This year, an amazing 750,000 women will be walking, jogging or running in a women-only Race for Life 5K. They'll help to raise a whopping £46 million for Cancer Research UK across 240 events. Will you be one of them?
We're here to help you every step of the way, whatever your goal for the big day.
• We're delighted to be the official training partner of Race for Life, and if you like what you read here and you'd like to try a subscription to the magazine, we'll make a £5 donation of our own to Cancer Research UK. (There's a super offer at the end of the page.)
How should I start?
If you haven't entered a Race for Life race yet, you can find out more and enter here.
Then, whether you walk or run or plan to do a bit of both, a training programme – even a very basic one – makes a huge difference. If you don't have one, there's a tried and trusted selection for walkers and runners of every speed further down the page. Unless you have serious health issues, we're assuming that you'll want to build up to jogging at least some of the way on race day.
There's further reading in our Best Beginners' Index,
Best Weight Loss Index, and Best Women's Index
- I've never run before
...the best way to start is a little jogging with walk breaks. It may feel odd, but you'll get twice as far, twice as quickly and feel a huge sense of achievement as you progress. More than half of the women in your Race for Life event will continue the run/walk routine right through to race day. Our beginner and intermediate programmes, below, all include walk breaks.
- What equipment do I need?
All you need is a properly fitted pair of shoes, a sports bra and some clothing that makes you feel good. more
- What should I eat?
Just a good all-round diet, with plenty of fluids and a slight emphasis on low-GI carbohydrate. Aim to eat 50-60% of your calories from carbohydrate, 20-25% from protein and 20-25% from fat. Only half-marathon runners need go wild with pasta. more
- Will I lose weight (please...)?
Nothing (except cross-country skiing) burns more calories per minute than running. But don't forget to eat and drink enough to exercise at your best in the first place. You'll still win out. more