Whether you and your dog are looking to sign up for your local Turkey Trot, or you are searching for a fun way to get in shape, completing a 5K with your dog is a rewarding goal. No matter your fitness level, age, or abilities, you can work toward completing a 5K with your dog in just four weeks.
Before You Get Started
First things first: before starting any new exercise routine, check with your dog’s veterinarian and your physician. Once you get the all clear, set attainable goals. Will you be walking, running, biking, or completing your 5K in another way? Do you want to complete the 3.1 miles in one go or in segments? If you want to hold yourself accountable, consider training with a friend, joining a local Fit Dog Club, or enrolling in a local or virtual 5K.
Download our free 5K training plan and fitness tracker to start. We will walk you through your goals for each week and give you a printable template to track your distance and take notes on.
- Everyone has different abilities and health statuses. Make sure the priority is having fun and keeping healthy with your dog!
- Track your progress on the included tracker and take notes of how you felt each day physically and mentally
- Healthy foods and supplements can be helpful for new workout routines. Consider Pet Releaf Hip & Joint Releaf Oil and Edibites for your dog.
- Reward yourselves! Exercise should be a balanced habit you enjoy and build for life.
Week one will be all about getting outside for short, 10-minute exercises at least 3 times during the day. If you plan to run and you’re new to running, you can add a minute of jogging between every 4-5 minutes of walking. Make sure you and your dog are on the same page in terms of pace, speed, and comfort. Check-in with your dog (and yourself) and reward yourselves after.
Week 2 is a good time to check the ingredients in the foods both you and your dog eat to make sure you’re properly fueled and getting balanced nutrition. Remember to check with your vet and your doctor before changing your dog’s or your own diet. This week is also about building up endurance. Remember: exercise should be fun, and at this point, distance should be a priority over speed. Try to go 2-3 minutes longer every day. If you’re able to complete a mile, start adding a quarter of a mile each day throughout the week. Add in some strength conditioning with easy pushups and situps at home. Make sure to give yourself some rest and time to stretch.
The goal in week 3 is to make it to 2.5 miles, whether you’re walking, running, biking, or doing a combination! If you live somewhere where it’s possible, walk or jog your dog to your favorite park or coffee shop. Enjoy a cup of tea or a game of fetch before finishing your exercise. If you have friends with pets, consider inviting them to join you and work toward achieving 3.1 miles together. If you feel up to it, you can challenge yourself to a slightly faster speed each day.
By the end of week 4, you should be able to complete 3.1 miles. If you still aren’t at that point, don’t worry! Everyone progresses at different rates and has different abilities and the most important thing is to make sure both you and your dog are healthy. If you are at 3.1 miles, see if you can walk or job at a slightly quicker pace. Consider enrolling in a local (dog-friendly) or virtual 5K to meet new people and show off your progress!
Staying Healthy With Your Dog During 5K Training
Make sure to track your miles each day in our downloadable 5K planner. Check for signs of discomfort in your dog and consider Hip & Joint Oil, Hip & Joint Edibites, or a topical to soothe worn-down paw pads.
Remember to stay hydrated and prioritize fun and safety. Share your photos and updates by tagging us on social!