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Are you ready to take on the challenge of running a 20 minute 5k in just 10 weeks? Then try this 20-minute 5k training plan! Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced runner looking to improve your time, this training plan is designed to help you reach your goal of running a 20-minute 5K.

With a combination of steady runs, interval training, and rest days, this plan will help you build endurance, improve your speed, and increase your overall fitness.

So lace up your running shoes and let’s get started!

Week 1

Mon: 30 minutes steady run

Wed: 3 x 1k with 400m jog recovery

Fri: 30 minutes steady run

Sun: 40 minutes steady run

Week 2

Mon: 35 minutes steady run

Wed: 4 x 800m with 400m jog recovery

Fri: 35 minutes steady run

Sun: 45 minutes steady run with hills

Week 3

Mon: 40 minutes steady run

Wed: 5 x 600m with 400m jog recovery

Fri: 40 minutes steady run

Sun: 50 minutes steady run

Week 4

Mon: 45 minutes steady run

Wed: 6 x 400m with 400m jog recovery

Fri: 45 minutes steady run

Sun: 55 minutes steady run with hills

Week 5 | Recovery week | No intervals

Wed: 50 minutes steady run

Fri: 50 minutes steady run

Sun: 60 minutes steady run

Week 6

Mon: 55 minutes steady run

Wed: 8 x 300m with 400m jog recovery

Fri: 55 minutes steady run

Sun: 65 minutes steady run with hills

Week 7

Mon: 60 minutes steady run

Wed: 10 x 200m with 400m jog recovery

Fri: 60 minutes steady run

Sun: 70 minutes steady run

Week 8

Mon: 65 minutes steady run

Wed: 12 x 150m with 400m jog recovery

Fri: 65 minutes steady run

Sun: 75 minutes steady run with hills

Week 9 | Recovery Week | No Intervals

Wed: 70 minutes steady run

Fri: 70 minutes steady run

Sun: 80 minutes steady run

Week 10 | Race Week

Wed: 75 minutes steady run

Fri: 75 minutes steady run

Sun: Race day!

Interval sessions

  • Adjust your pace depending on the distance.
  • Try to hold around 75 – 90% perceived effort.
  • Hold a steady pace throughout the interval.
  • Aim for a similar time for each interval during a session.

The ultimate goal is to be holding race pace or slightly faster during the intervals by week 8. Don’t worry about hitting race pace in the intervals in the first 3 – 4 weeks.

Intervals help with speed endurance and teach your body how to hold a steady sustainable pace. For this reason, they are a CRITICAL part of the training plan.

20min 5k race pace by various distances

  • 1k – 4:00
  • 800m – 3:12
  • 600m –  2: 24
  • 500m – 2:00
  • 400 – 1:36
  • 200 – 48s
  • 100 – 24s

Listen to your body

Be careful and take heed of how your body and legs are feeling. Feel free to move the sessions around to different days if you feel you need to. Pushing your body harder than it can recover effectively is NOT a recipe to complete a 5K in 20 mins in 10 weeks. LISTEN TO YOUR BODY!

Looking for your next challenge?

I hope this 20min 5k training plan serves you well. If it does and you want to push yourself further, prefer going longer, or just need another challenge after this one then consider checking out this blog about how I trained to get down to a 45min 10k.


Always consult your GP before undertaking any form of weight loss, fitness, or exercise.

Michael Duffy
Michael Duffy

Fitness, health, and outdoor enthusiast! 2 decade of experience training for, and competing in different sports. Boxer, runner, road cyclist, triathlete, and XC mountain biker. More about me here.

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