Average 5k time

Just wondering what you think the average 5k time is for a 14 year old. After 1 and a half months easy training (effectively 3 recovery runs and a long run each week), I can run it in about 22 minutes and I'm wondering if this is above/below average.


  • Its a good start but you will find that you have to be patient to let the training build over a few years.

    Take yourself down to your nearest parkrun, they;re free 5ks every Saturday morning at 30+ venues. That will let you judge yourself against other people of your own age and against people of eevry other age too.


    The site is having one or two problems at the moment but keep trying over the next few days and it should be fully working again.

    If you're interested in the times of what the very best at different ages can do for 5K :


  • A time of 22:00 for a 14 year-old male gives you an age graded score of 64.5% in my books. That's pretty good, I'd say.

    I remember my first 5k - it was when I was roughly 14. I sprinted away at the start, had to stop, and almost threw up at the end. I finished in 29:31 (amazing how these things stick in your mind).

    Ah, the fallacies of youth. I thought running was so easy image

    (I wasn't a runner at that point. Not for 4 or so years after.)

    But yeah, get yourself to a parkrun. They're a great laugh (although you might not think so with half a mile to go image).
  • I would go to a parkrun, but the problem is the nearest one is about 100 miles away! 

    I was thinking of entering a 5k fun run in m local town of Crewkerne. Last years winner won in about 21 minutes so judging by that i'm fairly good.

  • I'm 14, due to turn 15 in about a month and a half and I ran 5k with strong headwind at 16:30 today. My PB is under 16:10, I don't run competitively or train to run, I'm a rower by trade. I run, maybe once a week, and its either 5k loop or short 2x1k. I'm wondering whether this is any good and considering whether I should pursue it as a second sport or whether its not worth it? Any forwards would be useful?
  • Well I'm the second best runner in my year (200 people) and I can now do a 5k in about 20:00. So yeah I would say it is pretty quick.
  • Tom if the 5K is an accurately measured one then it is a good time..............if you look at the parkrun websites you can see what the fastest time for 14 year old there is and it will give you an idea.....I would say most doing that kind of a time would be in a running club............
  • Tom 16:10 is an excellent time off of 1 run a week, depending on how good you are at rowing/how much you enjoy it Id drop it altogether and focus on the running.
  • Ok, thank you for your kind responsesimage The time was independently measured by one of my coaches who showed me the time on a stopwatch, directly after crossing the line. Without intending to sound arrogant, I actually row in the junior GB squad at J15 level so giving up rowing would be a difficult thing to do. I apologize for posting something like this, I'm by far no expert in running so wanted some opinions from the more experienced people on times etc! Thank you for your help, I've had a look at the park-run website, couldn't find a time for 14 year olds although will keep lookingimage Appreciate you taking the time to reply, I'm looking to crack 16mins by the end of May at the latest. Cheers
  • Tom........mentioned this to my son who is 15..............he said that with that time you would make the Welsh squad............image

    not sure if you would make theenglish one.but its pretty good runningimage

  • Tom............I'm surprised that your coach hasn't done something about your running......

    if he has accurately measured it then you are amazing on one  run a  week.......

    The best cardiff park run ever by a 14 year old male is 16:45 and cardiff is a very flat fast course..........

    checking Bushy park in london's time which is the biggest one around the fastest 14 year old boy ever there was 16:49

     In fact around all the park runs in the country not many adults each week get sub 17..........

     so your 16;30 into a wind would make you a very up and coming talent

  • Really? Can't lie, I'm shocked! I never really was a great fan of running, nice to know I'm ok at it! Well, I must say I prefer rowing considerably, however, by the sound of what you are telling me, I should perhaps consider running? Thank you so much for your help! Much appreciated, do you yourself run for a club? I'm wondering, I have contacts in Bedford Harriers, do you think I should get involved? As you can see, my naivety and inexperience in the a runners would comes to the fore here! Welsh squad indeed?! Thank you for your help!
  • Stevie  GStevie G ✭✭✭✭


    let me throw a couple of stats at you (and these are out of all runners...not just 14 year olds obviously)

     16.10 for 5k on a track would have got you 460th in the UK last year and 562nd on the road.

    If you can truly do 5k in 16.10 at 14 years old off 1 run a week then you probably have national standard running ability.

    What doesn't make sense to me, is why is your coach timing you running 5k for rowing training?

    Also, how rowing training would help your running...I'd wager it wouldn't, as if anything you'd be too muscular.

    If you hadn't mentioned the GB rowing status, I would have said you owe it to yourself to bin it asap, and properly start running . Imagine if you could have been a contender.

    Can you do a proper 5k, a park run or something to lay a proper set in stone time down?

    To quantify my comments, I've done a 17.10 but I run a good 50miles a week. SO to hear someone 15 years younger doing perhaps 45miles less a week running a minute quicker is incredible.

    Just tell us you're not ona  wind up  image

  • Again, much appreciated! I promise I'm not winding you up, I'm simply going off what I've been told and seen! National standard? Really?! We run 5K for cross training which is effectively a 5k run or short 1k 'sprints' then we do core exercises or body weights i.e squat jumps, crunches, lunges, burpeesimage Its part of the scheduled training programme, usually once a week although occasionally we scrap it and go out on the water instead for a good ol' 16K outing, steady state! My CT coach always times our runs, gives us the times and sets us targets to beat them. The run is fairly flat, up and down an embankment for most of it! Helps build stamina for the longer outings and head races which quite often reach up to 7.5k along the Thames against the tide! I hope you can understand why we run nowimage Muscle is mainly built up in the legs for rowing although most decent scullers have an excellent core system and abs! I'm fairly tall for my age, which I believe goes against the grain for cross country running, and not particularly huge muscle wise for my squad. I've run before, at school obviously and have twice represented my school at regional competitions about 4 years ago. I would love to give running a try but the rowing is a part of me now and it'd be hard to leave behind. On the other hand, if what you are telling me is really true, it'd be worth a shot. I'm no wind up, I wouldn't do that and I have no need to. I hope I've answered your questions, thanks once again for your help! I'm planning on entering a parkrun in Milton Keynes, the nearest available parkrun so will let you know the result, if you'd like?
  • >> ✭✭✭

    i suggest you first enter a race if you want to get an accurate time as without an accurate time on a race it is all speculation. it sounds too good to be true to be honest.

    in any case the reason you do not see 14 year old competing in 5000m is you are not allowed to on the track. you have to be 15 before you 5000m track. all the competitive youth are trained by their coaches to be elite middle distance runners and all the races in this age group are 3000m at most.

    if you are in the british rowing team juniors i would keep up with this. bedford harriers would be useless for you. at least go to bedford county as it is a track club. otherwise if you want to pursue running as a second sport act your rowing coaches how you can train for running without it messing up the rowing training. good luck.

  • >> ✭✭✭

    "Just wondering what you think the average 5k time is for a 14 year old. After 1 and a half months easy training (effectively 3 recovery runs and a long run each week), I can run it in about 22 minutes and I'm wondering if this is above/below average."

    Yes it is a very good time for your age and very good considering level of training but just be careful on the 'long run' mate. Running too much at your age can be dangerous. I suggest you get yourslelf down to the local running club so you have a coach what give you ideas what to do. Most have quite a big juniour section and they'll be a series a races to do in the year. Good luck.

  • Stevie  GStevie G ✭✭✭✭

    Yep Tom, definitely get a proper well measured official race time, and report back here.

    Not to doubt you, but sometimes it's easy to over or understimate times or distances...we've all done it.

    And of course...if you're already at GB level in one sport, sticking with it as opposed to the can you can't you make it nature of the running would be ridiculously risky.

    Even if you were as naturally talented as it sounds, you'd have to still put a monumental level of training in to run at national standard...it would become your life!

    However...let's all chill...post back when you've logged a 5k time at MK park run. Let us know what the course is like too...

  • Tom - I confess I'm intrigued too. When you're doing your 5k or 1k sessions with the other guys in the rowing team do you ever do them flat out ? Are you spectacularly miles ahead of your peers doing these sessions ??

    I'll be keeping an eye out for the MK park run results too. Let us know when you run it

  • Will do when I run itimage I'm racing this weekend at Bedford so it won't be then but I will report back when I have the time! In answer to your question, I am usually some way ahead of the lads on a run and usually run as fast as I can! I'll let you all know when I've got something set in stone, I know posting anonymous times that are neither confirmed nor concrete is a risky ploy and I understand your doubt. Fingers crossed, it should be in the coming weeks! Thank you all for your help!
  • Damn these talented youngsters! I've noticed at Wimbledon parkrun that it's at about 13, 14 or 15 that young runners start being able to compete well with some of the very fastest runners that do the race. A very good kid of 14 or 15 won it a few weeks back in a time of 17:47, which was age-graded at 81.5 per cent. If you're better than that, Tom, you're very good indeed.
  • How many times have I read threads like this! Anyone remember Masstnk and his amazing 5k times which never materialised? One would expect any coach overseeing National standard sport would have identified such an amazing talent immediately (which lets be honest... If this kid can run 16:10 at 14 we are talking amazing). I truly hope this develops but lets not get the bunting out just yet image
  • Tom..i don't think anyone is doubting your time................just maybe that your coach hasn't measured the course accuratly..........off road or cross country courses are not always measured to the same standard as road courses..................which is why people are suggesting you run a properely measured course so that you know exactly where you stand..............

    without a doubt you are talented as your rowing shows............image

  • In response to Will's question, I am not entirely sure. I am 14 and the average time for the people in my year was around 26 minutes. My best time for a 5k is 19:27, when I was just over 14. I'm nearly 15 and I haven't done a 5k for a while. I train regularly and have represented my region (made up of about 3-4 counties). I hope this helps.
  • But late to this party, but for anyone who cones across this and is skeptical, note although he’s not a regular runner, this is a GB junior rower. Their VO2 maxes are insane. Remember an injured rower turning up once at a running club and soon beating all the nationally-ranked runners. Her name was Steph Cooke (ended up with a modern pentathlon Olympic gold...). 
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