Next running program: The Long Run or 8 weeks to 5K?

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  • Next running program: The Long Run or 8 weeks to 5K?

    I'm half way through From walking to running program and is not planning for next month. I see that both The Long Run and 8 weeks to 5K have similar end goal: to be able to run 30 - 40 minutes / 5K.

    So the question is how they are different in term of performance delivery while having the same end goal; and which one should I go for

    Aside from the obvious length difference (30 days vs 8 weeks), as far as I can tell, The Long Run does not have leg days, have sprints, and running days are generally less taxing (usually equal part running and walking). 8 weeks to 5K, on the other hand, has alternating leg days and running days, with more running than walking in a day. But I have no idea how the different approaches will affect the end result.

    My best guess is that The Long Run is a continuation of From walking to running while 8 weeks to 5K is meant to be a stand-alone program

    I'll be running while doing other workout as well. And my long term goal (and it can be really long I don't mind, I'm not in a hurry here) is to be able to run 10K (or 20K if I'm not dead from boredom before I finish the run).

  • #2
    Are you planning on entering any races? its that time of year that people start advertising their 5k races so if your planning on entering those then maybe 8 weeks to 5k might be better however if your just trying to lengthen your running from what you do now and aren't entering races for a while yet The Long run might be better. Just remember the Long run is 1 month while 8 weeks to 5k is 2 months. Remember that 5k is 3.14 miles (its what high school cc meets are over here). The reason I ask is because most racers alternate distance speed and leg strength days.


    • #3
      voanh99 I would agree with your assessment that the main difference is pace. If you think you can reach 40 minutes in 1 month then go for it, if not use the other one. There are differences in the technique of using sprint sets versus strength set to improve running capabilities but both are good. I would look at the time frame and your goals and pick from there.


      • #4
        I think both will allow you to shoot for 5k at the end. I'd modify the programs by doing full body days instead of the leg strength ones or hiit workouts instead of the sprints Add stretching/yoga and you've got yourself a well rounded program!

        Lastly, I'd say if you are kind of fit (what your badges suggest) go for the long run, but if you were struggling with from walking to running, the 8 week one may be the safer option.


        • #5
          Thank you all for your advice.

          DustyQOTF No I'm not entering any races so I'm not in a hurry Just trying to improve my running

          Azercord I'll do less thing next month to (try to) focus more on running so (I guess / I hope) The Long Run is do-able

          EricThePersistent Yes I do stretching / yoga as part of my routine already so I guess that will help.

          Okay now I'm more inclined towards The Long Run


          • #6
            Wait until the last week of the current program and consider how you are doing. If you are fit enough, you can acutally even go for a completely different approach.

            I go running every other day and do my other programs independently from that.
            I startet with 3x10min- with 5min walking in between. That was hard but doable. Then I increased running time every 2-3 runs. Up to 3x15 with 3min walking. And now I work on 45min with only 1x walking and then 45min without rest. From there on I´ll vary with sprints, longer runs, faster runs...

            I am quite overweight, starting at 100kg/1,63m (220lb/5`4``). That limits running and takes more time for muscles and tendons to adapt, so it sould be easier for everybody with less weight.


            • #7
              My problem with running is more or a mental thing than physical thing actually. I'll see by the end of the month how things are going (right now it's steady as it should, I have no problem following the program) but chances are I'll stick with a program, just so I get something to cross out by the end of the day


              • #8
                If you are looking to combat boredom while running audio books help along with programs like the Zombie, Run! app. I don't like running with music because it really doesn't do much for me but listening to a good story makes the miles fly by.


                • #9
                  That Zombie app might be able to do the trick! I'll give it a try.

                  I once walked regularly (50 minutes) with music and that worked for me, but only the fast paced songs since I could kinda like walking while dancing to the songs . Audio books probably won't work since my listening skill is very bad (I don't even listen well in my mother tongue, let alone English), and I tend to doze off while listening to something for information. Reading would definitely work but I suppose I won't be able to read while running...