Running is an inexpensive and flexible way to keep a New Year's resolution to get more active or lose a few pounds. The DC area is lucky to have great outdoor running options and plenty of events to train toward if you need a deadline to help you meet your goal.
The Mayor Clinic offers a free online training schedule developed by Olympian Jeff Galloway to get you 5K run ready in just seven weeks, even if you are a beginner. A 5K run is 3.1 miles.
"Don't be daunted by the distance. A 5K run is a great distance for a beginner, and you can prepare for a 5K run in just two months," according to the Mayo Clinic website.
With the training schedule in-hand, you can pick a local race seven or eight weeks in the future and start working toward your goal.
Here's a list of several local 5K races that might be interesting to you:
- Feb. 23 Have a Heart for Hoffman-Boston Elementary School 5K (Arlington, Va.)
- March 2 EmpoweRun 5K (Washington, DC)
- March 2 Bright Beginnings 5K (Washington, DC)
- March 24 Chris4Life Scope it Out 5K Run/Walk for Colon Cancer Awareness (Washington, DC)
- March 24 W&OD Trail 5K (Falls Church, Va.)
- April 5 Crystal City 5K Fridays (Arlington, Va.)
- May 12 2013 National Police Week 5K (Washington, DC)
Or if you want to train for a longer race:
- March 9 The Georgetown 10 Miler (Washington, DC)
- March 9 Four Courts Four Miler (Arlington, Va.)
- March 10 St. Patrick's Day 8K (Washington, DC)
- May 4 Run for the Children 8K (Fairfax, Va.)
And if you need a little companionship to make sure you put in the miles, local running and fitness shops often have group running options each week. PACERS in Fairfax City offers long runs every Saturday.