Cranfield 5K

Like many more I'm sure, I have set myself a target of running next year's London Marathon, starting from nothing.
I have set my first target as the Cranfield 5k in July, but having looked on RW I see there is the 'normal' race and the fun run.
This may seem an obvious/silly question, for which I apologise, but in terms of my using the 5k as a marathon-building-block, what is the difference between the race and fun-run, and would entering one be more beneficial to my training than the other.
Any help/advice appreciated. Thanks.


  • It depends on how fit you are, I guess. 5k is not a huge distance, so unless it's a massive step up from what you can do at the moment (or what you will be able to do by July), then I would suggest having a go at the 5k. Only my opinion, though.

    I did the race last year and enjoyed it. There's also a 5 mile race from the same venue a month or so later, so maybe that could be your NEXT race?!

    One definite recommendation - the 5k fills up very quickly, certainly well before the day, so make your decision and enter sooner rather than later.
  • stevhill

    the fun run is only 1.5km long. so if you are after a 5km race then you need to enter the 5k.

    i did it last year also and the atmosphere is really good. a very good choice for a first race.

    M xx
  • Thanks for the advice. I've taken the plunge and entered. Now to start training!!!

    Am having what I am sure is the first of many jitter attacks... Can someone give me a clue as to what time I, as a first-timer, should be expecting. I know this will vary wildly, but am just looking for a guideline.

    I have worked out that 5k is roughly twice the distance I walk to work, which takes just under half an hour. I know I won't be walking (at least for all of it), but is 45mins-1hour normal for a 5k? On a similar note, is run-walk accepted practice for races if it's all I can manage?

    Thanks, Steve.
  • cranfield is a really friendly race for beginners. no one will mind you run/walking. but you've got a couple of months to train so why not aim for running the whole thing. start with run/walking for 40 minutes and over a few weeks gradually reduce the length and frequency of the walking bits.

    if you regularly walk to work then you've got an enormous hedstart on most beginners who will have nothing like that level of background fitness

    by the way its very normal to have pre-race jitters in the run up to your first race.
  • Stevhill
    I'm a coach at Bedford Harriers. We are just starting our summer beginners group. We start by having people jog 2 mins/walk 2 mins round the running track. Some people struggle with this. One aim for this group is to run the Cranfield 5k and they do. I'm sure you can do it with a steady build up. Even better, why not come along to our group. We meet at Bedford International Athletics Stadium, Barker Lane, Bedford, at 6:30 on Mondays and Wednesdays.
  • Lakes: thanks for the invite. Unfortunately, I won't be able to make it to those dates, and you're a bit far away from me. However I look forward to seeing you (no doubt from a long way behind!!) at the race.

    On a further note, could someone tell me if I should have received my race pack by now; or when does it come? Thanks.
  • stevhill
    I'd be surprised if you'd got it already. Probably mid to late June.
  • I've entered online. Hoping to slipstream Buff again - for most of the way before he does me with a devastating turn of pace in the finishing straight. Which is what happened in Stevenage last November. Will be hard to improve on that 21+ min finish but going to try.
  • my number has arrived for this - will be hoping for around 25-26 minutes. see you all there :-)
  • Hoping to break 23 minutes for the first time.

    Number not arrived yet :-(
  • Nor mine MRF, though have entry confirmation on email so will bring that with me on the night if it fails to turn up!
  • Number still not arrived. Anyone else entered on line and not received a number yet ?
  • Still sans number here. Will phone the organiser on Monday/Tuesday if it hasn't turned up.
  • Right, well I'm doing this race. Just coming back from six weeks of injury though, so will definitely not be racing it flat out - hopefully this should be more of a fast pace training run. Although that would leave me uncomfortably close to getting a PW, hmm don't like that idea.

    Anyway, will maybe see some of you guys there.

  • Finally got my number, I'm #51. I'll be wearing my Almost Athletes of Cheltenham vest. Must leave the office in plenty of time to get back to Bedfordshire.

    Good luck to all participants tonight.
  • i'm number 556 and will be wearing a NHRR vest (black with green, yellow and bue horizontal stripes)

    has your number arrived Dr G?
  • I'm 221 I think. No club vest for me tonight, so I'll be fairly anonymous...
  • Number 157 - Probably a View from Running vest- 5 races in 7 days is stretching available kit ! Need to also leave town soon to get back to Luton and then drive up to Cranfield. Son wants to do the 1 mile fun run as well so need to get going soon.
  • Enjoyed this race a lot, very well organised, etc. Good weather for running, not too hot. I don't remember that hill from last year, though. Just missed out on my 23 minute target, I'll get there sooner or later.

    Nice to meet you, M, good to put a face to a forum name. Well done on your PB. I'll look out for you in future local races in Herts/Beds/Bucks.

    Overall a very enjoyable evening. Looking forward to the 5 mile event in August.
  • Very good race for me. Despite the protestations above of "just a fast paced training run", I of course ended up running it hard. Was very very pleased indeed with 18:13, 16 seconds slower than my PB but that hill was worth at least 20 I thought. Clearly the six week injury layoff hasn't affected my 5k speed too much!

    Feeling a bit stiff today now though, off for a gentle 5 miles to try to loosen my legs up a bit.
  • good to meet you too MRF - a good race for me - pb by 6 seconds 24.52 :-)
  • does anyone know if the results for this are available yet?
  • Results (provisional) are here:

    Quite pleased with my finish, 204th out of 406 ain't bad for me.

    I'm now looking forward to the 5 mile event in August.
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