training for a 5K race in Seattle to prevent foot and ankle injuriesYou’ve decided you want to run a 5K! So why not start with Green Lake here in Seattle. I know the perfect race for you. The Foot and Ankle Center of Lake City is sponsoring the upcoming “I Can and I Will” Run at Green Lake on Sunday, October 16th.

We’re thrilled to sponsor this race to help support families who get their kids treated at Seattle Children’s.

If you’re new to running, a 5K is great goal to work toward—at just 3.1 miles it’s something you can effectively train for in just a couple of months without injuring your feet or ankles.

Since your goal will be to run this race at Green Lake, this iconic Seattle Park is the perfect place to start training.

3 Easy to Follow Training Schedules for a 5K Race in Seattle

The key to prevent injuries while training is to build up your running slowly so your body can adapt. Fortunately, we found three easy-to-follow running schedules to help you do just that. They are listed in order for rank beginner, beginner, and advanced beginner.  

Runningfastr – Rank Beginner

Runningfastr provides what they call a couch to 5K running plan for beginners. This plan is 8 weeks, so it’s ideal if you’re a rank beginner.

Keep in mind that you should always check with your doctor before you start any new physical activity program, including those in this blog.

Mayo Clinic - Beginner

This iconic clinic has a 7 week training schedule for beginners who want to run a 5K. Some of the highlights of this schedule are:

  • A mix of running, walking, and resting
  • You can adapt this for a 5K walk instead
  • On your days off you can try water running, cycling, or rowing
  • Discusses a training tool called the Magic Mile

Verywell Fit – Advanced Beginner

The Verywell Fit website has a 6 week training plan for advanced beginners. They suggest this for folks who have some level of fitness. Some of the things they recommend are:

  • Cross training, speed intervals, and rest days
  • Evaluating your progress
  • Do your training at the same time of day as the run you’ll be doing
  • Test different types of snacks to see which ones give you the energy you’ll need.
  • Train in the shoes you’ll be wearing during the race.

Buying the Right Running Shoes for Your Feet

Perhaps you have a pair of running shoes collecting dust in the back of your closet and you’re wondering if those will work for this run. The answer is maybe. Nothing is more important then wearing the right running shoes to prevent foot and ankle injuries. If those shoes still fit you and have very little mileage on them, then they may work well.

But there’s a lot more to buying shoes than finding a new pair off the rack. A lot of tennis shoes these days look like you could run in them, but they lack the stability and support you need.

Here are my top tips for buying running shoes:

  • Go to a reputable running or athletic store.
  • Replace the insert with an over-the-counter insert like Redithotics.
  • Make sure to take your custom orthotics with you when you purchase new shoes.
  • Get your feet measured.
  • Buy new shoes every 500 miles.
  • Test your shoes before you buy them. Here’s how!

Learn more about buying running shoes here.

Buy Socks that Wick Away Moisture

Another important piece of running gear are your socks. Avoid cotton socks and instead, buy socks that wick away moisture. Many of the best running socks are made from materials like polyester, nylon, acrylic, or polypropylene. Try Balega No Show Socks for Men or Women or Darn Tough Vertex Ultra Light.

Do Warmups and Cool Downs Before and After You Run

While you might feel tempted to just go out and started running without a warmup, don’t do it. You’re much more likely to injure yourself. Most of us are familiar with the calf stretch we see so many people do before a run. While these are important, some of the best warm-ups for running are Dynamic Warm-Ups. If you’re going to do calf stretches be sure to hold each stretch as least 30 secs or more.

After you run, down forget to take some time to cool down as well.

How to Fuel Up for a 5K Race in Seattle

Don’t run on an empty stomach. Your muscles need energy to help you run. Eat an apple or banana with some peanut or almond butter, a hard-boiled egg on a piece of toast, or a have a smoothy with a good balance of fruits, veggies, and some protein like an avocado. Eat about 90 minutes beforehand. Whatever, you eat make sure it’s food that agrees with you.

Get Hydrated and Stay Hydrated

Two hours before your run drink 16 ounces of water. Then drink another 6-8 ounces fifteen minutes before the run. Be sure to drink plenty of water after your run as well.

Tips for Getting Race Ready If You Suffer From Heel Pain or Plantar Fasciitis

prevent heel pain before your 5K raceHaving heel pain or plantar fasciitis is no fun!  Particularly if your heart is set on running a 5K race. If you're experiencing problems now or if you've had them in the past and are concerned about a flare up, there's good news! There's plenty you can do to dramatically reduce your heel pain or prevent it from coming back. 

One key to reducing your chance for a flare-up has already been mentioned. Building up your run time slowly--no more than 10% increase per week. The training schedules above will really help you. 

In addition, I've written a book called "The Complete Guide to Stopping Heel Pain in Runners". Get your copy today to make sure your ready for your race!


Need Orthotics for a 5K Race in Seattle, Washington? Request an Appointment Now

You'd like to participate in a 5K race in Seattle, but you're prone to heel pain or plantar fasciitis. Contact us today to get a pair of custom orthotics to see you through the race. Complete the contact form on this page or call our office at 206-368-7000 to schedule an appointment with Dr. Berg.

Most new patients are seen within 1-2 week's time. During your initial visit, Dr. Berg will spend up to 30 minutes getting to know you, your podiatry complaints, and your goals so that he can recommend the treatment best meets your needs. Don’t wait—contact us today.

North Seattle Foot & Ankle Specialist Dr. Rion Berg offers compassionate podiatry care for all foot and ankle problems to those living in Seattle Washington and the surrounding areas. Call us today at 206-368-7000 for an immediate appointment or request an appointment online.

Dr. Rion Berg
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A podiatrist in North Seattle treating families for over 40 years.
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