Ever wondered why a 5K is called a 5K? Or how long a marathon even is?
If you’re new to running you’ve probably heard these terms before, but you may not know what they entail. So to help you get to know the (long distance) running world, below I’ve broken it down for you.
5K: A 5k is a 3.1 mile race. To run a 5k typically all you have to do is find one you’re interested in, sign up and pay the entry fee (which is around $25-$50). Keep in mind these costs can vary by race and location. All race entry fees will usually include a race shirt, a bib, a medal and discounts for other races or running apparel. A training program for a 5k is in the neighborhood of 4-8 weeks and is a great race for a beginner.
10K: The next step up from a 5k is a 10k. A 10k is a 6.2 mile race. Similar to the 5k to run a 10k you need to find a race and pay the entry fee. Race fees are generally more expensive than a 5k and can run up to $75. A training program for a 10k race is approximately 8-12 weeks.
Half Marathon: A half marathon is a 13.1 mile/21k race. Most half marathons also only require signing up and paying the entry fee, which varies from $50-$100. Prices are typically cheaper the earlier you sign up and rise as the race nears. A half marathon training plan is 12-14 weeks.
Marathon: A marathon is a 26.2 mile/42K race. While some marathons only require you to sign up, there are some that are so popular that you must enter a lottery to be able to sign up. The Boston Marathon for example requires a qualifying time to register. Marathon fees can be upwards of $200 depending on the race. Due to the distance of a marathon and to try and prevent injury a marathon training plan is about 20-24 weeks.