Top Tips for Running Your Best 5K Race

Lisa Reichmann and Julie Sapper | Published on July 13, 2016

Updated on November 4, 2019

Top Tips for Running Your Best 5K Race

JulielisaNew to the world of running? We’ve got you covered. You have two months until the Prevent Cancer 5k Walk/Run—that means plenty of time to get ready to take on the race. Running coaches Lisa Reichmann and Julie Sapper of Run Farther & Faster are giving you their top tips for running your best 5k. Start training and then come enjoy a fun and active day at Nationals Park in Washington, D.C. on Sunday, September 25 at the Prevent Cancer 5k Walk/Run and Health Fair.

  1. Acclimate: Inevitably, when training in the summer, you will be facing hot and humid temperatures. Run at least two times per week outdoors, preferably when it’s sunny, to adjust to running in the heat and yield greater training benefits on race day. Do not be surprised if your pace is significantly slower during those outdoor runs.
  2. Hydrate: Drink regularly, and use your urine as an indicator to whether you are sufficiently hydrated (it should be clear and copious). Consistent hydration improves both performance and recovery.
  3. Rest: Rest and recovery days are as important as training days! Avoid cramming in your miles on weekends only and instead run consistently throughout the week to ensure you have sufficient rest between each run. Rest repairs the micro-tears in your muscles caused by training.
  4. Fuel: Proper nutrition is essential to recovery. Within 20 to 30 minutes of finishing a run, eat a healthy protein/carb snack (or meal, if it’s mealtime) to fuel recovery and minimize hunger later in the day.
  5. Stretch: Before a run, be sure to do a few minutes of dynamic stretching, such as a brisk walking warm-up, a few jumping jacks, or a running drill, such as butt kicks or high knees, to warm up. Following a run, do a few minutes of static stretching and/or foam rolling to avoid tightness.
  6. Appreciate: During training and racing, you will inevitably feel tired or discouraged at some point. If this happens to you, take a moment to appreciate that you have the opportunity to run for an important cause—helping millions of people prevent or detect cancer early. This appreciation will undoubtedly pull your body and mind out of the slump.

Start training now and by September 25, the 5k will be a breeze! Click here to register as an individual or start a team to raise more money for research, education, outreach and advocacy to help Stop Cancer Before It Starts!™

About the Coaches

Lisa Reichmann and Julie Sapper, co-founders of Run Farther & Faster, coach runners of all levels locally through their group training programs in Montgomery County, Maryland, and nationwide through their virtual coaching services.  For more tips or information, find them on Facebook or at email them at


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