 minutes and walk for 1 minute. Repeat this four times
  • Tuesday: Rest day
  • Wednesday: Strength training
  • Thursday: Rest day
  • Friday: Run for 5 minutes and walk for 1 minute. Repeat this five times
  • Saturday: Rest day
  • Sunday: Run for 7 minutes and walk for 2 minutes. Repeat this three times

Week Seven – Plan for an Overweight Runner

  • Monday: Run for 7 minutes and walk for 2 minutes. Repeat this three times
  • Tuesday: Rest day
  • Wednesday: Strength training
  • Thursday: Rest day
  • Friday: Run for 7 minutes and walk for 2 minutes. Repeat this three times
  • Saturday: Rest day
  • Sunday: Run for 10 minutes and walk for 3 minutes. Repeat this two times

Week Eight – Plan for an Overweight Runner

  • Monday: Run for 10 minutes and walk for 3 minutes. Repeat this two times
  • Tuesday: Rest day
  • Wednesday: Run for 12 minutes and walk for 3 minutes. Repeat this two times
  • Thursday: Rest day
  • Friday: Run for 20 minutes at a comfortable and slow speed
  • Saturday: Rest day
  • Sunday: Race day

Remember every step you take while walking and running is one step closer to improving your self-image, health, and well-being. It’s not a competition between you and everyone else, it’s a competition between you vs. you. Switch on the music, run at a comfortable speed, be oblivious of everyone else, and enjoy your run.

For more motivation and support, check out my other website, Half Marathon For Beginners. Even if you’re not ready for a half marathon, I give great advice on motivation and what to do if you have a mental block against running. Here are four articles I recommend that you read:

How to run when you hate running! 5 key strategies to develop a love for running!

You Vs. You – who will win?

How to run one mile when your out of shape?

Why is running so hard?


How To Run A 5K If Youre Overweight

 

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