How much you would run before a 5k will depend on how much you have trained in the weeks prior. There are many programs out there that will give you the right steps to get ready for a 5k race.
Assuming you have been training for more than 5 weeks or so, I would advise the following schedule in the week running up to your 5k race. Let’s imagine your race is a Sunday:
1. Monday before the race: do not run. It’s the beginning of the week and rest is the best remedy to get ready. You will have ample opportunities to run during the week. Again, this assumes you have been training in the weeks before and have gained endurance already
2. Tuesday: Run for 3 miles. Yes you read that right! It’s time to pick it up a bit. You understand why you needed to rest on Monday.
3. Wednesday: Do some exercise but not running. I recommend biking, rowing or the elliptical at your gym. Do not go beyond one hour of exercise. Running would be too much of a repeat activity compared to the night before. As an alternative, rest for the day. Running is only an option here, depending on how fit you feel.
4. Thursday: Another opportunity to run! This time for 2 miles. Last push before the big day so go for it!
5. Friday and Saturday: time to rest again. Let your muscles relax and recover before the big day. You are almost there! Enjoy the build, it’s exciting.
6. Sunday: D-day! Obviously that day you will run for the 5k the fastest you can. You will do it! It’s only a matter of how quick it will be. Remember to enjoy every moment of it. Chances are you have trained for many weeks and now need to reap the rewards. Congrats!