Colour5K 2019 running tips for beginners

With only weeks to go until the Headway Essex Colour5K (29 June to be precise!) we appreciate that the Colour5K could be the first time you’ve run 5km in a while or ever! So, we’ve pulled together a few handy tips to help you prepare.

Getting you started

Don’t worry about how fast you can run; just remember the Colour5K is all about having fun with colour!
But, if you are looking to improve your endurance, you’ll need to build on your aerobic base first. We’re quite a fan of the NHS Couch to 5K plan, which is great run/walk routine that gradually builds-up your ability to run a 5K. It doesn’t matter if you’ve never run before or if you just want to become more active, the plan is a free and easy way of preparing ahead of the day!

You could also participate in your local parkrun, these are free, weekly, 5km timed runs around the country. For example, there’s a great one at Colchester Castle Park. As with the Colour5K, everyone is encouraged to join in and run at their own pace. You will need to register first though at

Your pre-Colour5K routine

On the day itself, Personal Trainer Matt Brinkley, will be leading all our wonderful Colour5K participants through a good warm-up routine. But, in preparing to run 5K ahead of the event, what warm-up exercises should you be introducing?
You’ll want to start introducing dynamic stretches before you run, including walking lunges, high knees to chest and straight-leg kicks to really stretch those hamstrings. Why is this so important? Well, it can significantly reduce the likelihood of an injury and strengthen your muscles. Stretching should last for around 10 minutes, after which you can either start with a brisk walk or a comfortable jogging pace, depending on your current fitness level.
Of course, you might want to walk the Colour5K, which is absolutely fine, but you’ll still want to do some stretching before you set off!
Don’t forget, it’s equally as important to stretch after your run. This NHS blog on how to stretch after a run has some fantastic images to show you how to do each stretch.

Buying the right gear

If you’re not a regular runner, you could always borrow some running gear, or just wear some loose cotton shorts or trousers and trainers.
Don’t forget though, at the Colour5K, you’ll get absolutely covered in coloured powder paint! But, no need to worry, as we provide a bright white Colour5K T-Shirt (in a variety of sizes) that’s waiting to be showered in colour! And best of all, it’s yours to keep…
The best tip of all though, is to enjoy it! We look forward to seeing you there and giving you your vibrant Colour5K medal as you cross the finish line.

If you haven’t already booked your place, register today at

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