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Digital Subscriptions > Healthy Food Guide > February 2018 > Your complete training plan for a BIG RACE

Your complete training plan for a BIG RACE

Thinking of running a 5K, 10K or half marathon? Setting a goal to complete a race is a great way to stay motivated and improve. To help you train, we asked three of the UK’s top coaches to share their eight-week plans. By Hannah Ebelthite

READY steady RUN!

SO YOU’VE BEEN RUNNING FOR A WHILE, you’ve got the bug and seen the benefits – but it’s time for a new challenge. Maybe you want to raise money for a good cause. Perhaps you’d like to get a little faster, increase the distance you can comfortably run, or maybe you’re stuck in a running rut and need a goal to motivate you again. Signing up to take part in a race is a sure way to reach new heights of fitness as well as enjoyment. From the smallest local club race to national events, the support and camaraderie make for a day to remember.

Whatever your race distance, a training plan is a must. Here, three of the UK’s top coaches, all working at GB level, share their training plans for three popular distances, with advice for getting the most out of your schedule.


Your 5K training schedule has been devised for you by Andy Baddeley. Andy has competed at two Olympic games over 1500m for Team GB, and holds the world record for parkrun (weekly timed 5K runs). Since retiring from professional running at the end of 2016, Andy has worked as a full-time running coach.

RUNNING SHOULD BE FUN AND FEEL REWARDING, Andy believes. ‘Most beginners start with 5K as a distance goal to cover, but that doesn’t mean it’s not a good racing goal, too,’ he says. ‘There’s always a faster time or a different terrain to try out (on a track or on the trails instead of a road, say). This training plan doesn’t specify pace, so you can adapt it to your speed or experience.’

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About Healthy Food Guide

Find out what really works for weight loss with our portion guide special - and say goodbye to that belly fat. Meet the medical experts now focusing on nutrition, and try our 32 heart-friendly recipes. We show you how to spot or prevent a mini stroke (it could save a life), and take your running to a new level with our complete guide to training for a race. We've also got vegan comfort food covered, plus pancakes and Valentine's treats, and help you look as good on the outside as you feel on the inside, with professional tips for beauty on a budget.