Begin running

Just starting to run

Easy start running plan – Run for 30 minutes in just 10 weeks

April 30, 2019

This is the running plan I used after giving up smoking. Although it looks easy I found that I was getting breathless quite quickly. The trick is to start slowly, stick to the plan and keep at it. If you have a break don’t give up, just go back a stage or two and you’ll soon recover.

It can be tempting to reduce the walk recovery period, but this just makes it harder and more likely you’ll be too tired to continue! The important part of this plan is to take it slowly and carefully to minimize the risk of injury. Since your just starting to run, muscles, ligaments and the cardiovascular system are unused the sorts of demands being placed on them and they take time to adjust, recover and strengthen. Don’t push too hard to soon. That doesn’t mean stopping because your a bit breathless or its hard work, just be sensible and don’t rush.

Unfortunately I made all of the above mistakes such as skipping stages, cutting back the recovery period, giving up and then resuming at the same level. I managed to pick up some injuries, take a hard fall and lose motivation as a result, but am getting better at being sensible now.

The following running plan uses a one and two day break period. For example run Monday, Wednesday and Saturday. Rest on Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Sunday when a gentle walk can often be beneficial although remember these are rest days. If any week is particularly tiring, just repeat it the following week instead of pushing to step up to the next stage.

  • Week 1: Run 2 minutes, walk 4 minutes. Repeat 5 times
  • Week 2: Run 3 minutes, walk 3 minutes. Repeat 5 times
  • Week 3: Run 5 minutes, walk 2.5 minutes. Repeat 4 times
  • Week 4: Run 7 minutes, walk 3 minutes. Repeat 3 times
  • Week 5: Run 8 minutes, walk 2 minutes. Repeat 3 times
  • Week 6: Run 9 minutes, walk 2 minutes. Repeat 2 times then run 8 minutes 1 time
  • Week 7: Run 9 minutes, walk 1 minutes. Repeat 3 times
  • Week 8: Run 13 minutes, walk 2 minutes. Repeat 2 times
  • Week 9: Run 14 minutes, walk 1 minutes. Repeat 2 times
  • Week 10: Run 30 minutes. Repeat once and celebrate!

391 responses to “Easy start running plan – Run for 30 minutes in just 10 weeks”

  1. pallen says:

    I’m on week 3 now and its going OK but I get really breathless by the end and don’t know how I’m going to last an extra 2 mins on the next stage.

  2. admin says:

    @pallen. If your really struggling then just extend that stage for another week. Your bound to get a bit breathless as you asking your body to do more than its used to and the speed at which it adapts varies from person to person.

    The hardest stage for me (apart from week 1!) was week 4 which I extended by 5 days. However I found that after completing the 9 minutes stage at week 6 I had a real breakthrough and felt I could run for much longer than needed to progress to the next stage.

    If your breathing is really causing a problem, or your experiencing any pains, then you should seek medical advice without delay. Hopefully you checked with your doctor before starting the program.

    Good luck with week 3 and let us know how you get on!

  3. Brian says:

    I’m on week 6 and feeling great. I also quit smoking a few months ago and this program had really made running more accessible than it was in the past. I did have a little trouble with week 5 so I extended it for a week. I know I still have a few weeks left, but what’s a good program for training for a my first 5k this spring?

  4. beginrunning says:

    Nice one Brian! I’m glad to hear your doing well and found the plan accessible. Its such a good feeling being able to run when you’ve given up smoking. This plan can be used to prepare for 5k quite easily since it takes your up to running for 30 minutes. While a 5k time depends on age,weight,fitness and gender – its probably going to be no longer than 35 to 45 minutes and maybe nearer 30 minutes. You can add a week to the plan to take you up to 40 minutes which comes very easily. After that, running 3 times per week alternating the following on a weekly basis.

    • week 1: 3 x 5km
    • week 2 :2 x 5km and 1x7km (easyish)
    • week 3: 1 x5km then speed day of 1x 2 minutes consisting of running fast for 10 seconds then slow jog for 10 seconds then recovery day of slow and easy 5k
    • Then go back to week 1 and repeat the cycle

    Theres no real need to include the fast intervals and these are probably the quickest way to pick up an injury or twist an ankle. Flat, forgiving ground is vital. I also found that a niggling knee problem didn’t appear until I was regularly doing 40 minute runs, but then I am a bit decrepit! The following is geared to increasing speed for a 5k and seems OK Good luck Brian, it would be great to hear how you get on.

  5. CT says:

    I’ve just found your website. Thank you for the outline on how to begin. I was wondering if you have any additional comments for those of us who are very overweight. I am very athletic and although my cardio is pretty bad right now, I am strong and able to work out. I’ve gained a bit of weight over the last few years following having children. I noticed that there isn’t anything about warm up or cool down. Any additional insight is appreciated.



  6. beginrunning says:

    @CT – Glad you liked the outline plan. Re overweight runners – assuming your doctor has cleared you to start running, I guess the most noticeable difference will be increased stresses particularly on joints. You’ve probably got an advantage as your strong and athletic and will know the difference between healthy muscle aches and pains that require attention!

    I would imagine that correct shoe choice will be even more important for the overweight runner as lighter runners can often get away with the wrong shoe type for a while. Also any of the biomechanics related problems may show up earlier since the additional stresses will cause problems more quickly. It could also be helpful to choose softer (but stable) ground if its available.

    As for warm up and cool down you right to point this out. I have to admit that when I started I was too lazy to do either although I’m definitely out of that habit now. To warm up I initially found five minutes brisk walking to be ok with the same to warm down. To end a session, the basic static stretches are a good idea too – theres a few here. I hope you have lots of fun running and improving you cardio.

  7. CT says:

    Thanks so much for the quick reply and great insight. I’ll check back withyou as I progess through the schedule.


  8. bonbon says:

    What speed should i use to follow your 10 week plan? i just tried to run for 2 min followed by walking 2 min and i already find it very tired after workout.

  9. beginrunning says:

    @bonbon – It sounds like you’ve cut your walk recovery period short as on the first week it should be run 2 minutes and walk 4 minutes, repeat 5 times. This should make it a little easier and it will be easier to judge what speed you should be going after you’ve done it a few times. Ultimately you want to be going fast enough to make it a challenge, but in the beginning its a good idea to take it easy and let your body (and your mind!) get used to these new demands.

    Its good to be tired after the workout however you should check with your doctor that its OK for you to run.

  10. bonbon says:

    THanks! Will try that again!

  11. Shannon says:

    First of all, I was so glad to find advice that didn’t scare me away from running and looked easy for starters. I was getting in the mindset to just do something, and your advice looked pretty doable to say the least! Well, my little brother (who is obese) and I (also overweight) started your plan! We changed it just a little, and added another week in the beginning, running 1 minute and walking 5 minutes. I didn’t want to scare him, and we are now both hooked! I lost 5 pounds after the first 2 running sessions, and now do basic yoga stretching 6 days a week. There is a big difference and I am so proud of my little brother! I am 22, he is 14, and the plan works for both of us. Thanks!

  12. beginrunning says:

    @Shannon – Its great to hear you and your Brother have found the plan useful and it was a good idea adding the extra week in the beginning to make it easier to get into. You’ve achieved a lot already and your little brother is lucky having you around! The basic yoga and stretching sounds great and I’ve found stretching really helpful, especially with easing / preventing some aches.

    Thanks for taking the time to post a comment on the plan and it would be great to hear how you progress. I hope summer will be a whole lot more fun now you’re running!

  13. Norm/Toronto says:

    Tommorow will be dY ONE.

    My gut measured 44.5 inches.

  14. Ron says:

    Thanks for the great information…
    At 40 years old and 240 lbs I suppose it aint comming off by just laying off the pizza and beer.

    Im at week two and happily 8 lbs lighter. If I can do it anyone can.. busy job, family ect…

    Thanks again

  15. beginrunning says:

    @Ron – Great going there Ron – losing 8lbs in 2 weeks must have put a smile on your face! Cheers

  16. Aurelia says:

    I was wondering at which speed I should be running on the treadmill. I’m on week one and I do the walking portion at a speed of 3.2-3.5 mph. I do the running at a speed of 4.5 (o incline). At the end of 30 minutes, I have finished 2 miles (10 laps) according to the machine.

    Should I increase the speed and if so when?


  17. beginrunning says:

    @aurelia – Its hard to say how fast you should be running as everyone has different fitness levels, experience, weight, age etc.

    A good guide is that you should be able to hold a conversation while your running (you might get some strange looks from people on the cross trainer!)

    Its worth experimenting with different speeds until you find a comfortable level.

    The walk period is aimed at letting you recover and drop heart rate while keeping moving, so you shouldn’t be walking too fast . Again its something you’ll want to experiment with.

    After awhile you’ll get a feel for your preferred speed and by the end of the plan will know when you want to increase speed for a faster session and when you just want an easy running day.

    Congratulations on doing the first week.

  18. tamika says:

    hi i started exercising today only i pushed myself too hard i ran/walk for 30 min 15 min per 1.86 miles and was feeling a little dissy at the end i am 5ft 6 and weight 175 lb i have not exercised in about a year im just wondering if thats ok for me or do i need try somthing else

  19. beginrunning says:

    @Tamika I guess the first thing to recommend would be a visit to the doctor to check everything is OK and it’s safe for you to exercise. Don’t forget to tell them what/how much exercise you were doing when the symptoms started.

    Generally dizziness during or after exercise can occur for a number of reasons. Often it’s just down to overdoing it, especially if you haven’t run for a while or aren’t used to exercise. Other reasons can include lack of oxygen (ineffective breathing or inability to get the amount of oxygen you need for that level of exertion), lack of energy (not enough calories consumed near running session) or a drop in blood pressure.

    Hope you get an all clear from the doc and get back into running at a slightly easier pace!

  20. niquani says:

    tomorro will b my first day. I’m going to give it all I have though. I already walk and run a little but I want to bump it up.

  21. Jackie says:

    Thanks so much! I saw a bit of the Chicago Marathon today and I’m pumped. I’m also very overweight (280 lbs) so I want a program that allows me to take it slow. What do you think about incorporating weights with this program? Because of my weight, I want to make sure my knees are strong and I know a few weight lifting exercises for my legs that will make the joints stronger…or do you think it’ll be too much? I always tend to do too much too fast and that get’s me in trouble. Thanks so much! Wish me luck!!!

  22. beginrunning says:

    @Jackie Generally it can be beneficial to incorporate weights, but body weight exercises can help with general strengthening too.

    The most important thing is to make sure each exercise (with or without weights) is performed correctly otherwise it can do more harm than good (apologies if you know the correct form already).

    One or two sessions with a professional trainer can save a lot of agony later on. Advice from a physiotherapist before starting can help too. When you get to know your biomechanics you’ll have a better idea of which areas need strengthening the most and can target weak areas.

    I know what you mean about doing too much too fast – it can be a real problem when it catches up with you. If your like me this running plan is easy to follow and builds up gradually over time. You can always add strength work after a few weeks if you feel like it.

    It’s great to hear your pumped and ready to go! Good luck with the program and let me know how you get on.

  23. Frank says:

    I’ve come across running programs like this in the past, but none that help with troubleshooting. Initially when I tried this, after 2 weeks in to the program, I could barely walk anymore. My knees were shot, my shins shot, my hips, all my joints ached and every day movements seemed impossible. I’m very overweight, and only 27. I was athletic in highschool/college days, but those days are long gone. I now stand at 5’11 and weigh 270lbs. I want to start running again, but the pain I suffered in the earlier attempts has me completely unmotivated. Could it really be just the shoes? Or should I be starting off a different way?

  24. beginrunning says:

    @Frank – Some interesting points here but before I get into specifics I’d say this running plan should be used as a general guide. While you’ll progress faster if you stick to the plan you can modify it to fit your needs.

    As I mentioned above, if it’s a struggle to move to the next week then repeat the week you’ve just done. Another approach to the plan is to simply extend the periods so that, for example, 1 week is extended to cover 3 weeks. This is useful if you can’t run regularly, the plan really is too hard or your using it remedially. If you have a break just return to the plan at the week you feel most comfortable and then work your way back up at your own speed. Finding the level that suits you is a great way to keep motivated.

    Your right about the plan being no good for troubleshooting. Because everyone is so different you may have adapt it according to the issues that affect you. It sounds like you really suffered after the first couple of weeks and it’s impossible to know what your exact problems were. It must have been disheartening to lose motivation like that.

    A good course of action would be to get some professional advice from a physiotherapist. They can identify problems with your biomechanics and a good sports injury physio should also pick out anything in your running style thats causing problems.

    From the extent of your suffering I doubt that its “just” the shoes but the wrong type can have a large effect.

    Your weight will definitely play a part in as much as your body has to work harder and any injuries or issues with biomechanics may show up sooner and to a greater degree.

    You say that you were athletic at college and perhaps this may be adding to your problems. Since you remember being fitter and lighter you may be running too fast and and demanding too much from yourself. Your problems may be caused by overdoing it.

    Maybe the best course of action when you start again would be to get fitted for the correct running shoes at a reputable store. Then visit a physiotherapist and explain the pains you got last time and what your goals are. If given the all clear start the plan again, but this time take things slower and extend each week to cover three weeks, or longer if you have to. You could even prepare by walking for 30 mins 3 times a week before you even start running again. I understand that this will be hard as you used to be fit and your expectations are high but there’s no rush.

    If you add on an appropriate calorie restricted diet and some basic static stretches at the end of each run then you should make even better progress. HTH, Good luck Frank.

  25. Ella Bella UK says:

    Week 1: Run 2 minutes, walk 4 minutes. Repeat 5 times

    Okay i am new to this, infact i have yet to start, i am all geared up to running, but its just words in my head at the mo.

    So, “Week 1: Run 2 minutes, walk 4 minutes. Repeat 5 times” is that do 2 mins run and then 4 mins walk, 5 times that session, or just 6 mins per night for 5 sessions for the 1st week…

    Thanks! and much appreciated this blog being here!!!

    Ella x

  26. beginrunning says:

    @Ella Bella UK – You got it the first time! For week one – “do a 2 mins run, then a 4 mins walk, 5 times that session” (30 mins total). You could do three sessions that week for example one 30 min session on each of the following days: Monday, Wednesday and Saturday. Let me know if its not clear.

    Glad you appreciate the blog and good luck running

  27. Ella Bella UK says:

    Hello, just letting you know, upto now i have only done 2 x 30 mins sessions, so i guess i am on stage 1 for maybe 2 weeks, only because i have to wait for someone to run with me, as the area i live in, really is not safe for a woman to be on her own. I hurt so much the day after my 1st run, that i am abit shocked i am now on my 3rd run which is tomorrow. Working upto 2 runs in a week, next week hoping for 3. Glad i found your site, keep up the good work! x

  28. beginrunning says:

    @Ella – Glad to hear you’ve got off to good start running. Hope you find a partner soon

  29. Coco says:

    Hi. I remember seeing a plan like this a couple of years ago, swearing I would try it, and for some reason just abandoning it.

    But seeing all the enthusiastic response this post has generated has made me want to make a serious go off it.

    Before I start I have a bit of a silly question. How do people usually count the time? I don’t have a stopwatch (or a watch)…

    Thanks in advance x

  30. beginrunning says:

    @Coco – Great to hear your ready to make a serious go of it.

    As for counting the time without a stopwatch, you could try a sundial but its hard to measure seconds and they can be a bit awkward πŸ™‚

    Seriously though you could try counting the seconds using 1001, 1002 etc. While it wouldn’t be practical in the long term, it may help get you started. If you say it out loud it will have the added benefit of keeping your pace slow.

    Really you need a stopwatch to use any time based training plans. There’s no reason why you couldn’t use a stopwatch on a cell phone if you have one.

    Another alternative is use a distance based plan, although when you’ve just started running it can be a bit demoralizing if the distance is too much. One thing you could try is jogging gently as far as you can once to get a maximum distance. On your next session run (jog) half that distance then walk the other half. Repeat this 4 more times. This will give you one session. Don’t worry if you can’t do all of the repeats in one session, just work your way up to it. This isn’t ideal but will get you going until you can find a stopwatch. Good luck!

  31. pchieng says:

    This is a really good plan for people interested in starting to run. I have been running for years, so even if I stop running for months at a time, I will still be able to at least jog for 30 minutes.

    New runners on the other hand are at a disadvantage and this is where this plan will come in handy. I was running with a bunch of coworkers for a while and we would just go up and back 10 minutes and the instructions for the new runners were to just run and stop/power walk or jog if you get too tired. And I think it worked for a lot of them.

  32. Keri says:

    Just wanted to stop by and say thanks for some excellent advice. πŸ™‚

  33. beginrunning says:

    @Keri – thanks for letting me know, its great to hear it helped πŸ™‚

  34. Britney says:

    Ok, so my husband and I are really starting to get into running. We have a track down the road from us that is open for the public to use. With the length of the track, it takes 4 times around to get to a mile. We do not have a stopwatch either and since we started, I dont find it would be so easy to keep watch on the time while I am trying to jog being as I am concentrating so hard on just the jogging part (I am really just beginning!!) Do you think you could do a break down with the track length for week by week guideline? I think my husband and I could find that very useful! By the way, I love what you are doing and I really find your information to be very helpful!

  35. beginrunning says:

    @Britney – It’s difficult to know what to suggest for a distance based plan around a track as everyone’s different and a short distance for one person can be too far for another. With the time based plan you don’t get that problem and if you can get hold of a cheap watch with a stopwatch function you soon get used to using it.

    Having said that, you could use the following distance based plan on your local track to get some ideas. The plan is split into only 8 weeks and might be too fast a progression. You may want to extend the periods over more than a week if the progression is too fast. If your already running you may want to start the plan in the later stages.

    The plan could be used for three days running a week with rest periods between each running day e.g run Monday, Wednesday and Saturday. Rest on Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Sunday. Your track 400m so the plan is based on meter distances. 0.5 Lap=200m, 1 lap=400m, 1.5 laps=600m etc.

    • Week 1: Run 200m walk 400m. Repeat 5 times
    • Week 2: Run 400m walk 400m. Repeat 5 times
    • Week 3: Run 600m walk 300m. Repeat 4 times
    • Week 4: Run 800m walk 200m. Repeat 4 times
    • Week 5: Run 1200m walk 100m. Repeat 4 times
    • Week 6: Run 1600 walk 100m. Repeat 3 times
    • Week 7: Run 2200m (5.5 laps) walk 200m 2 times
    • Week 8: Run 4800m (12 laps). Repeat once and celebrate!

    If you add another half lap (200m) on week 8 and do 12.5 laps you’ve achieved 5km! One tip is to run the bends on the outside lane as this is easier. Also it’s good idea to run in the outside lanes if there are other runners on track who are faster than you. Don’t forget to run anti-clockwise around the track.

    I hope the plan gives you some ideas to get started on the track. Let me know if you’ve got any queries and it would be great to hear how you and your husband get on.

  36. Adil Majeed says:

    I have a question while running how you maintain this chart “Run 2 minutes, walk 4 minutes”. Is there a way around on that?

  37. Ashley says:

    I have started similar plans before and failed, but after reading all of these positive comments, I plan to start up again. I have recently quit smoking and so, I am looking forward to getting back into shape.

    I have noticed a number of people ask about how to keep track of your time… Perhaps you could create a playlist for each week and then put it on your iPod or music player. Choose songs close to the 2 / 4 minute range. Then organize them on the playlist in the order you plan to walk/run. i.e.: play a 2 min song, then a 4 min song, etc. Then, every time the song switches, you know its time to switch to walking/running. I don’t know if that would work, but I plan to try it!

  38. beginrunning says:

    @Ashley Glad to hear the positive comments have inspired you. Thats a great idea for using songs to keep time and so much more fun than a stopwatch. I think it answers Adil’s question too. Thanks for the tip!

  39. Emjay says:

    Hi! Thank you for this very informative website! I’ve been exercising on and off for several years now, like spinning and boxing, and recently, I tried running. I’ve been running (more like jogging) for 4 weeks now, twice a week, with a distance of 4.4 kms. and 45 mins. per run. The problem is, I don’t feel like I’m improving my pace or going any farther than 4.4. kms. per run. I would really want to be able to run at a faster pace, longer and farther. Do you think I should start with your program, or can you suggest another schedule for people me? Thank you!

  40. beginrunning says:

    @Emjay -Your probably beyond this plan now. Not sure how often your running as it sounds like your fairly busy already with spinning and boxing! To increase your running distance on your longest run of the week just run a bit further, but don’t add more than 10 percent to the distance per week. I progressed more gradually due to the slower recovery of middle age by adding distance every two weeks.

    To improve speed you could include a day of intervals. An example would be 5 min jog warm up then 5×1 min fast then 5 min jog warm down. With the spinning and boxing your already doing fair amount of anaerobic, high intensity exercise so probably don’t want to add too much more in the form of running intervals, especially if age is an issue. However in order to run faster you’ll have to include regular sessions when you run fast.

  41. Bruce says:

    Thanks for the info. Really helpful. I have been running/walking for several months recovering for severe shin splints. I have been using the run walk interval method successfully to get to 3min run/ 2 min walk.
    As I approach middle age myself I find your approach works well. I have found doing core muscle exercises has really helped me run better as well. I am looking for specific exercises on shin splints and wonder if you know of any?

  42. italo kingcat says:

    i been playing soccer all my life but i think i need more stamina and resistance. is this a good program for me?

  43. Radiah says:

    Hello, I am super excited because I started running two weeks ago and found out I am doing this wrong. I ran last week on Sunday but the side of my leg has been hurting ever since. It is more painful at night.And I wonder if this is a typical running injury for beginners. I have never ran as a sport. and the last time I can remember running somewhere was in my teens. I use to be in tip top shape. After having my two children I choosed to run to get my heart pumping and my waist size dropped so that I would eventually run in a 5k marathon. Please help me about this pain I am feeling and is there any way to help ease it ? I have th erunners high to run but Im scared about injuring myself.

  44. beginrunning says:

    @Bruce – Sorry to hear about the shin splints. They’re the one thing I’ve managed to avoid so far! The main exercise I’m aware of relating to shin splints assumes the tibialis anterior needs strengthening and involves walking on the heels with feet pointing upwards. As an alternative I sometimes use the weakest resistance bands with one end looped over the foot and the other attached to something stable. Then a few reps dorsiflexing the foot (pulling the band towards you by flexing the foot). The problem with this is the band often slips off and you don’t really get a full range of motion so its probably not that effective. Before doing either of these exercises you should check with your physiotherapist as they could make things worse. Hope it clears up soon and you can enjoy pain free running.

    @italo kingcat – If you’ve been playing soccer a long time then you’ll probably find the early stages of the plan too easy. You’ll have get used to running at slower pace in the sessions as your used to sprinting during soccer but the plan should help with endurance. If you not doing any soccer training then a couple of interval sessions during the week maybe more sport specific.

    @Radiah – Glad to hear your excited and you’ve done the right thing by not running until you’ve identified what’s causing the pain. The only way of being sure is to see a doctor or physiotherapist. The latter will be able to give you more detailed advice and rehab exercises too. Your description sounds similar to iliotibial band syndrome (which can also be felt in the knee) but only a professional can give you a reliable diagnosis. There’s all sorts of things that can cause pain when you start running including incorrect shoes, biomechanics, running style, muscle weakness, posture etc. Also it can be a shock to the system if you haven’t done any exercise for a while! With the correct running shoes, rehab, strengthening exercises, stretching and taking it easy when you start again you should soon enjoy completing your first 5k.

  45. Emma says:

    Thanks so much for all your advice! I was wondering if you could advise me on getting faster. I am a tennis player and a rugby ref in the off season. At the level that I’m reffing, it’s 30 minute halves which are spent running almost non-stop with 5 minutes for half time. I have no problem with endurance, do not feel particularly tired afterwards and run quite regularly but the sprint is lacking. In order to raise my reffing level, I need to increase my speed but currently I’m unsure how to go about this. If you could offer me any plans/ideas I would be very grateful. Thanks

  46. greg says:

    hey. im 15. 5’10” 158. im not overweight at all but id like to get more in shape and get my upper body/abs more tone. would this plan help me burn some fat and get tone?

  47. Dee says:

    Hi. I just wanted to say thanks for this plan. It was so simple and easy to use and had a target date I could see and something that seemed pretty radical for me (what run, for like more than 5 mins and outside – eek). In fact my enthusiasm hooked my friend in, which is good cause now we compare notes. We are both in our 40’s and new to running and now on week 5 and really enjoying it. My friend was particularly unsure about running, she said she isn’t built to be a runner – she’s more curvy than me – but she’s loving it more than she ever thought she would. We run seperately during the week and then get together and pick a nice venue like the lakes near us for a joint run. Its been really good so far to keep extending what we can do (we didn’t believe we would make it past running 5 mins when we started) So to keep us on our toes we are booking ourselves in for a 10k run a couple of months after we are due to hit the 30 minute mark so we have another goal to aim for. I’ve become someone who voluntarily puts on my running gear and goes out for runs on a Sunday in the park – who’d have thunk it (not me). So thanks for sharing your so simple yet effective plan!

  48. beginrunning says:

    @Emma – You could try including one or two speed sessions per week during the off season depending on how they fit in with your other training and running demands. It could be worth approximating some of the sprint distances you’ll cover during a match. I’d imagine the longest single sprint could be 200 meters (up and down the length of the pitch twice) although this would be unusual (and unlucky!). Generally your probably sprinting between 5 and 60 seconds during a game. For a structured session you could try 5 mins jog warm up then 3 x 1 min fast with 1 min jog or walk recoveries between first two runs followed by 5 min jog then 6 x 30 sec fast with 30 sec jog recoveries between each run. Finish with a 5 min warm down. For an unstructured session, just choose landmarks to sprint to during a 30 min run.

    Improving strength should benefit speed. Even bodyweight only lunges, single leg squats and bridges can help. Plyometrics such as box jumps and hops could be a good start too. If possible, join a local rugby club’s training sessions where they’ll do this and more. Being a referee might make this difficult though and you probably want to avoid a lot of the rugby specific training! Alternatively a local running / athletics / tri club will have coach that would cover this.

    Some agility work may also help you use the speed. Again a some type of coaching at a club is best for this. A very basic form you could start on your own would be shuttle runs around trees or markers (up to 5). From a standing start, run fast around the markers (alternating left to right). This will also help you avoid those angry forwards as they bear down on you at great speed! Finally, core work may help generally and doing some easy work on the same terrain as a match may benefit as they are often played on mud / slippery grass which is more tiring and requires greater strength and coordination.

    @Greg – Yes this plan can help you burn more fat, or at least use up some calories. It will also help you get more in shape. It’s not going to be much help toning or strengthening your upper body and abs though. For that you need specific exercises that target those areas. The program is a good way to get into exercise and is also worth including as part of your overall fitness program. Your also at an age when muscles respond quickly to training and recovery times are faster, a big help in getting more toned and in shape.

    @Dee – It’s great to hear the plan was helpful, you’ve really taken the bull by the horns! Getting a friend involved was a good idea and sounds like you really support each other. Your right that having a goal really helps and entering a 1oK is a real motivator.

    Thanks for taking the time to let me know you found the plan helpful and I’d love to hear how you both get on in the race. Good luck!

  49. Nathan says:

    I have trouble with shin splints. I am already in really good shape. I cycle (road and mt) 2 to 3 times a week for 2-3 hours so my cardio shouldn’t be an issue. I am unable to run the 2 minutes at the beginning of the program for more than one session. The fronts of my shins are on fire by that point and I can’t run again for over a week at least! I have purchased a pair of running shoes with inserts recommended to me by a podiatrist but it doesn’t seem to help much. I wonder if you have any suggestions? I would really like to be able to run as well as cycle!

  50. Nathan says:

    Just noticed that shin splints have already been addressed. Thanks anyway πŸ™

  51. beginrunning says:

    @Nathan – It’s possible you started running again too soon as you mention not running for a week after the symptoms. Perhaps leaving it a lot longer before trying to run again could help. Walking using the new orthotics will help you get used to them before you run again. Maybe after a few weeks break, if you have full range of motion and no pain you could try a gentle jog. Any hint of pain then you should stop. If it’s OK then it’s worth taking a lot longer to build up the time spent running. Running downhill could also make symptoms worse. A good sports physio will be a help too since there are different types of shin splints and a couple of sessions could get you on the right track. Hope they heal up quickly.

  52. Diana says:

    Im joining the marines soon. Is there any way I can do this process faster? Does it have to be every week or can it be every 3 days or so?

  53. beginrunning says:

    @Diana – You can complete the process faster but it depends on age, weight, existing fitness etc. Since your joining the marines your probably quite young and fairly active already so could try to speed up the process a little. The problem with increasing distance too fast is that injuries are more likely to occur – the one thing you really want to avoid if you have to pass a fitness test! You may find you can start the program at a higher level if you done some running already, but wherever you start your first stage should be one week duration. After that you could try progressing to a new stage after 6 days with runs every other day, at the end of 12 days ( two stages) take 2 days off before progressing to to the next stage. But ANY hint of problems such as pains in knees, soles of feet, ITB, heels/achilles or shins then stop, do some stretches, rest and see a physio. Meantime you could maintain fitness with swimming and cycling. Some general stretching after you’ve run is good idea anyway.

    I imagine you plan on doing a mile run in around 10 mins. By measuring your regular running route using the free version of you’ll get an idea of how close to your target distance / time you are. This will also help you set a comfortable pace on the day of your test. To achieve your target you may not need to have progressed through the whole plan anyway, so trying to progress too fast and risking problems is unnecessary. Injury avoidance isn’t just important for the test but also subsequent training as you don’t want to be sidelined due to nagging / recurring injuries picked up earlier. Good luck joining the Marines!

  54. Trout says:

    Hi, I am so pleased to find your website, it has relly helped.
    I am on week two and boy that extra minute running really shows itself. My breathing is okay until that last minute then it gets a bit ragged but not enough to stop. Think I will do an extra week of this routine though as I don’t want to get dishearted.
    Thanks for all the advice I have seen on your pages, its really helps a complete novice who feels that the questions she has are a bit daft.
    In my head I dont believe I can become someone who can run for half an hour but on my blog I see that I have gone from running a minute and nearly being sick, to running 3 minutes. Thank you for youre encouragement to all of us who have no faith in ourselves. I will keep reading.

  55. beginrunning says:

    @Trout- Glad you’ve found the site helpful. I remember that struggle on week 2! It’s a good idea to extend it as that can make progress a lot easier.

    Thanks for stopping by to let us know how your getting on.

  56. Trout says:

    Hi again
    Sorry to post again so soon but Im on week 3, first attempt and it was HARD. Didn’t think I would be able to finish the last section as the third section had included a hill and I was still breathing hard. I started that last five min run not expecting to finish it but by the last 2 mins I seemed to have got a breathing rhythm and managed to last.
    Wanted to ask if its normal if the burning feeling when youre really out of breath lasts till the next day? Im not asthmatic but do get a bit wheezy occaisionally depending on the pollen and I do take blue inhaler before I run.
    Is it also normal to ache the next day?
    Thanks for the great advice. Thankfully no need for Monkey but yet!!

  57. beginrunning says:

    @Trout – Great start to week three – well done! You should see a doctor about the burning feeling before you run again just to make sure all is OK.

    As for aching the next day (or two) that’s normal when you increase distance, speed etc – especially if running is something your not used to. Some static stretches after running can help with this and it maybe worth eating some extra protein. At least you don’t have to worry about monkey butt yet!

    Hope the doc gives you the all clear and let us know how you get on.

  58. Trout says:

    Have just ran my first mile non stop, ok it took just over 12 and a half mins but Im only on week 3. This was a special run just to see if i’d improved from when i started and could only run for a minute.
    Im going to stick to your plan as although Ive got my breathing right most of the time my muscles and joints etc still need building up.
    You have got me to my first goal of running a mile before Im 40 and its took 3 weeks of your plan so thank you very much. Next goal is to get to 5km but will take my time getting there, but thanks to you I now believe I will get there.

  59. Gorgeousgray says:

    I’m on Week 3 and I thought I better get some clarity on rest days. I think you mean a rest from running. ….So I’ve been doing lunges, weight work, elliptical, stairs…..anything but running on my rest days. (I’m trying to reshape my body). I’m finding that I’m sore before I run…which makes it a little harder at the beginning….but I’m assuming that I’m working different muscles, even if they are on the same legs! Am I supposed to not do anything on the off days?

  60. beginrunning says:

    @Trout – that’s great, congratulations on running your first mile! Hope you have fun achieving 5km, keep us posted.

    @Gorgeousgray – As this is a beginners plan the rest days are intended to be low activity days. Some stretching and easy walking to keep things moving is what worked for me in the beginning, however a lot depends on your age, existing fitness etc.

    It’s probably better not to run if your sore from other exercise and lunges and stairs will be targeting the same muscles as running (they are good strengthening exercises for runners). Another problem caused by running when tired or sore is that you may try to compensate and exaggerate any biomechanical problems making pain and injury more likely. Overdoing it also means your progress will be slower as your body isn’t getting enough time to recover.

    You could try cutting your resistance exercise down to one day and see how it goes. Once your body is used to running then you may find that you can gradually increase it.

  61. Gorgeousgray says:

    Thanks! I’m going to take it a little easier on my off days—maybe focus on upper body and abdominals. I want to stay on course and avoid injuries. Thanks again, I appreciate you!

  62. Cross-Country Newbie says:

    I joined cross-country this year and my Coach said that I was doing better than some of the other new runners he’s had. My problem is that I have an 8-10 minute mile and I’m slow compared to the other kids on our team. I feel really discouraged about running and our season starts August 10th. I’ve tried all sorts of things like different workouts and running with them, but then I got tired too quickly and had to stop. Do you have any advice to build speed and maintain endurance?

  63. greg says:

    hey. i just did session 2 on week 3 and im feelin great. i run around my yard with my ipod. i like my yard because it has some hills so it makes me get a great workout. on my rest days i am doing some ab work and weight training and i think im seeing some results already… running is now a habit for me. its great.

  64. beginrunning says:

    @Cross-Country-Newbie – I can understand why you feel discouraged if your comparing yourself with faster runners, but your Coach says your better than some other new runners he’s trained so you’ve got some potential!

    If your tiring too quickly AND having to stop during workouts then maybe your performing them too hard or fast. For building speed you want to be running your intervals fast – but not so fast you can’t complete all the reps. Perhaps the key for improving your speed is to practice running slower! Try a basic interval session of 5 min jog warm up then 3Γ—1 min fast then 5 min jog warm down – but at a pace where you can complete the whole session. Once your used to that, increase the reps to 5 then build speed. Gradual progression is important. Include hill reps on some days if you can, but again at a pace where you can complete them.

    For distance runs get used to pacing yourself and get a feel for running at different speeds. Include a longer run in your schedule which requires finding a pace that allows you to complete it. Again, gradual progression is important in building distance. Some strength work could also help and your Coach will recommend the best exercises.

    It’s possible you start runs too fast and then tire early, so you may find starting a bit slower would give you a faster time overall.

    Your worries about the season starting soon may have an affect your training now, perhaps leading to you train too fast in an attempt to be fast enough for the season start.

    Psychology is an important factor in performance, especially in a competitive environment. A big ally here will be your Coach who can not only help you improve your speed and endurance but can also help
    with your mental approach. However they need to know how you feel if they’re going to be able to suggest strategies for improving your performance.

    Good luck with the new season and I’m sure your speed and endurance will improve. Don’t forget to let us know!

    @greg – It feels good when you see results and it really sounds like your enjoying that running habit. Hills really hit the spot don’t they!

  65. greg says:

    yea man… the only problem is that when it rains because i run outside. like today i was going to run but its pouring so i dont think that’s going to happen.

  66. Elaine says:

    I am looking forward to starting this plan this weekend. I have a 6 month old baby boy and I have about 30 pounds of pregnancy weight to lose. I haven’t exercised in a year so I’m sure it will be tough at first. I’m breastfeeding my son and I’ve heard that sometimes exercise can diminish a mother’s milk supply. What is your opinion on this ?

  67. beginrunning says:

    @Elaine – Congratulations on the birth of your baby boy and congratulations on starting exercise again after a year break. Sorry, but I can’t offer any opinion on the effects of running and breast milk supply. I’d be interested to know should you get any information though. Hopefully your Midwife / Ob will be able to give you some advice. Good luck with the plan!

  68. Sue says:

    I keep hearing about the benefits of running but yet I did not know how to start and also I got a bummed knee – so I really can’t run fast – too much jarring. I came across this URL – and look at the plan -week1 – u r already running 2 mins – what speed should I be running – would it be like a power walk speed – or a very slow jog? I also notice that week 10 you will be running for 30 mins a big jump from week 9. Also, it is 30 mins – if this is to prepared for a 5K race – wouldn’t it take longer than 30 mins?


  69. beginrunning says:

    @Sue – Maybe if you’ve got a bad knee then running isn’t such a good idea. Not only could it injure your knee further but you could get other problems as you try to compensate. It would be worth getting some professional advice before starting.

    As far as running speed goes, it all depends on how fit your are when you start. Some people may only be able to manage a power walk speed, while others can achieve a slow jog. It may take a bit a of experimenting at first to find a speed that suits you. As long as you can maintain a conversation during the running periods then your not running too fast.

    The difference between week 9 and 10 might seem large, but the only change is you cut the 1 minute walk period and run instead. By the time you get to this stage it doesn’t feel like such a jump.

    Your right that 5k could take longer than 30mins, but it all depends on the individual. Some people may be OK doing 5km in 30 mins at the end of the plan while others maybe running slower and take longer. Some may even do it a bit faster πŸ™‚

  70. Brandi says:

    I have been running for 4 weeks now (with last week off due to illness). I am really finding I am “stuck” at about a 2 minute running cycle. I was on a different running program that went from 1.5 mins to a jump of 3 mins and found it was just too much. I am going to try this plan and am excited to give it a try.

    I am curious if anyone else is finding a “wall” as they start out and at what times.

    Also, I am curious how long people are finding it takes them to really be ready to run a 5k? It’s almost September and I am planning to run a 5k in May.

    Best of luck to all and thanks in advance for any replies!

  71. Sean says:

    I was wondering if you had any ideas for a plan to do after the ten weeks. One that would maintain and add to what was achieved in the first ten weeks.

  72. beginrunning says:

    @Brandi I got stuck on all the early stages! 5 and 8 mins were real sticking points. Even on week 8 i was finding the first 4 mins difficult but I now realise that was partly due to the process of warming up. Because it was a new experience I felt that i just “had” to stop, but once I was used to the felling and carried on, it didn’t seem so bad. As time goes on your body adapts and gets fitter too. It still takes me ages to warm up though! Of course you should make sure there’s no medical reason why your getting stuck.

    For running a 5k you should be fine by May. Many people will be running at or near 5k by the end of the program and even if your not it should be fairly easy to achieve shortly afterwards by adding a bit more time/distance. Good luck with that 5K!

    @Sean Maintaining the first 10 weeks is fairly easy with a couple of runs a week (one should be 30mins or over). Even with breaks of a week or two fitness soon returns. As for adding to the plan then its worth doing some intervals / hills to build speed (there’s a couple of ideas in some earlier comments), add to distance by doing at least one longer run a week (if that’s your goal but build distance by no more than 10 percent per week). Strengthening exercise is also a help, especially if you’ve got biomechanical issues. Specific core exercises can be beneficial too. There’s been some debate about static stretching but I’ve found it helpful. I hope to do a post soon on a couple of plans that I’ve been trying during the last year.

  73. Starting Over says:

    I’ve used this plan before and I know others that have too – very successfully. There are also a large number of physios here in Sydney, Aus who recommend this program. And I’ve just sent a link to this site to a friend in Englan d who wants to start running.

    Here are some things that I found helped and some of your readers might find helpful too.

    If starting from scratch or starting over sometimes it’s useful to modify the program a little. For example I found early on that 2/4 was too hard in the first week so I went for 1/5 x 5 or 1/4 x 6.
    And don’t feel defeated if you have to repeat a week or two here and there. It’s not like repeating school and your knees, hips and heels will love you for it.
    I also found that in the earlier weeks reversing the order so that I walked first and then ran was helpful. It helped with the warmup – we’re all short of time so building the warmup into the program was useful. But with any mods it’s important to start following the program as it is written as soon as you can.

    If you haven’t run before or are starting out again I would strongly recommend that you do some leg strengthening for a few weeks leading into the program. There’s an article on this site about having fun with sore knees, flat feet etc. I urge beginners to follow that strengthening program for at least a few weeks before starting the running program. That way you won’t have an 8 week layoff in the middle repairing the damage.

    And lastly, STRETCH at the end of your run. Hamstrings, glutes, quads, calves and especially the Achilles. Not just the lower body but also chest, back shoulders etc as this loosens up your chest and back muscles to allow your lungs to expand more and thus suck in more air.

    Once I completed the program I started doing sprints and hillwork to strengthen up and started signing up for fun runs. 5K at first then built up. I just added a couple of minutes each week to the length of my run. What is critical is don’t try and measure distance, measure your time. The distance will come. You will also find that by the time you can run 30 minutes, running 40 minutes isn’t that hard. Once you’re running 40 minutes 50 minutes will come pretty easily too.

    Within 8 months I was running 10k fun runs in 50 minutes and within 12 months I did the 14k Sydney city to surf in 75 minutes.

    It’s a great program and well worth sticking with. This is what worked for me, it won’t work for everyone but hopefully there are some clues in it for people to use. Good luck everyone.

  74. beginrunning says:

    @Starting Over – Some nuggets there! I hadn’t thought of walking first and then running in the earlier stages but I can see it would be a big help with warming up – it seems really obvious now. Also the idea of measuring time rather than distance is worth remembering as that’s caught me out a couple of times! Congratulations on the Sydney 14k and thanks for taking the time to post some great advice.

  75. Brandi says:

    Thanks for the feedback. I hired a personal trainer and began working with her this week. I immediatley saw where I was going wrong. I was really focused on the speed of my run. Once she helped me see to slow down my run to a comfortable level, it became much easier! I realize it seems so simple but I couldn’t see it until I had it pointed out to me. I was so focus that “running means going at this speed” that I was pushing myself into failure.

    Thanks again for all the feedback and best of luck to everyone!!! We can do it!!!

  76. Gorgeousgray says:

    Hi again, I’m on week seven-9min/1min and was starting to wonder about the type of ground I’m running on. I have a treadmill that I use when I start a new week and then I try to run the rest of the time on a gravel path around a pond in my neighborhood….I’m preparing for a 5k on asphalt in October and wondered if I should include runs on asphalt soon?

  77. beginrunning says:

    @Brandi – Good point, I did the same thing – and still do sometimes!

    @Gorgeousgray – It’s worth including runs on asphalt just so your used to how it feels. It also means you wont worry about not having run on asphalt before the race :-). If you run on an asphalt road with a camber this can be a strain. If safe, try to avoid the camber which is steepest at the edge of the road, or find some asphalt without too much camber. I hope you have a great 5k and it would be good to hear how you get on.

  78. Ryan says:

    I’m 25 and i’ve been smoking for about 4 years now, i was considering starting running as a starting point to quit smoking, do you think this is a good idea or do you think i should attempt to stop the smoking first and then start running?

  79. beginrunning says:

    @Ryan – If you started running first it could help motivate you to give up smoking as your sure to get a bit breathless πŸ™‚

  80. Gorgeousgray says:

    Hello again! I finished my first 5k this past Sunday. So here is another endorsement for your running plan! I could only job comfortably a half mile when I started. I began the plan on July 23rd and ran my 5k on October 5th! My clothes are much looser although I’ve had neglible weight loss – I was and am substantially overweight…..but I prefer how my body feels now than how i felt in July….that is significant. I have historically had hip and ankle issues–but doing what you said–not skipping weeks and jogging at a talking pace kept me relatively injury free. I’m super proud and amazed that I can jog that far! I jogged about a 15.5 minute mile….the terrain was asphalt, the first mile was on a pretty nice incline and the last two were pretty hilly with a “hit the brakes” decline between mile 2 and 3—I was glad to hit the decline! So now I would like to increase my pace. I feel like you I saw that you had some sugggestions earlier in this blog. I’m pretty short (5ft) so I’m not sure what speed I should expect to get to–but I’m going to try….maybe there is a 10k in my future!

    Thank you for your advice and help! I am really grateful. I’m changing my body and my expectations of myself and you are part of that!

  81. beginrunning says:

    @Gorgeousgray – Congratulations – you did it! All that hard work and perseverance paid off and you should be really proud of your achievements. Hope you have fun increasing your speed and distance. I suppose a good speed to aim for is a bit faster than last time! (although not too much too quickly)

    From what you say it seems like you’ve gained benefits in addition to being able to run 5k and it’s nice to know the plan contributed to that a little. I’m Looking forward to hearing how your winter running goes, so keep us posted.

  82. sj20 says:

    Great plan…..My husband and I are looking for something exactly like this. We have trained together before but recently we have done very little exercise and we’d love to get fit again and lose some weight. Thank you. I hope we suceed.

  83. beginrunning says:

    @sj20 – It’s great when your partner is into running too as you can encourage each other. It can even get a bit competitive! Good luck to both of you

  84. Sammy says:

    Well this is a great plan and its so nice to read that i am not the only person in the world that needs to start at a realistic pace…… goes!!!

  85. TC says:

    I feel terribly out of shape, so I will start this programme tomorrow. I will let you know how I get on. Hopefully I will lose a few stones. By the way, I want to share this page on my facebook profile. How do I do it?

  86. beginrunning says:

    @ Sammy – It’s all in the pace πŸ™‚

    @ TC – Good luck starting the plan, looking forward to hear how you get on. You can share this page with this facebook link and I’ve now updated the social bookmark options at the end of the post.

  87. Kyle says:

    I have cystic Fibrosis (i have the docs approval – push myself to the limit πŸ™‚ ) and i am determined to to able to run my 12km Citybay fun run in september. I have give myself plenty of time to be able to train for this event and your training schedual is a great start.

    Are you able to help me out with the rest of the training?

    Again thanks πŸ™‚

  88. beginrunning says:

    @Kyle – Great to hear you’ve a supportive Doctor! Once your comfortable with 30 min runs it’s helpful to see how much distance your covering in that time. You can use the free version of mapmyrun to check route distances.

    Your next target after 30mins could be an hour. The progression I used for this was to add 15 mins on one longer run every other week – e.g. First week 30 min run on Mon and Wed then 45mins Sat. The next progression would be 30 min run on Mon and Wed as before but increase to 60mins on Sat. You don’t have to add 15 mins, you can choose the progression that works for you. You may also want to include faster runs or some other exercise. The important thing is to get adequate rest days after longer or harder sessions. Good running posture should really help breathing and a coach or running club can help here.

    Have fun with the 12km Citybay and it would be great to hear how you get on with training during the year.

  89. Kyle says:

    Thanks heaps and yeah i will let you know for sure how i go thru the year

  90. Bruce says:

    Thanks again for your advice last May – I have keep going and am now through the shin splints. I have used your plan and with the help of a very good physio am about to run for 30mins on Monday for the 1st time in 22 years – YEEHAAA.
    I started my recovery work in May 2007 with walking,massage and stretching. As you can tell i am excited and a bit nervous.
    I am now setting my next goal and read your last reply with interest. of running 10km. I am planning to do a couple of 5km fun runs now and start to get in it. I also am planning to plateau myself at 30 mins 3xweek for 4 weeks to consolidate. I’ll then do as suggested above. Do you have any other thoughts?
    Thanks Bruce

  91. Travis says:

    Thanks so much for the program guide. Im starting it today—hopefully I stay motivated and make it through to the end.

  92. Dee says:

    I posted a comment in June saying me and a friend (unfit, early 40’s, overwieght) and were on week 5 and looking at doing a 10k as our next step. Well I’m pleased to say we have now done two 10ks. Ok we are slow, and I mean we hugged the back of the race, but we still get round it. I roped my brother into running recently as he had stopped his regular karate training – and I passed on what I had learnt – good shoes, take it easy (he was definately going at it like a mad hare to start off), rest days etc and his poor knees he was worried about appear to have forgiven him and he did his 10k in an hour (we took 1hr 12 mins the second time. I even got a run in on Christmas Day through the snow – slow going but really nice, peaceful. So we are still a little amazed we’ve done 2 races since May and I find it surreal that I now jog the 4 miles home to get a run in during the week . We’ve found that the aches and pains have changed as we run more, some parts don’t ache anymore and others do. Recovery is quicker now and there is still no denying the virtuous feeling after a run. I even take my kit to London when I go with work and run along the Thames and past the Houses of Parliament for a change . I can’t wait to see what we get up to after May when we’ve got a year under our belt. Good luck to anyone building up to week 10 and beyond. Believe me the aches do get better and I hope you are having fun finding out how great your body is and how much it likes to get out there and have a bit of a run.

  93. RAS says:

    Am I really posting a message to a running blog? Never in my 40 years would I have guessed that one. Over the holidays, my friend I got to discussing turning 40 and the things we did as a reaction to that reality (I changed jobs, he ran a marathon). I told him I never liked running, couldn’t get into it, and just don’t like it. He challenged me to give it a try, suggesting we run together in a 5K on May 1, 2010. Not one to back down from a challenge, I accepted. He sent me to your page, and today I began the program.

    Day 1 felt good. With iPod on, I started with a 2 minute walk to warm up, then began the alternating 2 run/4 walk, with a 2 minute walk cool down. With zero incline on the treadmill, my speed was set at 3.0 for walk and 5.0 for run.

    My question is regarding my “off days” … can I work out on the eliptical machine between run days? (which I enjoy doing) Should I use the weight machines? Should I just surf YouTube?

    I have enjoyed reading other posts as well for motivation. At 5’8″ and now 230 lbs. I need motivation to keep me moving. Telling everyone I am running in a 5k in May, was also a good way to keep me “honest”. I don’t want to look like a fool or a quitter. Thanks for your plan and your feedback.

  94. beginrunning says:

    @Bruce – Great news on recovering from shin splints and especially on going for that first 30 min run after 22 years! I can’t really think of anything to add as you seem to have got the essentials covered and it sounds like you know your body really well now. You’ll probably know it better than your physio soon πŸ™‚

    I guess that after 4 weeks consolidation you’ll gradually increase time/distance running and maybe include some speed work as described above. The speed work isn’t a necessity as it depends on your goals and has to be weighed against greater risk of injury. If you think of any tips or suggestions while your training that could help readers it would be great to hear them.

    @Travis – Thanks for the comments . If you’ve managed to get started then you’ve already achieved something. Sometimes it’s easier to stay motivated by focussing on just completing the following week (or even the following session!). That way the plan doesn’t seem too overwhelming.

    @Dee – Nice one! 2 races since May and jogging home to get a run in – you’ve obviously found a running groove! And you had the added challenge of running with someone who needed to slow down.

    You’ve explained the journey from just starting out to being a regular runner so well and I know exactly what you mean about that virtuous feeling after a run. Thanks for the update and I’d love to hear about your running journey in the coming year.

    @Ras – Congratulations on getting started. As the elliptical trainer mimics walking / running then it could help if you use it gently on the occasional off (recovery) day. At the beginning of the plan you may prefer to have a gentle walk rather than a gym or weights session. As Bruce and Dee have explained above, after a while you’ll get a feel for what your body needs in terms of recovery. Proper rest days can help motivation as your going to be fresher for your next session and less likely to pick up injuries. There are some good running vids in YouTube so that might help with motivation too! Good luck.

  95. Carly says:

    I’ve been researching some running plans and just came across yours. I loved reading through all the comments! I’ve managed to get up to 30 plus minutes in the past, albiet slowly, but I know I pushed myself hard and as a result it often wasn’t very enjoyable. I’m older now [not by much!] and I’m going to take your advice and start slow this time – and take those rest days! Thanks for what looks like a very realistic plan, and thanks to everyone who has shared their questions, problems and achievements – I’ve found it very motivating. Tomorrow is day 1 of week 1.

  96. mark watts says:

    hi my wife and i, both mid forties, are on week 3 of the plan and doin fine except my wife struggles on the first two runs then runs alot better for the last two, any tips? thanks mark and jackie

  97. beginrunning says:

    @Carly -Glad you’ve found this motivating. Slow and steady is definitely the key. Good luck!

    @mark – Sounds like your wife hasn’t warmed up until the last two sessions, which makes the first two more of a struggle. Comment #74 by “Starting Over” suggested doing the walk sessions before the run sessions to help with warm up and maybe this could help. Perhaps slowing the first two run sessions might make it a bit easier. I know it takes me ages to get going and some days take longer to warm up than others!

  98. Sonja says:

    I really want to start the plan, but unfortunately I can only run two days a week! My schedule is jam packed and the day I am free my gym in closed ( I currently am living in a place where I can only run inside). The days I can run are Tues, Thurs, and Sunday. Have any suggestions for a way to start off on two days until I can run outside?

  99. beginrunning says:

    @Sonja – If you can only run twice a week you could try spreading the plan over a longer period. So your “week 1” schedule would be to run Tue, Thurs, Tue. Then “week 2” would be Thur, Tue, Thur.

    By the time you get to run outside you should be some way into the plan, but you can always go back a week or extend a week if you need to. HTH

  100. Slo says:


    Thanks for the tips, it has made getting from sofa into running shoes much less daunting. I’m currently stuck at week two! My problem isn’t my fitness as i cycle quite a lot but I’m having to skip days because of really painful shin splints. I’ve tried started running using the POSE method in order to avoid this type of thing, but i suspect that i may be doing it wrong and it may be aprt of the problem. The real question is, is it normal for begginers to suffer from shin splints from such a gradual build up?

  101. beginrunning says:

    @Slo – If your getting shin splints then you need to stop running completely and deal with those first. Although you’re skipping days this isn’t long enough to allow for full recovery and the underlying cause is still there to come back and bite!

    My preference would be to visit a physiotherapist first to identify the cause of the problem and work on their recommendations before returning to running. I realise The Pose approach may be different as they would see the problem as arising from incorrect running style and shoes. However if your going to follow this method then it’s important to do it correctly as you could make the injury worse. A Pose instructor would help in this case.

    Although program here uses a gradual build up it’s not uncommon to encounter problems such as shin splints early on as any biomechanical issues or weaknesses are exposed. It can be disheartening… and a bit painful, but you get to know your body even better πŸ™‚

    I’d be interested to hear which approach you follow and how you get on. Hope you recover soon.

  102. Holly says:

    started walk/jog somewhere between 3-4months ago….have worked up to 25 minutes walking followed by 15 minutes jogging (basically an approx. 3 mile loop) I’ve hit a plateau. Any suggestions to increase time jogging? I’m trying to avoid having to take steroids for asthma.

  103. RAS says:

    First thank you for this awesome Begin Running plan! This post is for everyone who sees this and says, should I do this? … I don’t know if I can. I am now beginning my 5th Week and this plan has been AWESOME! (Technically I am on Week 4: 7 min run/3 min walk; I repeated Week 3’s schedule because I didn’t get my full runs in for the week and felt the jump from 5 mins to 7 minutes would have been too great without proper preparation.)

    So I started as someone who hated running and weighing in at 230. I now look forward to my runs and I am down to 224. It may only be 6 pounds but at age 40, 6 pounds is like losing twice that at age 30.

    Here are some of my tips:
    – Get a good pair of running shoes! In Chicago we have a place called Fleet Feet, where they will look at how you run, measure your feet, look at your arches, and get a pair of shoes that is right for you.) I’m very flat-footed, so my shoes and extra support insert we key. So all you flat-footers, you can do this too! I spent about $140, which as my friend told me is enough to make you feel guilty if you don’t run, and sometimes that’s all the motivation you need.

    – Keep a daily journal. Mark down what your treadmill tells you: distance, calories burned, speed, etc. As you improve it is a great motivator. Also find some good motivational quotes and write them in your journal. has a “Daily kick in the butt” they can email you to provide some motivation.

    – Weigh yourself weekly. Track your progress. Eat better than you were before. I haven’t ditched all my bad eating habits, but getting rid of most of them helps. Trust me, I know I need to lose more weight because at 5’8″ and now 224 lbs, this is not a body built for running… but I am getting closer to one that is.

    – I am going to run my first 5K on May 1st. I have been telling everybody I know of my goal. this has helped keep me going. I don’t want to be seen as a quitter!

    – I think the longer runs, 7 minutes are actually easier to sustain than the 5 minute runs and 2.5 minute walks. I think once you are moving it easier to just keep moving than slowing down to walk. I also set my treadmill speed to SUSTAINABLE speeds, generally 3.3 walk/4.5 runs. It’s better to maintain apace you can run at than burn out and not be able to finish your run. ALSO, IGNORE EVERYONE ELSE AROUND YOU on the other treadmills. The temptation is to increase your speed like the people who have been running for a longer period of time. This will just set you up to fail your run. Set YOUR PACE, and SUSTAIN YOUR PACE.

    – Set your iPod or other MP3 player with songs timed to your workout. Have it change where your run/walk time changes, and keep the beat up to where your running pace should be.

    THANK YOU again for this great plan! If you are ready to begin, trust me, YOU CAN DO IT!!!

  104. beginrunning says:

    @Holly – Your doctor may have some suggestions regarding managing asthma during exercise without using steroids. From what you say I’m assuming you walk for 25 minutes and then run for 15 minutes. If this is the case then maybe as you approach your limit at around 15 mins your breathing becomes much harder, triggering your asthma.

    If your doctor agrees you could try starting this plan at week 5 which involves running 8 minutes, walking 2 minutes and repeating this 3 times. The idea is that by alternating running with walking you have time to recover and actually run for a longer period overall. This allows you to build up your aerobic capacity so you can run for a longer period without increasing your respiration rate. If Week Five of the plan is too difficult then try an earlier week. Another factor to consider is the speed at which you run. You may find running slower is helpful too. Good luck and let us know if you find anything useful for other runners with asthma.

    @RAS – Great progress and some excellent tips! As you say, tracking your progress is really helpful both for motivation and reward and I know what you mean about eating habits improving too. It seems like running kick starts a whole load of other healthier lifestyle changes. The tip about maintaining your own pace is really important. I always find it hard not to speed up when someone runs past me, even if I’m out for slow, relaxing session!

    Good luck with that 5K and thanks for taking time to post your ideas and words of encouragement. It will be really helpful for all those wondering if they should have a go.

  105. Dyanna says:

    Thank you so much for posting this running plan. I’ve tried others without sucess, but I started this in early January and am proud to say that I’m up to eight weeks and going strong! Something about this particular schedule is genius for me. Each time I easily get to the 5 minute mark now, I smile to myself, remembering the first couple of weeks and how intimidated I was to hit the 5 minute week. It seemed huge at the time. Today I ran my second day of the run 9/walk 2 week (your week 6), and I feel great. It seems amazing to me that I got here.

    I think for me, this works because of the 30 minute limit, and 3 days/wk. I found at other times starting out I would be so motivated and anxious to improve, that I did too much too soon. I tend to get shin splints, and that invariably derailed me after a few weeks into a running program. I’m using a treadmill, so I’m learning how to stay just under the splints – when I feel it coming on, I back off a couple points on the speed but keep to the plan. It works like magic. Then the next time I run, I can usually maintain the speed I want.

    I also repeated a week when I felt like I wasn’t strong enough to move on.

    I’ll keep you posted on my progress. After finishing this program, I want to gear up for some local summer 5ks.

    Thanks SO much!

  106. Holly says:

    thxs for suggestion to start with 8 minute intervals. I’m through my first week and it feels already like I’m past the plateau. Also, doc is completely behind me running. Next question, is there a device, watch, stop watch, etc that you can program to beep at the desired time intervals? Anything to make it as easy as possible would help.


  107. Stella says:

    In response to all the messages re: timing, I use my mobile phone (just a cheap nokia) which has a “countdown timer” application as part of the “organiser” icon.

    I just program in my 2minute/4minute periods on the interval timer, activate the “automatic continue to the next period” setting and stick it in my pocket. The phone then beeps at the end of every period and automatically goes on to the next one. Easy!

  108. Mark says:

    Can this plan be used for both treadmill and outdoor jogging? I ask because I do not run outside due to severe social anxiety. At what speed should I walk and run? I currently set the jogging speed at 6mph with a 2.5 incline. I set the walking speed at 4.0 with a 2.5 incline. Is this sufficient or should I alter this to simulate outdoor exercise?

  109. Margaret says:

    @beginrunning – thank you for the running plan. You must be pleased with all these motivational comments.

    I am a 42 year old, very overweight female and if I can do this anyone can! I am about to start Week 6 and pretty proud of myself so far.

    I have always been worried about my wobbly bits wobbling too much when I’m running. I also got embarrassed about they way I run (not a natural runner) and how slow I run.

    I signed up for a 5K for Cancer Research so straight away I have a goal plus I WANTED to run it and not walk it. You seriously need to want to be able to do this as I have only just realised it is about your mental AND physical ability.

    I purchased running shoes which weren’t too expensive but they make a huge difference. I may now invest in a better pair as I know I want to keep this up now. If you are running alone (which I chose to do in case I slowed someone down ;o) you really need to push yourself to get up and out which is not always easy and this is where the mental side of it comes in.

    Initially I waited until it was dark to run so that no-one would notice my big red face and wobbly bits! I am running outside (in freezing Scotland) but I always run by the side of main roads with lighting as you need to stay safe. Now my confidence is building, my breathing is getting better and I run in the daylight and I try to forget about everyone else around about me although I do tend to pick out quieter places to go running. I am still slow but I don’t care as I know my body needs to get used to the breathing and the impact of the running. I am sure that I will get faster in time.

    I also purchased a cheap plastic watch with a stopwatch (Β£2.50) to record my times and then it’s just me and my iPod and off I go. I am considering purchasing a Nike+ iPod sport kit (you don’t need Nike+ trainers to use this) now as you can upload the data from every run and monitor your progress. I never thought I would even consider anything like this. But I am. And it’s great. And I feel so much better for doing it. Don’t get me wrong ….. it’s not easy but it’s rewarding when you finish. Although I sometimes struggle through the runs I usually end each one with the thought that it wasn’t as bad as I anticipated.

    So on that note all I can say is β€œCarpe diem” ….. it’s time to β€œseize the day”! Good Luck.

  110. […] Easy start running plan – Run for 30 minutes in just 10 weeks I thought this site was informative. […]

  111. liz says:

    i started this almost two months ago and was halfway through the third week when suddenly ALL of my motivation dried up!
    i’m great with motivation to start something but after a little while i seem to just forget how important it was to me at the beginning… does anyone else experience this?
    any ideas on how to get through this rough patch next time i try? does it get easier after that point?
    great website by the way, i love how you take the time to answer peoples questions!

  112. […] previous breaks from running I’ve started at week 13 of the beginners running plan to get back into the swing of things. This time I’m going out for slow, 20 minute runs […]

  113. beginrunning says:

    Apologies for yet another long delay in replying!

    @Mark – You can use the plan for both a treadmill and outside. You could try setting the treadmill to simulate outdoor running and if this is too hard then go slower or adjust the settings.

    @Margaret – It’s great to hear your experience, it sounds like your hard work has not only improved your physical fitness but your self confidence too. Like you I enjoy running alone but, as you say, you do have to push a bit harder! Good luck with your 5k. It should be even more rewarding knowing its for a good cause.

    @Liz – This is pretty common and I’ve certainly suffered with lack of motivation. It really affected me when I’d just started but still gets me if I’m facing one of those nasty circuits sessions. It does get easier after a while, especially when running has become a habit.

    One thing in your favour is that your motivation didn’t dry up until half way through the third week rather than halfway through the third session! Next time you can’t get motivated to go out, just get your running shoes on and tell yourself your only doing a walk warm up and run for 3 minutes (or whatever a single running period is for the week your on). If you do the whole session that’s great, but if you only do 3 minutes then that’s better than nothing at all and you’ve won an important psychological battle having at least achieved something. Glad you like the website – HTH

  114. RAS says:

    Well, I did it. On May 1, 2010, I completed my first 5k Run. At age 40, I have now done something I have never done before … running further than ever before. (Even in high school we never ran more than a mile or mile and a half.) And I am so glad I did!

    It wasn’t pretty, and I set no land-speed records; finishing in 42:00, which did include about two stretches of quick walking for 1/4 and then 1/2 mile. But it was a personal best, and I am able to sustain my runs longer than when I began the program in January walking 2 mins. and running 2 mins.

    I still struggle at times, more with my breathing rhythm than leg fatigue. I get so winded … probably since I am still carrying 215 lbs. on my 5’8″ frame — however that is down from 230 lbs. when I began 15 weeks ago.

    In addition to running, I have been alternating workouts in the fitness room on the elliptical, bicycle, and rowing machines as well as group bootcamp-type exercise sessions.

    So while it was a challenge to do my first 5k, I know it will be MUCH easier this time next year. My plan going forward is to participate in one 5k Run each month, continuing to improve my endurance and speed. Thank you for providing such a great plan for beginning runners!

  115. beginrunning says:

    @RAS – Congratulations on that PB! You really made great progress. It certainly feels good being able to run further than when your were young too! As you say, it will get easier if your weight drops further but you already made good progress. With the extra cross training you’ll enjoy some improvement all round. Thanks for letting us know about your progress, it’s a real inspiration.

  116. Yll Bajrami says:

    I just finish my first run it was great.My question is what can i drink after the Run and what is good to eat after run.


  117. beginrunning says:

    @Yll Bajrami – Glad to hear you enjoyed your first run. For a post run drink plain water is fine, but not too cold! If you’ve been sweating a lot then any of the sports/ isotonic drinks is fine or you can make your own diluting some fruit juice to taste in 1 litre of water and adding a small pinch of salt. This will give you some carbs too. As for post run food then you can reward yourself with a favourite snack – as long as it’s a healthy one! If your trying to lose weight then you don’t want too many calories. Include some protein to help with muscle repair. I often use whey protein shakes after a run or workout but they can lead to some embarrassing gas .

  118. Bridget says:

    Before starting this program I was able to run for 15 minutes straight (at 9km/hr) on the treadmill but that was an absolute struggle and I felt like dying afterwards!
    Ive just started on week 3 and although it’s obviously a bit more challenging than the previous week it feels good and I’m really enjoying it.
    This is a great workout plan. Hopefully I’ll do okay with the next week.
    Thanks very much for posting this.

  119. Jen says:

    I just wanted to say a big thank you for the programme. I’ve just completed week 10, and I’ve still got 4 weeks until my first 5K (Race for Life). The good news is I’m nowrunning 5K in the 30 mins, when I first started it was more like 3.5 – so it just goes to show how much progress can be made when you stick at something!

    I managed to get through the programme with only one setback around week 4 – when I really struggled to run for more than 5 mins after I’d been on my feet at work all day. Sadly, that means getting up very early to run before work now, but it works much better for me that way.

    Things that have helped me:
    Music! I tried the suggestion of putting songs on my iPhone that fit the timings of the training, and that helped. Now I’m running for 30 mins straight, I create different playlists to keep my interest going – and I time the music to fit specific parts of the route (like a really loud song to get me up a particular hill, or something really motivational for the last 5-10 mins!) Need to be careful about not running to the beat of the music – which can really mess up your pace!

    Runkeeper – an iPhone/iPod app that tracks your time, distance, pace and so much more. Uploads it to their website and there’s graphs and all sorts you can look at. Only problem is if your GPS signal is too weak, it won’t work – which does happen on occasion πŸ™

    I think I’m getting the ‘bug’ now. For the first few weeks it was a chore, I really had to motivate myself to get out there (maybe the weather didn’t help!) but now I’m actually finding myself looking forward to my next run and the desire to do it far outweighs any desire to sit on the sofa and watch TV!

    It hasn’t been all plain sailing. I’ve had times where I really wanted to stop along the route and walk back home, or miss one because I’ve had a bad day at work, etc. But having a goal and a specific deadline has been a tremendous help. No matter how hard it gets, I hold on to the sense of achievement and how good I feel after a run, and that gets me through.

    It’s not always hard, though – some of the runs have been positively easy and pleasant! Always end on a positive note!

  120. […] also following a 10 week plan to allow my body to become accustomed to the stresses and challenges of running. For each week, I […]

  121. RAS says:

    Just checking in to add an update to my previous posts for any newcomers debating whether this whole “running thing” is a good idea.

    I’m 40 years old. I just ran my second 5K on June 19th. My first was May 1st. My goal was to finish around 36:00. My first was 42:00. I finished at 36:40, so pretty close to my mark. Even though I’ve gotten better at running a 5K distance in practice without stopping, on this particular race day, I did find myself walking a bit to catch my breath after a hill at about the 2.75 mile mark. (Who put that stupid hill in there anyway?) So I won’t beat myself up too much, but it makes me say, “Why didn’t you just keep going???” They say this running thing is mostly mental, and there’s another example.

    I haven’t lined up my 5K for July yet but I will shoot for a time under 33:00. I’d prefer to hit under 30:00, but I’m not sure if I will get there.

    Another positive side effect, weight loss. Before I started doing any exercise back in January, I was around 230 lbs (maybe 232, but I seriously have blocked that out so I don’t for sure and I wasn’t tracking my weight back then). I’m now at 212, so I’ve lost close to 20 pounds. I’ve bought a few new shirts, size L instead of XL, and a new belt… the other one didn’t have enough holes on the smaller side. I’m also getting more frequent comments from people about the weight I’ve lost, so this is very rewarding.

    I have to admit, it hasn’t been all running, I run maybe once or twice a week for distance, but twice a week for an hour I’m doing a bootcamp style workout with a local group, and that has been great too. I’m eating better, smaller portions, but eating out is still a huge hurdle in my very busy life.

    Thanks again for a great plan! You got me started on my way to “Maintaining a Healthy and Active Life” (as I like to say), and I can’t thank you enough. You have made a positive difference in my life.

  122. Lurch says:

    Once I reach the 30 mintute stage, how long should I sustain that level before increasing my time? Is it better on the body to remain on that stage for a while (6 months to a year) to allow my joints and muscles to grow stronger or should I just keep increasing weekly by 10% as long as my body is in no pain and I am not struggling.

    In case this helps: I am 6’6 inches tall, at a normal weight and a non-smoker. I jog two of my 3 runs on the treadmill and the final jog I run outdoors.

    Any suggestions would be appreciated. Both from the author and any random guests who happen to read this question.

  123. beginrunning says:

    Thanks to everyone who recently commented.

    @Bridgette I hope you continued to enjoy the program and got to where you wanted to be.

    @Jen Great to hear from you again and thanks for the useful tips. I love the idea of matching parts of a playlist to parts of the route and you make some really helpful suggestions re motivation. As you say, it’s important to end on a positive note. It makes it easier to run the next time enthusiasm is lacking as you know your going to feel better whatever you’ve achieved. I hope your first 5km was fun.

    @RAS Seems like your enjoying running and getting faster too. I find the hills always seem to be in the wrong place too! Doing other types of exercise really makes things interesting and I think it’s beneficial for improving general fitness/health. Thanks for the update and encouragement for those wondering if they should try the plan.

    @Lurch Everyone is different so when you feel ready to increase then have a go see how you get on. I gave it a week before I increased but 2 weeks may be safer. If you want to wait longer then that’s OK too. If your increasing your running time then you may be comfortable trying more than 10 percent but as you say, you have to listen to your body. I increased by approx. 33 percent to 40 minutes, however after about three weeks of regular 40 minute runs I started to get some knee pain. The pain was down to biomechanical issues and some strengthening exercises and a physio dealt with that OK. In retrospect I should have been more careful and I had to stop running for a while .HTH and good luck.

  124. jessica says:

    im 11 years old. my height is 4ft 9 and i weigh 108 pounds. i have little muchsle. i want to know if thats a healthy weight for a 11 year old to have. and if its not i want to do this program.

  125. little nik says:

    hi i am about to start this plan i am a little nervous as i haven’t really run before. i am on the overweight catergory but not by much so hopefully i can improve my weight. i do alot of walkin as i walk to and from work everyday so i hope i will be able to at least run home from work one day

  126. beginrunning says:

    @jessica – I’m sorry but I can’t tell you if your weight is healthy for your age as you would need to see a Doctor or other health professional for that sort of advice. If your concerned about your weight then you could also talk this through with a parent, guardian or teacher as a starting point. Muscles tend to grow more as you get older so there’s plenty of time before you need to worry about those!

    It’s important for everyone to check with their doctor before they start this running plan in case they have any health issues that could cause a problem. The plan can help people lose weight but would need to be used along with a healthy diet to have that effect. Again this is something a professional could help you with. I’m sorry I cant be more helpful but I don’t want to suggest something that might be harmful.

    I think you’ve made a great start in taking responsibility for your health. With that approach I’m sure you’ll be successful in getting fitter and managing your weight if that’s needed. I hope your able to get some good advice and it would be great to get some updates on your progress. Good Luck!

    @little nik – Good luck starting the plan, lots of people are nervous when they start regular running for the first time, so your not alone. Fitting the plan into your existing routine is a good idea as it should make it a bit easier – and every little helps!

  127. Kirk says:

    I agree with the Admin comment made on December 21st 2007. Something happens once you complete the 9 minute stage at week 6 that makes running less of a chore. That was a dangerous stage for me because it was tempting to run much further that the plan called for. I repressed that urge because I am desperate to avoid injuries. It pays off in the end to take it slow and easy while still challenging yourself.

    9 weeks is a very short amount of time in hindsight. Good luck to all.

  128. railhead says:

    so my twins are going to be Juniors in high school and they made me a challenge that before they start college in 2 years they want us as a family to run a marathon! I am 35 and overweight although i was a great runner in high school track that was 17 years ago this plan looks like a great start but can you help me build a plan for the next 2 years so i can run a marathon at the end!!!!

  129. subrata says:

    i want to run 1600 meter in 6minite then please suggest me what type of plan or schedule i need .our track is 200 meter please reply soon

  130. beginrunning says:

    @Kirk – It’s a strange experience as new runner and is so tempting to go over the top. I think you hit the nail on the head saying 9 weeks is a short amount of time.

    @railhead – There’s nothing like a challenge to help motivation! A 2 year marathon plan is a bit beyond the scope of a short reply here and depends on if you want to run all the way, run and walk or if you have a target time.

    Once you’ve completed the beginners plan the you could start by doing 2 – 3 runs a week of 20 -30 mins with one long run per week. On the first month your long run could be 45 mins. The following month (or stretch this over a longer period if preferred) increase the long run to 60 mins. From here it depends on you goal but you could continue until you get to a long run of 90 minutes. Then you can consolidate for a period before building up distances slowly again. Eventually you’ll be doing long runs that vary in distance from week to week of between 10 and 20 miles. As usual, add on strength, speed and flexibility routines.

    You’ve got a lot in your favor as there’s 2 years before the race, you were a great runner in high school and your only 35! For an easy to follow marathon plan The Non-Runner’s Marathon Trainer is good.

    @subrata – Great question but I don’t have the knowledge to give you a good answer! A couple of points are worth mentioning though. If you’ve never done any running before then you want to build up slowly and the plan here will help get you started and improve your aerobic capacity. You need to be able to run continuously for 30 minutes anyway.

    Since your targeting 1600m in 6 minutes you’ll be running faster than most people following this plan and you’ll have to deal with lactic acid a lot sooner than those of us following a sedate running program! Including intervals in your training schedule will help with this – e.g 4x200m with 100m jog recovery (run 200m fast, then jog for 100m to recover. Repeat 4 times). This is just a basic example and there are lots of different intervals and training plans. This website might give you some workout ideas but go easy at first as you can’t run if you get injured! You’ll also want to improve running specific strength so can include resistance exercise on some days too. Good Luck

  131. Kyle says:

    hi again, well i just thought i’d let you know that my plans for the year didnt go to plan and i am unable to run my citybay fun run in 2 weeks. My health with the cystic fibrosis has been playing up and i have suffered with a few sever chest infections and now am on some medications that have a side effect of achilles tendernitis. :(….I will run it one day thou :P.

  132. Mark says:

    I just finished week 10 today. This was a great program. I plan on maintaining 30 minutes for another 2-4 weeks until attempting to do more. Ultimately, I would like to build my endurance so I can run 40-60 minutes. 30 minutes goes by too quickly and I can feel myself starting to want more.

    I also recommend this website which is a great way to map potential and current routes for your jog,

    It provides milage, elevation and Google Earth, gps technology. I am always on the lookout for safe places to run. With the Google Earth view, you can determine which streets have sidewalks and wide shoulders. You can also bookmark the routes you create and add them to your “favorites” on Internet Explorer.

    This is a link to a route I created, When you change the view to “hybrid” you will see a Google Earth view. The route takes me directly over a local lake and the view is amazing.

    Thank you, BeginRunning, for this great running plan.

  133. Sharon says:

    I am just starting to run and enjoying it although my breathing is a major problem………I am 40 and thought I was reasonably fit. Please give me some advice on how to lose weight. I am 5ft 5inch and just over 9 stones……………

  134. melissa says:

    I just started the plan, and it’s going great. I am not overweight, but does can running get rid of a little extra fat?

  135. beginrunning says:

    @Kyle – Sorry to hear your plans for the fun run didn’t work out. The medication sounds really unpleasant. I hope things improve soon and your able to start running. Thanks for the update and good luck!

    @Mark – Glad you liked the plan. That 60 minute run isn’t far away! I can’t see your route as that website was not working when I checked.

    @Sharon – It’s important a doctor confirms it’s safe for you to run, especially as you say your breathing is a major problem.

    One common issue when people start running is that they run too fast and get out of breath quickly. I did this for some time but didn’t realise until I used a heart rate monitor and saw how high my heart rate was when I was meant to be doing an easy run. You don’t need expensive gadgets, just make sure you can hold a conversation while running. If you run alone then you may get some funny looks to begin with but this will help you get used to an easy running speed.

    Warming up is also important and you’ll be a bit breathless when you start a session. A 5 minute walk before the run can be a help. A little breathlessness is a good thing as it means your working hard!

    I’m not really the person to give weight loss advice although I’ll write a post soon on my partners experience combining a diet plan and the beginners running plan. Generally, weight loss requires a calorie restricted diet in addition to exercise.

    @Melissa – Running can help reduce fat. All running burns calories while long, slow, aerobic running (as in the plan) can result in the body burning fat for fuel if you run for long enough.

  136. Megan says:

    How do you know when to move on to the next week, or to extend the current one longer? I am at the end of week one, and I get quite breathless while running, but do not have to stop. It isn’t easy, but I can do it. Should I move on to week two? or keep with week one (if so, until when?)?
    Another question, I get cramps when I run (around my ribs) how can i prevent this?

  137. liberated4life says:

    how many days in a week i should run?

  138. beginrunning says:

    @Megan – Many people find they can move on to the following week immediately but it’s OK to take longer if you want. As you’ve finished week one and don’t have to stop while running then try week 2. You will get a bit breathless and it shouldn’t be too easy. As you gradually increase the demands on your body and mind, week by week they adapt so you become fitter and stronger. If you do experience pains or worrying symptoms then you should stop and get medical advice. It’s recommended to get a health check first just to make sure it’s safe to run.

    Running cramp around the ribs (AKA stitches) can be caused by a number of things e.g. running too soon after eating, dehydration, running too fast and even landing awkwardly. If you eliminate some of these you may find they’re not such a problem, especially after you’ve run for a few weeks, although every runner gets them now and again. If you walk for a while they should ease but the proviso of seeking medical attention if you experience any ‘unusual’ pain applies. Good luck with Week 2 and the rest of the plan.

    @liberated4life – For this plan run 3 days a week but always have at least a one day break between each running day.

  139. Sam says:

    Am 50 and have been walking and working out since about mid June very consistently….have not lost much weight yet, but feel much better with more energy and stamina. Feel ready to start running now. Thanks for the plan and the feedback.

  140. Chris says:

    I really like the idea behind this program. I’ve been looking for a running routine that doesn’t start you off on a running schedule that will doom you for failure. With that said, I’m about to start this next week. Do you have any recommendations as when a good time to run might be (morning/afternoon/evening)? I was considering doing it when I get up in the mornings before class and work.

  141. beginrunning says:

    @Sam – I’m sure the preparation will be helpful and consistency will make a big difference too. Good luck with plan and weight loss.

    @ Chris – Whichever time suits you is OK although it’s best not run straight after a meal. Many people enjoy an early run before work so you’ll be in good company! It’s worth having light snack or piece of fruit around 30 minutes before you run, especially if you suffer with low blood sugar. My favorite time is around 10.30 am and I’m lucky enough to be able to fit this in with my schedule. Hope you enjoy the plan and good luck.

  142. Todd says:

    I have pains on my inner lower shin bone on both legs even by touch. I run the pain there, I climb stairs the pain there, I jump the pain there. I have taken 3 months off from running to let my legs heal. I have purchased 140 dollars running shoes to no prevail. So i started trouble shooting my legs , what is odd i run with my shoes on my shins hurt and drive me mad. so i decided to remove my shoes and run in my socks and the pressure and pain was 80 times better.
    I’am in great shape
    185 lb

  143. Timberwolff says:

    I’m 66 and have been walking 2-3 miles 3-4 times a week. I hope it is ok to use your program. I have added a little running to my walking, but I don’t want to push it too hard too fast. I has been like this:

    slow walk 1/4 mile warm up
    very fast walk 1 1/2 miles
    run 1/4 mile
    Repeat above until I have gone 2-3 miles.

  144. Aaron says:

    I just googled “just starting to run” and came across this site. Its really amazing that you’ve been keeping up with this blog for years! I’m 21, and have been smoking about a 1/3 pack a day as well as a decent amount of cannabis since I was 16. I’ve been smoke free for 2 weeks now, and running has helped significantly! The feeling of accomplishment after a good run is life changing! These comments are filled with awesome advice; I really appreciate this service you are providing for all of us beginners!

  145. beginrunning says:

    @Todd – Glad you found a solution as you were really suffering. It’s interesting to hear going barefoot solved your problems straight away.

    There are quite a few barefoot / low profile shoes available which give your feet more protection than just socks, especially if you risk running over broken glass, sharp stones or biohazards πŸ™‚ I now use lower profile shoes for some running but go barefoot in the gym.

    @Timberwolff – Your right not to push too hard too fast but you’ve already made a good start so it should be OK to use the program. Good luck!

    @Aaron Congratulations on giving up smoking, it’s surprising how quickly everything improves especially once you start running. I’m a bit envious though as I was in my mid forties before I gave up. That feeling of accomplishment you describe is like icing on the cake and was a real surprise for me – it’s certainly been life changing!

    I’m glad you’ve found the site useful and it’s great that people take time to post their comments, experiences and suggestions.

  146. Steve says:

    I’m in the UK and have been running solo for a few months but never really improved, here in the UK most city coucils now offer a free training session for beginners who are looking to get fitter. My advice is go and find out what courses are available, it really does help when there are others in the same position. Everbody encourages each other and the improvement does come. Good Luck. Steve.

  147. Sam says:

    I was injured in Iraq and have finally (after 18 months) been released by the doc to start running again. I found your program through google but really like it. Not having run in a while I’m kinda mixed on getting back out there, on the one hand I’ve gained around 40 pounds since I got back and need to get back in shape quickly…released by the doc means back to being a soldier in a few months. On the other hand I’m not looking forward to working back up to 5-6 mile runs…it’s gonna hurt.
    Your program looks great for my girlfriend and me, I don’t like running on the track so timing it allows me to get out on the road and start running, and since it starts really slow she will go run with me and I won’t be so quick to jump the gun and risk re-injury.
    Looks great and I can’t wait to start the program when I get back home.

  148. Sophie Swain says:

    i have been teaching myself to run for about a month now, I have been running 4 minutes and walking 1 minute 6 times per run for the last 4 weeks. One run per week I run for 9 minutes and then walk for 1 minute. In each interval I have been doing different speeds that has allowed my comfortable pace to increase slightly. As I am already 4 weeks in would you suggest I start your programme at week 4? I really want to build my stamina. Also I have been running more than 3x per week sometimes 6x – is this too much?
    Thanks in advance

  149. beginrunning says:

    @ Steve – Running or training with others can be a great motivator, especially if enthusiasm is waning. As you say, it’s a real help when your with others in the same position and I know some people who hate running on their own.

    @ Mark – Regular stretching makes a real difference and I’m now having a few twinges that could probably have been avoided if I’d been a bit more disciplined. Although I stretch after every workout I’ve got a habit of rushing some, so those 20 second holds turn into 12 seconds.

    @Sam – Glad to hear your making a recovery. It must be daunting prospect having to get back to the level of fitness you need. The timing aspect does make this more flexible than distance plans and I struggled with those a bit when I first started. I hope the program helps and is fun for you both too!

    Good luck with your return to full health and it would be great to hear how you get on and any ideas you have.

    @ Sophie – You seem to have got off to a good start and you could try starting at week 4 and see how it goes. As your already running a total of 24 minutes in some sessions it shouldn’t be too much of a problem. If it’s a struggle it’s likely your going too fast. As you’ve been increasing your comfortable pace you’ll probably find you need to go a bit slower than this.

    With this plan the trick is to keep it slow, running at a pace where you can hold a conversation. This can be hard as we naturally tend to run too fast but it allows you to build aerobic capacity and give your body time to adapt and strengthen. With this fitness base you can then go on to improving speed, stamina, distance, strength and training different energy systems although many are happy to maintain fitness with 2 or 3 easy, 30 minute runs per week. Once you can run continuously for 30 mins you’ll find your stamina has improved as you’ll have a more efficient cardiovascular system. You’ll be able to do a bit more for a bit less and recover faster too!

    To begin with 6 times a week is probably too much as you need recovery time to let the body adapt. Insufficient rest days are more likely to slow your progress or halt it if you get injured. This is especially true if you are just starting or are an older runner.

    You’ve got off to a flying start and I hope you enjoy getting to week six and beyond!

  150. Bob says:

    Does anybody have a way i could get to the amount of running for week 10 a bit faster, because i’m already in great shape, but a swimmer, not a runner. My heart rate is about 54 and my BP is about 115 over 58.

  151. beginrunning says:

    @Bob – As you’ve already got a good level of fitness then you could try starting at a later stage but there’s a few things to bear in mind. Apologies if you know all the following already! Although you’ve got a good aerobic base from swimming as this is a different activity your anaerobic threshold may be lower. Since your already fit you may run too fast so find a starting stage you can complete at conversation pace. While your heart and lungs can probably handle the load your feet, legs and back may not which could mean beginning at an earlier stage than you can manage to allow time for them to adapt. This will depend on a number factors including what sort of feet you have, your gait, posture etc but you may be lucky and be a natural runner with few issues! Short strides with the slow pace will help here. I guess this is the drawback of starting running when your already fit as most people beginning this plan lack of aerobic fitness creates a limit, helping prevent excessive demands on muscles, joints and ligaments. It would be interesting hear which week you find best to start from.

  152. Raechel says:

    Hello I have a question about week 10 (sorry if it is a stupid one ; are we supposed to run 30 minutes twice? (i’m only on week 1 but am finding it really motivating and it’s great to be back running after a5 year break after having my little boy) thanks a lot for your help

  153. beginrunning says:

    @Raechel At week 10 run 30 mins once. Great to hear you’re back running after a break – hope the plan helps.

  154. Heather K. says:

    I just started a plan similiar to this that was an app for my ipod. So far so good! What I motivated to comment was all the great advice and support that people are giving each other on here! It’s great to see people helping each other to become healthier or finding new means of exercise! If I can do it, then I know that others can be just as, if not more so, successful! Keep going!

  155. Amanda says:

    Just did week 1 day 1! excited to get my heart in shape!

  156. Stephen J says:

    I started doing this and I was on week 5 getting ready to start week 6 but yesterday during my run I ran for 10 minutes and didn’t feel tired or out of breath so I kept going then I was at 15 then 22 and stopped to walk 3 minutes then ran 5 more to complete my 30. My question is if I ran for 22 minutes and felt pretty good about it should I just keep doing it and add additional minutes till I hit 30 or should I go back to week 6? Also just wanted to say with people who get shin splints buy a really good pair of shoes, I recommand anything Nike with the Nike+ band it has changed the way I run.

  157. Ceci B says:

    Today was my first attempt at running again. Started by running one lap, walking another, repeating this process four times. What are your thoughts on this process. Can I still work up to my goal of the 5K, by doing this until the 1/4 mile gets easy then moving up to the 1/2 mile until that gets easy and so on. Appreciate any feedback. I want to run in memory of my sister who died waiting for a lung transplant. That is my motivation.

  158. Stephen J says:

    Ceci B I am sorry to hear about your sister. I found running by time is easyer then running by distance. Try to get your body use to moving for 30 minutes at a time. speed and distance will come. The program above helped me out alot, I made it to week 6 and now I can run for 30 minutes with out stopping. I started at speeds of 5.5mph but I am getting ready to bump it to 6mph and will continue to bump the speed till
    I hit 7mph for 30min. Also good news is thers is alot of information you can find in the posts above. I hope this helped you and good luck.

  159. KAPIL says:

    i am kapil kumar from India i am a champion of 1500m race at national level but unfortunately due to an accident my leg bone break it was 2007 now i m ok but i have a rode in bone. can any one tel me that how i should start or i can get my old performance.

  160. raechel says:

    Me again – just started week 6 and am feeling great – really motivated and so is my 5 year old who rides his bike along with me!! Only problem is that I have had no weight loss however can feel the muscles developing in my legs and abs.
    Can’t wait to hit 30 mins!! good luck to everyone!

  161. beginrunning says:

    @Amanda – Hope you continued with the rest of the plan and your heart is more in shape.

    @Stephen J I expect you’ve found the answer by now but, for reference, if you find your able to run 22 mins at week 5 then it’s still probably beneficial to go from Week 6. Although you’re capable of running for a longer time, cutting the recovery periods too quickly means your increasing the total amount of running time during the week which can be detrimental. It’s possible you could get away with increasing from 22 minutes as everyone is different and a number of factors will determine how quickly your body adapts, but for a beginners program gradual progression is less likely to result in injury and more likely to help you achieve your goal.

    @Cecil B I’m sorry to hear of your loss. Running in memory of your Sister is sure to bring extra dimension to your achievements. You could use a plan based on distance for example week 1 as your current session then week 2 could be 600m run, 400m walk 4 times. Then week 3 800m run, 200m walk, 4 times and so on. But as Stephen J said, time based plans are easier and more flexible as they adapt to the individual rather than the other way round. Whichever approach you choose I hope it goes well.

    @Kapil Glad you’ve recovered from your accident. With your circumstances it would be wise to get some advice from both your orthopedic surgeon and physiotherapist about specific issues with running. There may be some additional exercises they can recommend. I imagine that a more gentle progression than you’re used to would be wise! The following post from a guy returning to running with an intramedullary rod may be helpful. Good luck.

    @Raechel Thanks for the update. You’ve made great progress and it sounds like your 5 year old is enjoying your running too! As you run for a longer period you’ll burn more calories so that should help play a part in any weight loss plan. Keep us posted.

  162. Mathew Jacob says:

    I am 46 started seriously jogging 14 days back – i used to run on and off before – did 4 K in 28:25 minutes today. Am i doing good?

  163. beginrunning says:

    @Mathew Jacob – Sounds good to me Mathew!

  164. James says:

    I have been following the plan (on week 5) which I think is great but for some reason I find I can do the plan fairly easily at night time but If i try in the day I get tired quick and unable to complete the full 30 minutes?

  165. jayne says:

    hi there,
    I have started running today for the first time in about 15 years. I used to love running, but as I have got older and had children it hurts a lot more than it used to. But I feel a need to keep myself fit and strong. I hope that I can stick to the plan and see health benefits sooner rather than later. I need to burn belly fat and pronto, I don’t like diets. I have suffered with frequent colds this year and I think it is because I am not fit like i used to be and tired due to having three small children.
    I am hoping that running will help me feel energised. I have been on a very short run tonight and it has given me some energy ( amazing).

  166. Rachel says:

    Hi there..
    Thanks for posting all this information.

    I am near 40 after two kids and a beginner to the treadmill although i have some low level lfitneas from a cross trainer (only 15min ‘runs twice a week). I am aiming to do a 10km run in London in July. I have about 14 weeks to train. Do you think I should just start your 5k programme now? Will it leave enough time to work towards the 10 km? I’m wondering how/ when you make the move from walk/running to run/running?!

  167. beginrunning says:

    @James – There could be a number of reasons to explain this but maybe it’s because your body is used to running at the same time each day. Everyone seems to have a favorite time to run and if you get into a habit of running at the same time it can feel tiring at other times. Another possibility is that when running during the day you may be low on fuel e.g running before lunch, especially if it’s been a long time since breakfast! You could try consuming some carbs one hour before you run to see if that helps.

    @Jayne – Glad to hear you feel energized after your first run. Your right, getting old isn’t much fun but a lot easier when you feel fitter. Good luck with the plan.

    @Rachel – If your doing 15 min sessions on the cross trainer then you’ve already started building some aerobic fitness. If your planning a 10k in 14 weeks then this plan would only get you some way towards it. However it will get your running continuously for 30 mins and the distance covered depends on how fast you run! This could be 5k but may be less (around 4k). Realistically the plan is unlikely to leave you enough time to ‘comfortably’ run 10k as you’d need to double (or more) the time/distance 2 weeks later. Many people find the next stage after the plan is running 45 mins.

    If you do decide to use the plan then, even though you’ve got some aerobic fitness, it would be wise to start at stage one as your feet, legs, back and body aren’t used to running and picking up an injury early on may mean you can’t do the 10k at all. If possible try to get some sessions outside on the terrain you’ll be doing the 10k. For treadmill sessions you could set a slight incline to make the demands more similar to outdoors running. If all goes to plan and you’re running 30 mins by the end then you may find you can run for a bit longer in 14 weeks. To complete 10k you could try walking parts of it.

    Not sure what you mean by the move from walk/running to run/running but the plan reduces the walk periods over time until you’re running continuously. After this you can increase time spent running and/or include some intervals. Let me know if this doesn’t answer the question. Good luck with the 10k!

  168. Schroeder says:


    I finished my first β€œ30 minute run once and celebrate!” yesterday after starting the program in February.

    I want to thank you for posting this blog, as it has been very helpful in meeting my goal. In the past, I have walked and used an elliptical for fitness, but I always thought running would be better for me. I just did not know where to start until I found your webstie. Now, I am now able to run 30 minutes without stopping and I have lost a little over 10 pounds.

    A few thoughts and tips for others

    I did all of the training on a treadmill. It helped me to write down the intervals using the notes feature on my IPod so I knew when I was supposed to run and when I supposed to rest/walk. This was especially helpful in week 3 with the 2.5-minute walks.

    Keep a log of your workouts. After every workout, I would write the distance covered and calories burned off of the treamill, along with the date. It was motivating for me to see how I was covering more distance and buring more calories every workout.

    The first five weeks I started with the walking part and then did the running part. This seemed to help me warm up. I always did a 5-minute cool down at the end (most treadmills automatically do this anyway).

    The biggest key to my success was not running too fast. I was very discouraged the first couple of weeks, but then I slowed down a couple of tenths on the treadmill and things went much better. There were also times when I knew I could run longer, but I followed your advice to keep to the rest cycles.

    I ran 2.8 miles during my 30 minute run yesterday. I am running my first 5K in about a month, so I am going to spend the next month working on increasing my speed and increasing my running time.

    Thanks again.

  169. beginrunning says:

    @Schroeder – Congratulations – Not only fitter but 10 pounds lighter too! It’s good to hear the blog has been helpful. Some great tips there – the iPod note will be useful as many people get a bit lost remembering some of the walk/run intervals, I know I did. Keeping a log is also a helpful, especially when you add other info like calories burned. On those ‘bad’ days it’s really motivating to see your progress written down.

    You mentioned starting with the walking part which is definitely the best way to approach it. I’ll amend the plan when I get time so a warm-up comes first.

    It’s interesting to hear that not running too fast was your key to success. This seems to be an issue that gets everyone.

    Thanks for posting your experiences and tips and good luck with increasing speed, distance and that 5k!

  170. swee says:

    Two more runs to 30 mins! I am excited especially because it is about 8 years after my ACL reconstructive surgery and I’ve tried several times but have never succeeded in running 3 miles on my own. I gave up on running for years until I saw this plan and thought I should try again.

    The program is great and it helps me to overcome my fear of injury. Running slower also really helps.

    I’ve lost close to 10lbs after starting the program.

    One question I have is how should I go about increasing from running 3 days to 4 days a week? I’d like to run 4 times a week to start the “Non runner’s marathon trainer” program.

    Thanks alot for the plan!

  171. beginrunning says:

    @swee – Great to hear the plan has helped you return to running. It must be an even sweeter feeling reaching the end of plan having overcome earlier injuries. Losing 10 pounds is nice bonus too!

    When you finish the plan you can increase to four days by running two consecutive days. I try to run Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Sunday. Where Sunday is a long run and Thursday is speed / intervals and Friday is an easy run. Unfortunately life often gets in the way and the plan goes out of the window. It’s good to follow a hard day (either in terms of distance or intensity) with a day off or just an easy recovery run (even slower and shorter than normal). I didn’t include intervals until I could run at an easy pace for 60 minutes and still stick to this if returning from a break due to illness.

  172. Kelly says:

    Hi there. This is a great site and I really appreciate the effort you put in to answering everyone’s questions! I was hoping if you could advise me on something. I started to run last year during May and June, aiming to run 30 minutes straight. At first I was unable to, probably because I was going to fast, but a friend of mine who is a runner suggested I go at a really slow speed. He said it didn’t matter how far I went, just to do 30 minutes and gradually increase my speed.

    Since then, I have stopped running because of previous commitments. In January I started hot yoga and hot pilates, and I do those classes about 4 times a week (back to back). So I wouldn’t say my cardio is that great considering yoga and pilates are not that aerobic.

    Two weeks ago I tried running the path I used to run last year and I was unable to run the whole way. I had to pause for walking breaks. I am determined to start running again as I want to incrase my cardio abilities.

    Should I do what I did last year and just start out with a very slow pace for 30 minutes? Or should I try the plan you’ve suggested and start out with a run-walk plan?


  173. beginrunning says:

    @Kellly – I’d suggest using the run-walk plan but then I’m a bit biased πŸ™‚

    It seems like you’re doing that in a way by including walking breaks. Using the plan just provides more structure with defined progressions and targets. The walk recovery periods let you maximize the total running time in a session and stimulates aerobic adaptation. The gradual increase in time spent running gives your body a chance to adapt but still keep progressing without overdoing it.

    Generally it’s better to start at the beginning of the plan, especially after a long break. Some people returning after a break start at a later stage (that feels comfortable) and progress from there. At least those yoga and pilates sessions will have given you a strong core to help you along!

  174. Hasan says:

    Hello My friend..

    Thanks for your great program , i’m in week 2 and i would like to ask if is it OK to feel a headche at the end ?

    i’m running after my work day around 7 PM because i can’t run at morning

    so what do you think ? should i have some sleep between 5 and 7 PM ?

    please advice me


  175. beginrunning says:

    @Hasan – If your getting a headache then it’s better to stop running and get checked by a doctor. It could be something simple like dehydration or postural problems causing tension in the shoulders and neck, but it’s better to be safe than sorry.

    I hope the doctor sorts out your headache and you can get back to the plan soon. Good luck.

  176. Candy says:

    Hi. I am planning to go for 6 K marathon for a charity in JULY. Been running off lately in and out . I would like to know if this programme would allow me to lose weight. I am not in best shape now. I am heavier on my lowerbody. I don’t really like to use treadmill but i think i am loving the outdoor running though i cant run too long cos i gotta grasp to catch up with my breathe. I am doing cross training – spinning & running on alternate days so i dont get bored easily. I also do bodypump classes just recently. And thought of doing a strength training session maybe for 30 mins or so twice a week. On all this, am planning to take up bellydance class which i heard it can lose weight.
    Does this programme help me to lose weight and how can i be a better runner ?

  177. Sandy Lou says:

    Hello, I must say this is a really good plan, im motivating my self to run and fortunately reach “runners high” as said in researchs and stuff haha

  178. beginrunning says:

    @Candy – The plan can help with weight loss when combined with the correct diet. Your doing plenty of exercise but remember in this plan running is done at a slow pace as it’s developing aerobic fitness, while body pump and spinning also include anaerobic sections in a class. Maybe your gasping for breath because your running at spinning class intensity?

    If your going to add strength training and belly dancing it’s even more important that you have a good diet that can support your exercise. Rest is important too as your body needs time to recover in order to get fitter. My partner really enjoys belly dancing and says it’s lots of fun but I don’t know how much it contributes to weight loss.

    The best way to become a better runner to join a club or find a coach so you can improve technique and economy. Just reading about all your exercise classes is making me breathless! Good luck with your 6k.

    @Sandy Lou – Glad you like the plan and great to hear you’re going to motivate yourself to run.

  179. Neil says:

    I noticed that you mentioned you quit smoking…how did you do that? I’ve done this running program before, i know it works, but i need to kick this nasty habit. Any tips or suggestions on what worked for you? Thanks!

  180. beginrunning says:

    @Neil – Quitting smoking took quite a few attempts! Eventually I was successful using nicotine patches.

  181. Bee says:

    Just found this programme – looks good! Up until a few months ago I used to regularly jog round a 10k circuit in about an hour but I’ve really lost condition. I hoping that this plan will get me into faster running fitness as my new man runs marathons in sub 4 hours and is expecting me to join him on his training runs – I need all the help I can get! When up to 30 minutes do you drop the recovery periods and just increase the time in certain increments?

  182. beginrunning says:

    @Bee – Yes, at 30 minutes you can drop the recovery periods and just increase running time. I found it was easy to increase by too much and paid the price afterwards. A lot depends on age, fitness, strength, technique etc. Increasing one long run per week by 15 mins every 2 weeks was OK for me when combined with 2-3, easy 30-40 min runs per week, but you may find a different progression is better. You also need to watch your overall weekly running time/mileage doesn’t get too excessive. Good luck keeping up with your new man!

  183. Mark says:

    I just wanted to say thanks very much for the training program and the blog.

    I started today on a modified version: I am doing the walk component first, then the run. Also, I am starting with a “week zero” of 5 minutes walking, 1 minute running x 5 sets. Having never been able to run before, I wanted to start really easy. Thanks for previous posters for these suggestions.

    Today was easier than I expected! I’m sure it won’t stay that way though! I liked getting out into the cold air – it was good thinking time – a good way to start the day.

    Also using RunKeeper (on Android). I am getting up a bit earlier than usual and running around my local area, after a light breakfast.

    Running in Chuck Taylors for now, but I plan to get some minimalist shoes soon (Merrell Barefoot, Vibram etc.).

    Thanks again!

  184. Karen says:

    Thank you all for all the tips! i quit smoking 2 years ago and started eating better and exercising in Jan. Down 42 pounds so far! I have just started running and my lung capacity isn’t up to par yet but i think the training schedule will get me to my first 4k on the 4th of july!

  185. andy says:

    Hi. This seems like a good plan. hadn’t thought of anything like this. i just started running every two days. i do a 4 min walk before and after running, (4 min warm up/4 min warm down) i only ran for 1 minute first week, 2 mins second week, etc. every seven days i add a minute. i’m now on week six doing a 6 minute run every two days. i realise though its going to take me 30 weeks before i’m running for 30 minutes, so considering switching to this plan though it seems harder and less gradual process.

  186. Hasan says:

    oh my god , i just relized that i run only 3 times while it should be 4 times , for example i’m in week 5 and you are saying ” run 8 minutes and Repeat 3 times ” which mean 4 times in total..right ? πŸ™

    i’m doing it 3 times only .. is that going to help me at the end to run 30 minutes ?

    please advise me

  187. Amber says:

    I am starting this plan on Monday! wish me luck! I am a casual jogger/walker lol but think of myself as a jogger πŸ™‚ This plan makes the most sense of all that I have reviewed. Hopefully this will turn me into a bona – fide jogger!!

  188. beginrunning says:

    @Mark – Week Zero is a great idea if you want a gentler introduction. As you say, its nice having that thinking time which really sets you up for the day. I’d be interested to hear about your progression to minimalist shoes if you decide to go ahead.

    @Karen – Congratulations on the weight loss and quitting smoking. Thats a major achievement! It’s surprising how quickly you notice lung capacity building. Good luck with your 4th of July 4K.

    @andy – Although this plan is harder than what you’ve been doing it’s not too bad if you take it slowly. As you’ve already started to run it’ll be easier than starting from scratch. Good luck.

    @Hasan – You were right the first time – you only run 3 times on Week 5. This gives a total of 24 minutes running and a total 6 minutes walking recovery in the session. Don’t worry, by the end of the plan you’ll be running for 30 minutes πŸ™‚

    @Amber – Glad you like the look of the plan. Good luck starting on Monday when you officially become a ‘proper’ jogger!

  189. elgor says:

    great running plan,i am onto my 1st week of this plan and at 38 its the 1st time iv ran in about 20 years and iam really enjoying it. Iam not over weight but i do like a few beers while relaxing on a night time( only 3 or 4) a few times a week.Is this ok while being on this 10 week course or should i be tee total for the 10 weeks ?


  190. beginrunning says:

    @elgor – As long as they don’t make you fall over then it’s probably OK πŸ™‚ Seriously though it could be a good chance give your body a break from alcohol and you’ll probably be a bit less dehydrated when you run too. Good to hear your enjoying the plan.

  191. goodsofar says:

    This has been the first time I have not had any injuries from starting to run. I am 52 and have never been a runner until 2 yrs ago, but had much down time from injuries. Now that I am at the 14 min run week, I am really looking at wanting to do 2 things but not sure what first. Increase my speed (to run with hubby) and the total amount of time. I am wondering how I should add more total time running, and/or speed, without injury of course?

  192. beginrunning says:

    @goodsofar – My preference would be to build total running time first. That way you have more of an aerobic base and should be a bit stronger too. When you start to doing speed work then a gradual introduction will help avoid injury. You could substitute one speed or interval session for one of your normal sessions per week, but you only want to be running a bit faster than normal. Again it’s a case of letting your body adapt to new demands of balance, co-ordination and strength in addition to spending more time at a higher heart rate. As usual if there’s any pain then stop and get some medical advice before resuming running. Often some physio and strengthening exercises might be all thats needed. As you’ve already experienced some injury then you’ll recognize the signs! Good luck.

  193. Ruth says:

    I have been looking for a running plan for a few weeks now and I really like the look of this one. While I am fairly skinny, my cardio levels are below zero, even walking fast for 5 mins leaves me slightly breathless, so I definitely need to get fit!
    I’m definitely going to give this a go, I like the idea of 1min and 5mins for week 1 – I know for a fact I won’t even manage 2mins, so breaking it down but still having a goal will hopefully be motivation in itself.
    Great website, thanks!

  194. goodsofar says:

    Thanks for your advice, I will give it a try but how do I add more total running time e.g. start doing 10 mins run 1 min walk 4 times or?? This run program worked so well for me, not sore or injured, and would like to figure out a new weekly schedule to take me up to a run/walk for 45 mins or so and not sure how.

    Also, Ruth I am/was you before I started as well and this worked for me, just remember to run slow at first and repeat a week if you need to and take your mind off of the breathing (i use music) and relax. Good luck!

  195. beginrunning says:

    @Ruth – The smaller stages do make it easier to stay motivated but you’ll still get a bit breathless. As goodsofar found – keep it slow and repeat a week if needed. Hope you have fun getting fitter!

    @goodsofar – Once you’ve got to week 10 (30 minutes running) then stay at 30 min runs, 3 times per week for a couple of weeks. On the third week add 10 minutes to one of your runs so you’ll have done two 30 min runs and one 40 minute run that week. I added 15 minutes when I originally finished the plan but then went a bit overboard and had to stop running for a while. The safe way is to gradually increase the time of your long run every other week or even every third week. HTH

  196. Bess says:

    So when I run inside, I usually use a treadmill – I was wondering what the speeds you would recommend for running/walking are? I don’t want to push myself too hard but I also don’t want to slack off and not make any progress.

  197. Hasan says:

    Hello coach..

    i’m in week 8 and everything going well with me..i really enjoyed this great plan..

    my question is : after finishing this plan ( running 30 minutes ) , is it OK to run everyday in next month ?

    please advice me


  198. beginrunning says:

    @Beth – You need to be running at a speed you can hold a conversation at. This will depend on how fit you are already so it’s a case of trial and error. You could try starting at 4 mph and see how that feels but don’t be afraid to slow down if necessary. Walking speed should just be your normal walking speed. If you want to make the session more like running outside then set a 1 percent incline on the treadmill. Good luck

    @Hasan – Congratulations! Running everyday as soon as you finish the plan would be a bit much and it’s better to include 1 or 2 days off. As you get stronger you can handle a greater amount of running and the younger you are, the easier it is. Keeping to the principal of gradual progression will help both progress and injury avoidance. Good luck with your post plan running.

  199. Zoe Watson says:

    I am 37 years old 113lbs and havent run for about 10 years. I have just finished my first week with my 12 year old son, and I feel fabulous!!! I have found it tough even though I pretty slim, my cardio fitness is poor. I am really hooked, thanks for you great advice.

  200. elgor says:

    well 1st run into week 2,all was going well then the day after running just below my knee,s on both sides really ached,that was a week ago and havent run since and there still a bit sore.I dont think it helped being on 12 hour shifts at work on my feet all day for 4 days after the run.Think il leave it for a few weeks then start again.

  201. beginrunning says:

    @Zoe Watson – Sounds like your off to a great start. Enjoy the rest of the plan!

    @elgor – Sorry to hear about your problem. You’ve done the right thing by stopping running. If you can get a couple of sessions with a physio they may be able to offer some help, especially as your job involves spending a lot of time standing. Hope you recover soon.

  202. venskaus says:

    Hi there. I’ve been reading the plan and all the comments. I’m in week 3 now, and monitoring my speed, heart rate. As some may experience, this week is pretty tough. Both of my legs are soar, and also the bottom of my feet. Is this normal, should I take a break and continue when it gets better?
    Many thanks, Vens.

  203. beginrunning says:

    @Vens – Each week should feel a bit harder and you may ache a bit but it sounds like your experiencing more than that. You should certainly stop running and it would be worth seeing a physio to get a better idea of what’s causing the problem. Pain in the sole of both feet could be due to number of reasons from simply bad fitting shoes to plantar fasciitis. If you just had a break and then resumed running without addressing the underlying problem the issues are likely to return. It’s a bit depressing when you’ve made such a good start but many problems can be fixed quite easily and you can get back to running again. It would be good to hear how you get on. Good luck.

  204. Woohoo says:

    I completed the plan recently which I am grateful to you for as it has made me actually get fit. In training for a half marathon I want to keep two runs to 30 mins a week due to other commitments and then add 10 mins per week to the 3rd run a week to get up to 12-13 miles, is this ok or do the other 2 runs in the weeks need to be longer than 30 mins?.

  205. beginrunning says:

    @Woohoo – Congratulations on finishing the plan! If you want to keep to 30min short runs then you could add a 20 minute run to the weekly schedule once your at an hour on your long run. So you’d be doing 2×30 min, 1×20 min and 1xlong run per week. Ideally you’ll have covered the 13 mile distance in a long run before race day. Good luck with the race and let us know how you get on.

  206. Immortalmage says:

    would this help me get my 6 packs with this plan?

  207. ego says:

    10 weeks??? πŸ™ thats too much time to wait to run 30 minutes…

  208. Greg says:

    I am currently on week 4 and I just ran my first 7 minutes this past Saturday. Due to a busy schedule, I can only run on Wednesday and not again until Sunday. So even though it takes a week and a day to complete the 7 minutes, is that too long? I cannot wait to get to the 30 minutes, I eventually want to train for a half marathon and I hope this starts me out.

  209. Hema says:

    A good number of people in my family run/jog for fitness. I’ve tried running a couple of times. But I’ve never persisted for more than a week. I’ll work with your plan. It sounds great. I’ll keep you posted on how it goes.

  210. beginrunning says:

    @Immortalmage – The plan won’t be much help getting a six pack but it might help you see them if combined with a healthy diet πŸ™‚

    @Greg – Six days isn’t too long so it’s fine to fit the plan around other commitments. Good luck and you’ll soon be planning your half marathon training!

    @Hema – I hope this time your successful. Looking forward to your updates.

  211. jjb says:

    Hey. I have a question. Im concerned about my daughter weight. Shes 5’4 and 117 pounds. Is that healthy or no ? Would this progam work well for her ? P.S She’s 14 years old.

  212. anton says:

    Hey guys this site works and i completed my first half marathon last year, so would like to say a big thanks and all those people who are struggling keep at it, it pays in the end

  213. beginrunning says:

    @JJB – I can’t comment on your daughters weight but if your concerned then it’s worth getting some professional advice. As for the plan being suitable, then as long as there are no medical reasons she shouldn’t do it then I suppose it depends on how enthusiastic she is πŸ™‚ I know I hated running at her age and would do anything to avoid the weekly school cross country run. Sorry I can’t be more help.

    @anton – Congratulations on your success – it’s great to hear the plan helped and thanks for your words of encouragement.

  214. Melissa says:

    hello – I found your begin to run plan and my family and I started it last night. I was super excited to do this with my husband and 9 year old twins. Hub and I have put on some weight over the years but want to set a good example for our children. I haven’t been physically active for about 4.5 years after getting hurt playing softball, BUT I did this last night! All 5 sets and I feel so good about it. I am sore but keep thinking I did it! We both feel like we can stick with your plan and succeed.
    It sounds like we should do this 3’s a week and repeat a week if we are really struggeling. One more question I have is I run really slow, I could probably be passed by a speed walker! I kept going though and could feel how each set became a tiny bit better with my breathing. Is it ok that I am so slow? Is there still a benifit or should I somehow push myself to run faster?
    Thank you.

  215. Jo says:

    i started running for the first time, and found your plan recently. this has been so helpful, than just trying to figure out my own increments. i’m up to week 5 now, but might have attained a stress fracture prior to finding your plan. if i have to wait to heal, should i start from week 1 again? thanks!

  216. MJ Tooting UK says:

    I have quite an unhealthy lifestyle with smoking and all the rubbish I eat. Although I’m not overweight I’m seriously unfit. I started running a week ago and was very discouraged because I couldn’t even complete a mile.

    So I was looking for a ‘start running’ program and came across your site. I immediately put my running shoes on and had a go.

    At first I was very tempted to shorten the 4 minute walk because it felt that the break in between was too long, but I remembered there was a warning against this and boy was I glad I listened, because the second to last running phase was a bit of a push and I could really feel I’m exercising. After the recovery walk I made the final run home and I’m feeling great!!!

    Thank you so much for the program. I’m so chuffed I made the run today and I really enjoyed it so can’t wait for my next run.

  217. beginrunning says:

    @Melissa – Sorry for the late reply and congratulations on getting started. Your correct about repeating a week if it’s a struggle but don’t worry about being too slow. The fitness benefits from this plan actually come from running slowly. When you’ve finished the plan and have a good aerobic base and are stronger etc you can then go onto building speed if you want although many people are happy with regular, slow runs. Good luck!

    @Jo – If and when the doctr gives you the all clear then starting from week 1 would be less risky. If you’ve not seen a physio then a few sessions could be a real help as they can suggest some strengthening exercises that will give some added protection. Hope you recover soon.

    @MJ Tooting UK – Glad to hear your enjoying the plan and you’ve got off to great start. Thanks for the feedback and good luck!

  218. Melissa says:

    WOW! I know I already wrote you once but I just had to let you know what is going on. We ran the first week twice and then ended up taking a week off because we got busy. We started again last night and I was a little worried about how it would go. The very first night was HARD and I did not really want to repeat that experience.
    So what happened? I was a little faster, less winded, stood up straighter while jogging and just over all felt the improvement 100%! We are so excited to see how this schedule works and the benefits we are already feeling. I know when we have to step up to the next week it will start over again with that extreme push but I can see how it works now and that is a great thing!
    Thanks for posting this to begin with and your helpful answers to everyone who writes.
    Have a good day. πŸ™‚

  219. Kate says:

    Just going to comment here. I am middle aged (55) and overweight my entire life. I am committed to turning this around. I am going to try to do a 1/2 marathon for cancer in January and will begin your running program tomorrow. I have seen the doctor and there is no physical reason why I should not be able to do this. Wish me luck! I don’t even remember running as a kid so I don’t know if I even know how to run! How silly is that? I will let you know how week one goes. Thanks for the great site, it has given me much needed information to get started.

  220. beginrunning says:

    @Melissa – Glad to hear your making progress and thanks for the feedback.

    @Kate – Your half marathon is an exciting target and you sound really motivated. I’m looking forward hearing how you get on so good luck!

  221. Me. says:

    Hi, I’m a 12 year old girl. I have never been very active (although my Mom says I should be active because I’m a kid) and I’m not overweight as I have a high metabolism (is that what it’s called?) and I have always been pretty slim although not active. My mother and my brother (10) are both overweight only because they have less active metabolism, and my father isn’t above average, although my sister (7) slightly above average.

    Anywayyys. My mom looked up on the internet “Beginning running” and found this. We skipped the walking for 8 days as my mom says it was for people out of shape. (Hint: WE ARE OUT OF SHAPE MOM!) So we started the walk 2 minutes, run 4 minutes today and we were all pooped. Who knew it would be so hard? My mom says we will walk a 1/2 an hour on our days “off” so we can make the transition into this schedule easier. I can’t wait to be “in shape”! Maybe then my parents will let us get a dog!

  222. Gowri says:

    I just started doing this pgm.The thing is i’m getting upper abdominal pain at the end of the session. do i need to do any stertch exercise?

  223. beginrunning says:

    @Me – Hope you and your family have lots of fun running!

    @Gowri – You should stop running and see a doctor who’ll be able to tell you what’s causing the problem and the best solution. Good luck.

  224. Billy says:

    I have started doing this program and its going really well!
    Is it ok for me to do it every day (have no rest days) if I feel up for it?

  225. Jackson says:

    Im 14 and starting this program today, i am running on my p.e. days so i can have a rest day, my weight is 220(I know its bad) and i am 5’10 wish me luck!

  226. Jackson says:

    OH i forgot i am running out side at about 2 A.M in the morning because i get embarrassed when people stare at me running :/ is this OK?

  227. Kate says:

    So I have been a bust so far. Gave up after the first few days of being embarrassed at the gym and unable to do the simplest things. Now I am reading about Jackson and I think….get over yourself Kate and get moving.
    Starting over tomorrow and hoping to hang in there.

  228. Mai says:

    Hello! I am on week 4 now and Thanks God, no pain what so ever. I am advancing fairly easily.
    I want to ask:
    1)my weight is near perfect… Will running help me lose more weight?
    2)Are there any parameters other than advancing with the plan to help me monitor my advances? like the heart rate? when should I measure it for comparison?
    3)How can I measure the distance run ever time?

    Thanks Alot πŸ™‚

  229. Mai says:

    Another question please:
    In week 4, I have done about 4 kms by the end of the 30 minutes. How much do u think I will be able to do by the end of ten weeks ??

  230. beginrunning says:

    Once again apologies for the late replies unfortunately I haven’t been around recently.

    @Billy – The rest days are important as this is when many of the beneficial adaptations to training take place. So even if you feel up to it you’d soon find that skipping recovery days would have a negative result. This is even more important when your just starting.

    @Jackson – Running outside at 2am sounds like a dangerous idea. I understand you feel embarrassed about running so perhaps there’s a safer way to deal with this. Maybe you could use a school or local track during quieter periods or go for an early run to beat the rush. Maybe you could run with a friend or try some treadmill sessions at a local gym. After a few runs you’ll find that your not so bothered about people staring at you – especially as you can feel good knowing that you’ve taken responsibility for your own health a fitness. Maybe some of those people staring wish they had the motivation and strength to do the same thing! Choosing a safe time and place to run is vital and you should let you parents/ teacher know when you running and what route your planning to take. Good luck!

    @Kate – Hope you’ve kept going and aren’t so embarrassed now.

    @Mai – 1) Running can help you lose weight when combined with the correct diet. 2) Heart rate monitoring can be really helpful. There are formulas that are meant to predict max heart rate but the best way is to be tested properly. For recreational use, when you haven’t got an accurate Max Heart Rate figure, a monitor is helpful for comparing training runs and for roughly targeting heart rate zones. 3) A couple of ways – walk a measured kilometer and record time taken then walk your running route and see how long it takes. Use the first number to work out the distance. Use the website in to measure route distance. Use a gps app for a smartphone or a small handhelp gps and then run your route.

    If your doing 4km in week 4 then your moving quite fast! By week 10 you’ll probably doing more than 5km. I’m feeling jealous. Good Luck!

  231. James says:

    Im due to run a half marathon in 3 weeks. due to an injury where I have been advised to rest for these 3 weeks up to the race, will I still have the fitness to run on the day or will the hardwork have gone? before hand I was running 3 times a week 1 30 min, 1 45 and 1 90 mins.

  232. Gab says:

    I’ve been going to the gym for a while and lost a fair amount of weight but I think I need to up the anti now. I jogged slowly (7kmh) on the treadmill for the first time yesterday only for a couple of minutes just to test myself out because I didn’t really think I would be co-ordinated enough. Suprisingly I shocked myself! I’m also a little embarrassed but I figure I have to start somewhere and I like to think others at the gym appreciate that. I’m going to challenge myself with this program! Thanks!

  233. Bill says:

    Hi. I’m 58 and just quit smoking after 40 years, Just completed day 1 of week one after reading all the positive postings, I want to run a 5 k in Dec with my son and dam it I’m going to do it. Thanks

  234. Lisa says:

    My daughter just found this sit for me, as I am needing to challenge myself physically. I have been an avid and fast walker for years but now would like to do more. I just turned 50 and thought I was too old to strive for more, but I am in good health and not overweight. I just met a woman in her early sixties that has been a runner for decades. She looked awesome! I want to look and feel that good in my sixties! So as I psyche myself to do this, I just want to THANK beginrunning for the continual support you offer everyone! Now I just need to pick a day to start…

  235. beginrunning says:

    @James – I don’t think you’ll lose much too much fitness after 3 weeks so don’t worry about all that hard work going to waste. The important thing is managing your injury so you don’t have an even longer layoff. If you’re told it’s OK to race and it’s the first time you’ve run for 3 weeks then start slower than usual and remember you fitness will be a bit reduced. If there’s any hint of the injury returning then it’s better to stop as there’s always other races to enter. Good luck.

    @Gab – Congratulations on losing weight starting to run. It’s great having a challenge – especially when it starts to pay off!

    @Bill – It feels so good when your lungs start to clear after giving up and it’s not long before you find you can run for some time without getting breathless. Good luck with that 5K

    @Lisa – One of the best things about starting running or getting fit when your older is that wonderful feeling you have doing things you couldn’t do when you were younger! A good day to start is today so good luck getting started πŸ™‚

  236. Shah says:

    Hi, I am planning to run and found your website. It looks really nice. Just a short question :), could you guide is it feasible to eat (banana etc) or drink (juice etc) before running? and also is it true while running drinking “lemon water” cut fats? and (ideally) after how many minutes one should eat?
    (May be stupid questions, but i’m really looking forward to control my diet plan with this running plan to cut weight).

  237. Ted says:

    I started this program in June. I made it through week five then came down with a sinus infection and chest congestion. This was followed by my wife and kids getting sick. After all that I got another cold and have not run for two months. I want to start back up again but would like to avoid going all the way back to week 1. Should I try to go right to week six?

  238. crrich1209 says:

    I am so glad I found this site! I actually started walk/running about 2 weeks ago, but never really had a scheduled plan and progress chart to go after. I turn 40 yrs old in 10 weeks and am hoping to Finally lose this “baby fat” I have carried around (and my ‘baby’ is 12 yrs old!!) LOL….Can Not wait to get started tomorrow and Best of Luck to you all!! Thanks again for this awesome support group and all the information on becoming healthier! πŸ™‚

  239. Tara says:

    Starting tomorrow.
    Goal is 5k this time next year.
    Although I’m trying like heck to mentally prepare myself, I can’t imagine running for 2 min even.
    Going to try to add an extra 1 min/4 min in the beginning I think.

    Here’s to good health!

  240. John says:

    on the 10 week get started program why is all 9 weeks at total of 30min each day and then week 10 1hr ie 30min run and repeat once????

  241. Tara says:

    A lifetime of laziness and smoking is hindering me. After the first minute I wanted to quit, but I ran 1 min and walked 4 min. After two repeats I thought I may throw up. This week I’m taking it even slower than I thought. Run 1 walk 4 repeat twice. Geez!!!!!

  242. John says:

    well day one done!!!!! feeling ok, shin splints forgot that this maybe a issue due to running with some extra baggage !!!!!! ice is the cure if i remember correctly

  243. beginrunning says:

    @Shah – Great idea to combine running with a diet plan. You can eat a banana before running but try to allow 30 mins or more to avoid getting indigestion / heartburn/stitch etc. The more you eat, the bigger the gap. Juice isn’t so bad but too much can be a bit uncomfortable. I’ve not seen any evidence that drinking lemon water while running cuts fats. I’d be surprised if it did and I don’t think you’d want to be drinking something too acidic like that before or during exercise. You can eat straight after running and, depending on what you eat, this helps replace glycogen and any protein consumed aids the process in addition to helping repair muscles. Good luck with the diet and running plan!

    @Ted – After a two month break you’d probably need to start nearer the beginning than week six. I know it’s frustrating but the easy approach pays off in the end!

    @crrich1209 – Glad you find the site helpful and hope you have lots of fun getting fit for 40!

    @Tara – You’ve got off to a great start and taking it slower really helps. I know what you mean about the years of smoking being a hindrance but this makes if feel even better when you start getting fitter.

    @John – Sorry if it’s a bit confusing. On week 10 you run for 30 mins continuously without any walking breaks. If your getting shin splints then ice will help the immediate symptoms but you should stop running until you’ve found out whats causing them. It’s a real nuisance when you’ve just got started but will pay off in the end. There are some comments earlier that may be helpful and Good luck!

  244. SylviaE says:

    I am 54. Only chance to run is on weekends. Done the run 2 min walk 4 for 3 weeks now. Happily notice a big difference in breathing capacity now. But 2 questions: I notice I can run longer & easier during the first three 2-minute laps then struggle to finish the last 2 2-minute laps. Maybe because I run these on a slight uphill. Can I go on to the 3 min x 3 min? Also, I invested in some good running shoes but have been getting a slight pain in back of calf. Could it be how I am running. I run heel to toe. Thanks for the time you invest in answering our questions.

  245. SylviaE says:

    Update: I completed the 3 x 3 this morning!! I made these slight changes: I ran a bit slower, I closed my strides a little, I changed my running course slightly so that I would walk on the slopes and run across the block on a more even plane, I paid attention to how my left foot was landing so as not to put so much strain on it. I am thinking that I strain my left calf as I do the walk part not the run part. Anyway…Celebrating completing the 3 x 3. Any advice you can give me is appreciated especially on how to avoid that extra strain on my left leg. I do a warmup before and after. Happy running!

  246. Mary says:

    I just recently got back into running. It seems like it is so hard to start up again after a long absence. I just wanted to say thank you so much for making an easy simple to follow guide. I just did day one of Week 3. I was nervous about jumping from running 3 mins to running a full 5 mins. I have to say tho that I feel great! I actually ended strong with running the last 7.5 mins straight. I can’t wait to do it again! Thank you! A lot of other running plan are complex and overwhelming, this one is great!

  247. Jane says:

    This is a great running plan. I am nearly 53 and just wanted to get fit. Strangely enough, I find I have more energy on the last run than for the previous four (I am currently doing 2.5 mins walking and then 3.5 mins running x 5). I’m amazed at how quickly my stamina has built and really enjoy the whole experience.

  248. beginrunning says:

    @SylviaE – Congratulations on completing the 3×3 and changing your route to run on level ground is a good idea. I can’t be much help regarding your calf pain other than to make the usual suggestion of seeing a physiotherapist. It may be a simple case of Achilles tendinitis or or another issue with gait/ biomechanics. It may respond to stretching the Achilles /calf after a run but you should stop running and get some professional advice to be safe. Sometimes it only takes a couple of sessions and a few remedial exercises, then your back on the program with more strength and resistance to injury. Good luck.

    @Mary – Glad you like the plan. As you say, it’s hard to start running again after a long break but now your on week 3 it sounds like your back in your stride!

    @Jane – I remember first noticing an improvement in my aerobic fitness and once started it felt like it built quickly. It was a nice surprise and it sounds like your enjoying the experience too!

  249. SylviaE says:

    Last week I started week 3 and struggled with the 5 minute laps. πŸ™ One day I didn’t even finish! Yesterday I decided to run at a nearby park’s run route and I was able to run the 5 minutes easily! In fact, I ran 5 laps instead of 4 by mistake. I ran slowly. My normal route has steep slopes which may have contributed to much shortness of breath, and calf pain. I am excited!

  250. patrick says:

    I just started week 1 today. I have carved out time in my schedule to run on Monday, Wednesday and Friday and rest the weekend. Due to work, it’s the best I can do. I used to be super athletic, almost to the point of over-kill in my younger years. I’m nearing 34 years old and weighing in at 224 lbs. I’m looking to build my endurance and drop 24 of those pounds. I am hoping my athletic past plays into me receiving this plan well.

    I’ll log some updates as they come…..

  251. patrick says:

    week one was doable….I felt like I was getting a solid workout and a decent sweat. At the end up the first week I ran the last leg at 3 minutes to get a feel for the difference in time. Didn’t think it was going to be that much of a difference. Well, after day 1 of week 2, adding that extra minute of running and decreasing the minute of walking is a massive difference. I was exhausted today. Perhaps it was my Saturday of beer tasting or maybe just Monday being Monday, but the 5th set of 3 minutes was tough. I’ll see how the rest of the week goes.

  252. patrick says:

    week 2 down… was more difficult for sure, I’ve certainly got to the point where I just don’t know if I’m ever going to get the the 30 minutes straight. Perhaps I am going to fast or hard? I’ve been doing all of this on a treadmill since I live in the lovely winter climate of the PacNW. I’m walking with it on 3.2 to 3.5 and running with it on 7.2 to 7.5…..

    I’ll start week 3 , obviously in a couple days and see how that goes….in all honesty, I’m a bit concerned and may have to repeat the week 2 again.

  253. the braintree plodder says:

    found your site today – and it inspired me to get running tonite . Im on the plan, with a view to getting fit and shedding body mass …… will keep you posted on y progress

  254. Alinka says:

    I started day one today. I didnt think I was able to run for the entire 2 minutes but I was able to. I used to run regularly up to last year but as of this year I was sendentary and gained a lot of weight very fast. My knees were hurting the first minute, I changed my gait and step and the pain stopped. I was jogging not running. I must tell you this is a very doable and sensible program, running places a lot of different stresses on the body and starting slow and steady is the best way. Thank you.

  255. Alinka says:

    Still at it end of first week. Start 2nd week on Wed.

  256. Craig says:

    After 12 months of weight training to get my strength back up I knew that I had to increase my cardio. I always thought my joints where gone and couldn’t run anymore. I’m now up to week 5 and loving my 5:30am exercise. Thank you.

    I walk at 5.0 kph and run at 6.8kph.

  257. beginrunning says:

    @patrick, @the braintree plodder and @Alinka – Hope you’re all still making progress and having fun. Thanks for taking the time to post all your updates.

    @Craig – Great to hear of your success and you’ve obviously found the best speed to build up cardio without your joints complaining! That’s one early start too πŸ™‚

  258. wendy says:

    well, I have not ran since i was pregnant with my daughter and she just turned five on Monday. I am waiting for new balance to call so I can go pick up my new running shoes. I am 40 pounds heavier and two kids later but I am so ready to start running again. I am a full time student and really need to stress reducer. I am going running today!!!!!! I am excited to start using this program!!

  259. Mark says:

    This program is easy to follow, which cannot be said for most online running programs.

    I also like how weight loss starts occurring long before you even get to week 10. I was dropping pounds at the 2 week mark. I do recommend eating somewhat healthy while using this running plan. I am not suggesting that you must starve yourself, or eat tofu. Just eat better foods and eat until you are full. I love complex carbs, such as oatmeal, beans, brown rice and whole wheat products. They keep me full and energized for my runs.

  260. beginrunning says:

    @wendy – That enthusiasm will get you going so I hope the shoes arrived on time πŸ™‚

    @Mark – Glad you found the program easy to follow and it’s encouraging to hear it may have helped you lose weight. Your point about following healthy diet is really important and having sufficient energy for runs is vital. Thanks for your feedback and observations.

  261. Emma says:

    Hi There,

    Im in my twenties and am interested in starting running. Ive done step aerobics and spinning in the past but not much exercise in the last few months. With my age should i be able to do more than step 1 or will i start with step 1 anyways? Also any tips to be able to get your mind right when running as i tend to concentrate too much on my breathing and end up panicing and stopping Thanks πŸ™‚

  262. beginrunning says:

    @Emma – Even though you’re young and used to exercise it’s better to start with step 1 as this gives your mind and body a chance to gradually adapt to running and makes it easier to complete the program. If your breathing is causing you to panic and stop you should get some medical advice about this before continuing. It may just be that running slower would help as it would make your breathing slower and less of a struggle so you would focus on it less. Another strategy could be to note every time your right foot lands. This will act as a distraction, but don’t forget to look where your going and keep an eye open for hazards as it can be quite hypnotic! Good luck.

  263. anson says:

    Hi after reading all these comments really got me interested in running.

    Back in the army i suffered frm shin splints and the doctor advised me not have vigorous running. I am wondering is there a running technique that will put less stress on my shins?i am really new to running

  264. beginrunning says:

    @anson – Shin splints can have a number of causes and are often the result of too much running too quickly. The first step would be to see a physiotherapist and identify any biomechanical issues then get fitted for the correct shoe type (you can always progress to a minimal shoe later). Try to avoid very hard sufaces, make sure you stretch after every run, take things slowly and stop running at the first sign of any pain. When you where in the army it’s likely you increased mileage too fast and ran carrying a backpack with the wrong footwear on difficult terrain. But you probably didn’t have much choice and had someone shouting at you πŸ™‚

  265. Mandy says:

    Hi, i’ve just signed up to run a 10k race for charity, and the thought of it scares me silly! lol I hated running at school (I left in 1991), the thought of doing anything over 200m used to make me feel sick, so this race is going to be both a mental and physical challange for me. I have been scanning the internet to see how best to prepare, (the race is in 19 weeks), and have just found this thread πŸ™‚
    I have been doing Yoga for about a year now, but I realise that I havnt done ANY kind of cardio training for a very long time, so I’ve been anticipating the fact that my heart isnt going to like the change in my routine!!
    The programme that you have outlined above sounds JUST what I have been looking for to get me going without scaring my body half to death. The kids go to their dads for a couple of hours every other day, so i’m thinking that this plan is easily achievable to fit into my hektic life.
    Many thanks for posting this πŸ™‚ x

  266. Mandy says:

    Just a quick question if I may please, as mentioned above, I do Yoga, usually every other day if i’m able. Am I best alternating the Yoga days with my running days, or should I aim to do both in the same day if I can find the time, therefore giving me a total rest day in between? Any advice would be greatly appreciated, thankyou πŸ™‚

  267. beginrunning says:

    @Mandy – As far as alternating Yoga and running you’ll probably have to see how it goes and try some variations. Since you’ve been doing yoga for a year you’ve already adapted to it but when you first start running it may be struggle to do both. If this is the case then for the first couple of weeks you could drop 1 or 2 yoga sessions, then reintroduce them as you get used to running or feel able. I’d probably aim to do yoga on the same day, but after running and with a break in between! If your not pushing to get to the next yoga level but repeating familiar postures then you might find doing yoga the following day easier although you’ll ache a bit from running until you get used to it.

    That year of yoga practice will be helpful as it will have improved your strength and balance. I’d be interested to hear which option works best for you. Good luck!

  268. hans says:

    Hi there. I`m on week 7 now and everything is going smooth. I installed Endomondo sportstracker and jog at an average pace of 9km/ph. Just wanted to hear if thats decent or whether I should kick it up a gear

  269. beginrunning says:

    @hans – The best speed varies between people and is due to a number of factors but 9kph sounds fast enough. The program is aimed at building aerobic fitness so the goal is to keep the heart rate in a low range. If you can hold a conversation while running then thats the correct speed. Looks like your making good progress!

  270. Tyler says:

    I am 21 at 5’8″ and 240 pounds. I’m having trouble with routine building and dieting. I was raised with poor eating habits and have a pretty stereotypical college pizza and beer diet. Don’t have much cooking skills and honestly dont know where to begin on diet building as I have a horrible gag reflex to certain foods. I have a feeling I can get into it eventually. But i have a question. Ive pretty easily taken to running on elliptical machines. Even on my first day doing it I ran about 2.5 miles in half an hour. Even if I don’t get a solid diet right away, will running everyday still help me lose weight and build cardio? I was really in shape in high school a couple years ago but my body type changed and I’m pretty barrel chested now. I’d like to add arms and abs toning and building to a good cardio routine as well. I understand about not overdoing it and I’m good with my limits so I’m not to worried about injury. Or will just running shed weight off my stomach and chest and I can worry about toning later?

  271. Wendi says:

    How often should a person run for 30 minutes? Every other day? Thanks.

  272. beginrunning says:

    @Tyler – Running might help you lose a small amount of weight even if you don’t start a diet right away as you’ll be burning more calories than normal. However if you want to lose a significant amount of weight you need to cut calories too as 30 min runs alone are unlikely to be enough. You will start build cardio straight away. When you do lose wight it will reduce all over although some areas will hang onto it longer than others! – Everyone is different. Muscle building or ‘toning’ won’t reduce the fat in specific areas but once you’ve lost weight you’ll see the benefits of that hard work.

    It sounds like your half way there with diet as you know what you want to change and even cutting back on the calorie dense food and drink will help. When you get around to it a good diet will provide the nutrients your body needs to adapt to all the cardio and muscle building training you’ll be doing. Good luck.

    @Wendi – For this plan it’s not quite every other day as you run three times in 7 days eg Monday, Wednesday and Saturday.

  273. Steve says:

    Well I thought I would leave a comment once I had completed the plan. I actually started 6 weeks ago unable to run more than a couple of minutes. After a couple of weeks I was enjoying the feeling of exercising so much I started cross training in the gym on my rest days. As a result I couldn’t help jumping ahead and ran my first 5k without stopping this week. So I guess I cheated on the plan at the end but it certainly got me inspired to start running and has definitely done the trick. Next stop 10k. Thanks for posting the plan & if like me you’re unsure about starting I can only recommend the feeling once you get into your stride!

  274. mandy says:

    I’ve just completed week one πŸ™‚
    Thanks for the advice that you gave me, I thought about what you said about the yoga, and agreed that I’d be best to do it on my running days. I thought I’d try and include it into my running regime though to try and save time, so I do the first half of my yoga BEFORE i run, as a warm up, and the second half of it as a cool down.
    So far, this seems to be going ok,but I have to be honest, I’m dreading stepping up to run 3 minutes this week as after nearly two mins of running, i’m really willing the timer to call two mins! lol I always used to feel like my legs had no energy for running at school, and it still feels like that now!! Could that be due to my diet or just lack of excersize?
    I do normally try to follow a low carb diet, but I’m wondering if I’m gonna have to go against my grain and start increasing the carbs now?

  275. beginrunning says:

    @Steve – It’s great to hear about your success and that the plan inspired you to start running. Good luck with that 10k and thanks for your comments.

    @Mandy – As you’re on the first week it will be a bit of a struggle. If your completing the sessions then you’re doing OK πŸ™‚

    If you’re really struggling there are few things to look at although it’s a case of trial and error. Perhaps the yoga warm up is working against you so you could try a 5 min walk instead and then reintroduce yoga when you more used to running. You say the feeling reminds you of running at school. That sensation of breathlessness and weak legs takes a bit of getting used to and it can be a psychological hurdle as well as a physical one. I felt the same at school (and for 25 years after) but am OK with it now I’ve got used to the feeling. It did take a while though! The low carb diet may be an issue too since your muscles need adequate fuel available to do the runs. During running you need glycogen from carbs rather than forcing your body to metabolize fat to produce energy. Maybe the low carb diet is something to try later! Finally you may just need to slow down a little as you should have a bit to spare at the end of the session. You could also repeat the week again until you feel ready to go to the next stage. Congratulations for getting off to a good start and good luck!

  276. Alejandro Z. says:

    Hi! Quited smoking a year ago now, and wanted to start running “from scratch” and never done any intense excercice before.

    Im trying this and will keep you guys updated with the results.

    By now I added this excercise plan to my Runkeeper app:


  277. Rosemary S says:

    Hi all, tough fist week I don’t know how I will manage 3 minutes of running in week 2. I will give it my best try, if jit is just to tough for me I will instead run for 2.5 mins, walk 3,5 minutes as giving up is not an option. Just wanted to know if during the walking part of the program does one walk briskly or does have to power walk fast not sure.

    Iam greatly inspired by the many comments, as does give one hope that it get better. Particulary one when is so unfit. Your fellow runner from South Africa.

  278. beginrunning says:

    @Alejandro Z. – Good luck and hope you enjoy your recovering lungs!

    @Rosemary S – During the walking part you can walk at normal pace. You don’t need to walk fast as this could tire you too much making it harder to finish the sessions. Good luck with Week 2 and whatever running duration you decide to do πŸ™‚

  279. Erin says:

    I’m just starting your running plan, but I’m finding it tricky to fit in 3 running sessions a week because I’m already doing some regular classes at the gym (weights, zumba). So I can probably only fit in 1-2 running sessions a week.

    Do you think this plan will be just as effective if I do 1-2 sessions of running (plus my regular weights and zumba classes) each week – then maybe take 2 weeks to complete each stage instead of 2?

    Or does the running plan only work if you run at least 3 times per week?

  280. beginrunning says:

    @Erin – That’s a busy week! 1 or 2 sessions per week should be effective as you’re doing other classes. It’s a good idea to extend each stage over 2 weeks and be prepared to drop something if you start suffering or stop completely for a while at any sign of injury. This is especially true in the beginning and you can always reintroduce things as you get fitter. The Zumba classes should contribute to your aerobic fitness anyway, although participants I’ve spoken to say the classes tend to be high intensity.

    Looks like you’ve got a fun program and I’d be interested to hear how the running plan fits in with your other activities. Good luck.

  281. Brad says:

    I just really wanted to thank you for posting this workout on your website. I have just started working out again and this is going to really help me get into shape for the summer. Keep it going as this is a very helpful website.

  282. Rosemary S says:

    Just complete week 2 and I somehow managed(barely) to run a full 3 minutes. Totally freak out about week 3, 5 minutes of running. Oh m y gosh. Will be positive and give it a really good go. I can do it I can it! LOL .

  283. Brad says:


    Remember that if you can’t make the third week numbers, stay at week 2 for another week until you are ready to go. Good luck and yes, you can do it!

  284. beginrunning says:

    @Brad – Thanks for the comments, glad to hear you found the plan helpful. Have fun getting in shape!

    @RosemaryS – Congratulations on completing Week 2 and Good Luck with Week 3 πŸ™‚

  285. Scott says:

    TOmorrowis day 2 of week 3 for me, and I can honestly say that so far it feels easier than the previous two weeks did.

    Like others I was worried about stepping up to 5 minutes at a consistent pace, but it really went very very well. I found my stride and that perfect place where your body, heart, and lungs are all in perfect synch and cadence.

    Courageous people aren’t free of fear and trepidation; they feel those things too, but then act anyways.

  286. Rosemary S says:

    It was raining today dediced not to use this as an excuse and completed week 3 today. Still waiting for its gotten easier moment I hear been mentioned. Week 4 here I come one step at a time. This plan is an absolute godsend and show thasts less is more. As previously I would attempt at least 1 -2 hours running , totally exhausing myself and quitting within a week. Many many thanks for this wonderful plan. As for the very first ever I know I will achieve my goal of improved fitness and weightloss.

  287. mandy says:

    I’ve just completed week 5 today, and I have to say, I never thought i’d say this, but i’m actually starting to enjoy this running lark! lol
    So far, I have been able to manage every run, and I can so tell the difference in my performance! πŸ™‚
    I cant believe how much my body has progressed since that week one, when my lungs were screaming after 2 mins, and the thought of starting again after a 4 mins walk was horrendous!!
    I’m actually looking forward each week now to being allowed to run for longer, and i’m finding that my recovery rate while doing the walking part is sooooooo much quicker! πŸ™‚
    I’m still doing my yoga before and after my run, simply because I feel like the routine that I do compliments the running, and so far it seems to be working well.
    The progressing challenges really are starting to get me addicted I think, however I dont wanna tempt fate, so I’m going to shut up for now, and hopefully I’ll repost in another 5 weeks with my progress! πŸ™‚

  288. Ron Barras says:

    I’ve done this program twice before, after letting myself go. Don’t ask. But it does work. Don’t get discouraged if you can’t complete one of the running portions early on without getting out of breath, because everyone is different. Also, if necessary, repeat a week if the transition from, say week 6 to week 7, is too much for you. Just repeat week 6 a second time. So it takes you 11 weeks instead of 10. At least you get there, and when you do you feel alot better than you did 12 weeks prior.

  289. Dan says:

    I have used this program in the past and will be starting again in a couple of weeks. Also, I have used a program that after the 10 weeks got me to running for a full hour by the next 10 weeks. Do you the details on that plan? Thanks!

  290. beginrunning says:

    @Ron Barras – Thanks for your comments and, as you say, the important thing is – when you get there you feel a lot better than before!

    @Dan – Not sure about the 10 week plan your referring to. You could try continuing 30 minute runs for a couple of weeks then doing 2 or 3 20-30 min runs during the week plus 1 long run of 40 mins. After 2 weeks extend your long run to 50 mins and then 2 weeks after that try for a long run of 60 mins. You could take more than 2 weeks to extend the long runs if needed. Avoid extending the shorter runs as this could push up your weekly mileage too much and lead to injury. Good Luck.

  291. Stephen says:

    Hi, I am just on week two and have been trying something a little different to help me progress week by week.

    On the last period of running on the last run of the week, I have been trying to run for the period that I will be running the following week. So for example, on the last run of week one, I did 2mins run, 4 mins walk, repeated 4 times, then ran 3 mins.

    I found this helped me come back to running the 3 mins in the following week, as I knew I could keep it up. Any thoughts?

    Also, I am overweight and have been using a treadmill, rather than running on roads, as I find it puts less stress on my joints. Does this seem OK?

  292. beginrunning says:

    @Stephen – I think most people would find that progression too much but if it works for you that’s great. One thing to remember is that you need a period to adapt and then consolidate before increasing time/distance running. Rushing this can lead to injury or just giving up and it may take a couple of weeks to get you πŸ™‚ . You can always revert to the original plan if necessary.

    Running on a treadmill is fine and if you want to simulate running outside just use a slight incline. Good luck.

  293. Stephen says:

    Well I did my final run of week 2 and backed right off going for five minutes on my final running period! So good advice.

  294. Rosemary S says:

    Hi all
    Congratulations & good luck to all those embarking on this program. I’ve just completed week 5 today & I can’t wait to begin start on week 6 after my rest this weekend. It has not being easy after years of inactivity & unhealthy food choices. However I can see improvement from day 1 where I could barely run 2 minutes.

    Hoping to post again once I’ve succeeded in completing the program.

  295. Aaron says:

    hi and the end of each week i noticed u said repeat x amount of times for example week one you said repeat 5 times, am i suppose to do it once and then repeat 5 times making it a total of 6 times? or am i just to do it 5 times? just curious cause i’m on week 4 and i was wondering if i’ve been doing it wrong, plz help…

  296. beginrunning says:

    @Rosemary S – Thats great news! Thanks for letting us know how you’re getting on and congratulations on your success.

    @Aaron – Right second time πŸ™‚ You do it five times in total. If you add up the running and walking periods for the whole session it equals 30 minutes.

  297. Ashley says:

    Hi! I just want to tell you I love this program! In the past I tried to get into running but would always try to jump into it too quickly, burn out then get discouraged and quit. This program has helped me not get better physically but mentally, I like that I get a bit in between to walk, it helps me stick with it. I can already run a mile without stopping and 2 miles in 20 mins and I keep improving! I’m working towards a 5k this summer! Good job at creating this program! Its very effective! πŸ™‚

  298. Hugh L. says:

    Hello, just wanted to thank you for posting this great plan. I’ve been running on and off over the past 2 years and recently I’ve decided to join track and field. The season starts approximately 3 weeks from now and I need to get back in shape. I remember about half a year ago, I could run 20~30 minutes nonstop easily, but now I find myself out of breath after a session of 10 minutes. Do you have any tips on how to get back into shape? Thanks again!

  299. Ally Bee says:

    I’m 40 yrs old and I started this program last week. I recently had a baby, 6 months ago, and wanted an exercise program that would help shrink the belly/waist. I never liked running, never even attempted to run, until I was told that it was the best exercise to get rid of belly fat. Now, 10 days later, I’m seeing results physically and emotionally. I lost two inches off my waist =)…thank you again for this program!

  300. Jason says:

    Well I quit smoking 6 days ago. Today I will start stage 1. I am 5’8″ 175 lbs 34yrs old. should I still start at the beginning? I haven’t run in years except for the outfield in my softball leagues. I signed up for the tough mudder course in October and I need to get back in shape. Very tough obstacle course 12 miles 27 military designed obstacles. I’ll keep you informed.

  301. beginrunning says:

    Apologies for the late reply

    @Ally Bee – That’s great news! Glad to hear your having fun and success with the program and I hope it’s still going well.

    @Jason – As I’m late replying you’ve probably found if you need to start at the beginning but generally that’s a good idea. It’s tempting to try and speed things up, especially if you have a target, but more often than not this leads to setbacks. As you’ll be doing strength training too you need to avoid excessive weekly amounts of different types of exercise when starting out. You’ve certainly set yourself a target with a Tough Mudder and I’m looking forward to your updates!

  302. […] more:Β Posted under Project Yours Truly,Workouts Comments […]

  303. Mark says:

    Just finished week 10 today. This is the second time I have used this program. I got injured shortly after completing this program the first time because I began running on asphalt, and my knees could not handle the surface. This time I will stick to the rubber track, gravel trail and cross country track. It’s more boring than road running, but it’s worth it if it means I will remain injury-free. Anything is better than the treadmill, haha.

    Thanks for the program. It is very easy to follow, unlike Couch25k.

  304. mandy says:

    WOOOOOO HOOOOOOOO! πŸ™‚ I wanna say a HUGE thankyou for this programme. I’ve just started my week 10, and tonight I ran 3.31 miles in 32.13 minutes without any walking and I felt ok at the end of it too! πŸ™‚
    I feel proper chuffed with myself as only 10 weeks ago, it had been easily 20 years since I have done any running at all.
    I’m doing a 10k run for charity on May 20th so I know i’m only half way there, but I now have hope that I CAN achieve this mental and physical challenge after all.
    I’m going to follow the advice you gave above on pushing it to 60 mins, and see how I go on. Thanks again, you’re a star! πŸ™‚ x

  305. Paul says:

    I can already run for 30 mins, just not very fast. I’m training for the military so there’s a certain pace I need to run at, so I’m using this plan to work at my pace starting from the beginning, while still doing longer runs through the week at the pace I’m comfortable at. πŸ™‚

  306. Lindsay says:

    Hi, I’ve just found your website and am going to start the plan this week! I’m getting married in July and still need to shed baby weight following the birth of my baby a year ago! I will let you know how I go!

  307. Aravinda says:

    Hi i just found this site. Im still very new to this jogging plan. I read your article thoroughly and found it very interesting also after today`s work I`m going to start this.I have one question, which is even if I climb a few stairs quickly I felt like breathless specially in subways and out of juice of my body.What should i do as beginner?? is the plan good for me or do u have something else which i should fallow ??? thanks

  308. beginrunning says:

    Apologies yet again for the late replies

    @Mark – Congratulations on completing Week 10 and for getting back into it after injury! Glad to hear you found the plan easy to follow.

    @Mandy – That’s great news. Your achievement must feel really good – especially after a 20 year break! Good luck with the 10k and increasing to 60 mins. Thanks for the update and kind words πŸ™‚

    @Paul – That’s a novel use of the program and I’d be interested to hear how it works out for you.

    @Lindsay – Good luck with the running plan and planning the wedding!

    @Aravinda – This plan is aimed at beginners and I got breathless very easily when I first started. However you should check with your doctor before starting to make sure it’s safe for you to exercise.

  309. rosina frank says:

    Ijust completed the 10kGate River Run as a walker for the first time at age 52. I was so pleased and excited that I have decided to do the Running plan. I am starting on week 2 now and feeling great and just wish I had started this years ago. I want to be able to run the whole 10k river run next year in march2013/ i would like to hear from anyone who would give me advice on how to achieve this goal thankyou for your help

  310. Aravinda says:

    Hi i just did my firs day…though I felt breathless I managed to do it.only thing about the counting after tomorrow im going again.till then arios

  311. Christine says:

    I just started running again. I have not ran for at lest 4 years or more. I didn’t find your tips until after I ran.Will fallow the plan when I go out for a run again.

    What I want to ask you after 3o min run what is the best thing to feed your self. As i find I am hungry after a run.

  312. Jeanne says:

    I have been doing spin 3x week and body pump 2x wk. But I want to learn to run so I can do a half marathon. Should I continue to do the body pump class, but give up the spin class completely, or do the 30 min run in the mornings before work and the classes after work as I normally would? I have 26 weeks to work up to the half marathon, which is 10 weeks for this and 16 weeks for marathon training. Wish me luck!

  313. beginrunning says:

    @Rosina Frank – Congratulations on the River Run walk and starting the plan. I’ve posted a comment above on increasing distance which might be helpful . By the time you get to the event ideally you want to be able to run further than 10k but if it’s recreational and you’re not trying to break any records the important thing is to have fun and not worry if you have to walk for a bit πŸ™‚

    @Christine – I normally have a protein shake with some carbs after a run but it’s worth trying different recovery snacks / drinks until you find a favorite. You can even try making up your own although often a banana is the quickest and easiest if you just want some energy.

    @ Jeanne – You might find doing a morning run and evening classes too much to begin with. Although a lot depends on age, current fitness and strength and you could try cutting all the classes for a couple of weeks or stopping the spin classes and reducing body pump. Reintroduce them gradually and see how it goes. You want to avoid excessive volume of exercise leading injury or just over training but if you’re really young and/or fit this will be less of a problem. Since you’re used to high intensity exercise don’t forget to run slowly and good luck πŸ™‚

  314. Rosemary S says:

    Hi all completed the program 3 weeks ago, running 30 mins 3 times a week. Did struggle when I had to change my normal route as its getting pretty dark. New route has hills and was really feeling it after about 15 mins. Stuck it out but my pace has really slowed down. Iam pretty proud of myself though & know I will improve with time.

  315. Baleegh says:

    Hi, I am 42 height 6′ 3″, I have not been running at all since long, I once reduce 32 KGs back in 2007 since then I am not running at all and putting up weight, as of today I am 100 KGs or 220 lbs, I am going to start the running from today, and it will be running only, run and walk doesn’t seems to be fit with my body, although it may depend from person to person, my target this time is to go up to 75 KGs or 165 lbs, I will be running on daily basis for the next 40 days starting from 600 m for the first day and increasing 100 m distance daily, I did this same in 2007 and lost 32 KGs in 120 days. Now I am going to start it again at 42 years any special advice you want to add please let me know, after running I will be doing light than med and hard board exercises to keep me in shape. Apart from this I am a smoker for past 25 years and cannot quit so I will be running with my smoking. Whatever the case may be, but if you think anything can help me out here please let me know thanks

  316. FeT says:

    I am going to start your program tomorrow morning. I am really excited to get back into the grove. I have always been an athlete and even have a degree in Adult Fitness…but I started working long hours and didnt give myself time to work out the last few months (trainers need trainers too!). I have always loved running, but have struggled with it b/c of bad shin splints (had therapy for it though high school to get me through basketball seasons). I tend to go through off and on stages of running. When my shins really start to bother me, i opt for swimming lap instead. But I MISS RUNNING! And i moved to chicago a few months back and its a great city to run in and to run along the beach. I like how your program is set up b/c with my shin splints I have to progress my running pretty slow when it’s been a while. I tend to push myself to hard when i start a new program and end up in to much pain…but i think this will keep me on a good pace. I will let you know how it goes!

  317. beginrunning says:

    @Rosemary S – Nice going! Congratulations and thanks for the update.

    @Baleegh – Hope you’re successful with your plan. Only thing I can suggest is to get medical advice before starting this type of exercise since smoking puts a lot more strain on your cardiovascular system, especially after that long and even more so if you’re going to continue. If you get the all clear then go easy on post run exercise, run slowly and don’t be afraid to postpone any increases if you feel if it’s too much. Good luck.

    @FeT – It sounds like you’ve a great place to run! Looking forward to hear how your get on and will be great to get a professionals feedback. Good luck with the shins!

  318. mandy says:

    Hi, just a quick update… I began this programme in January, and last week, I ran just over 10k (6.33 miles) for the first time EVER in 1 hour, 3 mins, 11 seconds πŸ™‚ I was soooooo chuffed at myself, and I have you to thank for this achievement! πŸ™‚ My aim is to run the 10K in less than 60 minutes so I still have some improvement to make, but I still have 26 more sleeps until Race Day so I’m feeling optimistic πŸ™‚ Now that I have reached the target distance, am I best to try and keep doing that 3 times a week or should I try and increase it to gain more stamina? πŸ™‚

  319. beginrunning says:

    @Mandy – Congratulations – that’s a real achievement and a great time on 10K too! It’s good to hear the plan was helpful – thanks πŸ™‚ Probably best not to increase distance by too much before the race even though you’ve got 25 recovery sleeps left now πŸ™‚ If you’ve run 10k once then doing it three times per week could be too much. With 3 runs per week you could try 2 shorter runs of 40 – 45 mins and one long run of 65 mins and then the next long run go up to 70 mins. It depends how your runs are planned but avoid doing the long run close to the race. This should mean you’re able to run a bit further than 10k but if the extra training feels too much or you get surprising new twinges then cut back so you’re fit for race day. Hope you have fun race, good luck and let us know how it goes!

  320. Baleegh says:

    Dear Beginrunning
    My running has started as planned
    Day 1 – Running 4 Mins then 1 Min then 1 Min and Distance was 600 m then 100 m then 100 m
    Day 2 – Running 6 Mins then 1 Min then 1 Min and then 1 Min and Distance was 800 m then 100 m then 100 m then 100
    Day 3 – Running 7.5 Mins then 1 Min and 1 Min and Distance was 1100 m then 150 m then 150 m
    Day 4 – Running 10 Mins then 1 Min and 1 Min and Distance was 1300 m then 100 m then 100 m
    Day 5 – Running 11.5 Min and 1.5 Mins and Distance was 1500 m and 200 m
    Day 6 – Running 13.5 Mins and 30 Seconds and Distance was 1650 m and 150 m
    Day 7 – Running 16 Mins and Distance 2000 meters
    and Today is Day 8, i started feeling like a horse
    As reagrd smoking is concerned it was a little stress on Day 1 but after a week its effect is almost negligible and I dont find it difficut running while being a smoker rather i put off my cigarette and then immediately starts running and i dont find it uncomfortable, i have to quit but only God knows when till then i am ok with it…….

    My plan is to increase the running time to thirty mins and time with me is almost at max 20 days and then maintain it at the same time and distance should be 5 kms daily with no breaks on even sundays just to remind i run daily with increase in time and distance. The entire running followed by light exercise will consume almost 40 mins a days which i think is quite manageable. Furthermore advise me the time for running as i am running close to sunset. Would it be better to run in the morning or the evening do let me know as well

  321. beginrunning says:

    @Baleegh – Great to hear you’ve started running and interesting to see your plan although it goes against most of the principles of the one I’ve outlined πŸ™‚ If you have a look at the plan and some of the comments above there maybe a few things that are useful. A couple of points are that in your plan there are no recovery days and the increases are large close together, so no time for the body to adapt and more chance for injury. Your intervals look like a mix of anaerobic and aerobic sessions but perhaps that was the intention. Smoking creates separate issues, blood oxygen levels probably being the most immediate, but it looks like you’ve got that in hand. Everyone’s different when it comes to a favorite time to run so it’s a case of trial and error really. Good luck.

  322. Baleegh says:

    Dear Beginrunning thanks for the advices i found morning session of running is quite impressive and more energetic, coming over to the running update
    Day 8 Running 16 mins and 30 seconds distance is 2150 meters
    Day 9 Running 8 mins and distance 1200 meters
    Day 10 – Rest due to my post graduate exam, i am in final semester of MBA with majors in Human Resource
    Day 11 Running 17 mins and distance 2350 meters
    Day 12 Running 18 mins and distance 2500 meters
    Day 13 Running 20 mins and distance 2700 meters
    Day 14 Running 23 mins and distance 3010 meters
    Day 15 Running 25 mins and distance 3250 meters, day 15 is today May 6th, 2012
    I think i am going quite good, what you say?

  323. Kat0163 says:

    Hi, I’m onto week 3 of the programme and am finding it really helpful, so thank you so much for sharing it!!!

    I’m just looking for some advice as I generally do some different cardio through the week (ie I’m at the gym doing a 30 min spin class 3 mornings a week and usually swim 1/2 times a week). Would you advise doing these activities on rest days or combining them with my running days.

    I’m trying to loose weight at the moment so really don’t want to give up the swimming and spin if I can help it, but I’m also keen to avoid any injury! Thanks πŸ™‚

  324. Jasmine says:

    I need to thank you. I just did my first 30 minute run in my ENTIRE LIFE. I’ve been following this play from week 1 and I cannot explain to you the sense of accomplishment I have right now! It was tough, there was literally times when I thought it wasn’t going to happen, that I would never get here, but I have to say not only have I come out of this actually having DONE it, but I actually enjoy running and look forward to it every morning.

    This was the most accessible, uncomplicated way for me to start running and it worked. So…thank you. :]

  325. beginrunning says:

    @Baleegh – I think you may need to slow down πŸ™‚

    @Kat0163 – Good to hear the plan is useful. As you’re already used to exercise and have a good level of fitness I guess it will depend on how much extra volume of exercise your body can handle and still adapt. Although you may not get injured straight away you may feel tired and instead of making gains you start to lose out. I would prefer to do the other activities on non running days. A slow swim is more like active recovery so that’s not too bad πŸ™‚ If you’re really into spinning and swimming you could extend the running plan over a longer period and just run twice a week giving you a couple of proper rest days. I’d like to hear what you find works best. Good luck!

    @Jasmin. Wonderful – Congratulations! I’m glad the plan was helpful and I really appreciate your comments. It’s such a great feeling when you finally get to that 30 mins, especially after those tough days. Thanks for sharing your experience which will be an encouragement for anyone struggling and I hope you have have lots more fun running πŸ™‚

  326. mandy says:

    Today I finally ran the race that I’ve been preparing for since January!! With your help and good advice, I managed to run 10k in 59:32 and raised the grand total of Β£418 for my chosen charity, VSO πŸ™‚ I really cant thank you enough!! This easy start plan kept me motivated all the way, and turned what I thought would be a nightmare into what I now find to be an enjoyable pastime. WOW, I NEVER thought I’d say that!! lol I’ve even thinking about entering another in September now. Keep up the good work on here, because if I can achieve this, you can help ANYONE to do the same! πŸ™‚ Thanks again. xxx

  327. beginrunning says:

    @Mandy – Wow that’s a great time and well within your target! You must be really happy and I expect VSO are pretty happy too πŸ™‚ I thought your training time on 10k was good so you really had a great race and to do this after just a few weeks is even more impressive.

    Thanks your comments on the plan, it’s good to hear it’s been helpful and makes keeping this page going worthwhile. Good luck with that September race and keep us posted!

  328. Amber says:

    I’m only 15 but for my own good I want to start running. The problem is that im not very athletic. Im pretty weak but did pass PE class. I was wondering if you recommend that i use this plan to sharpen my running abilities as i’m merely a teenager who can only run a half mile without stopping. I plan on doing my running on a treadmill, already have shoes, and i want to start asap! Also do you have any advice for a newbie like me? Thank you πŸ™‚

  329. Adil says:


    I’ve just started running and I was wondering how I would adapt this to an hours worth of running a day Monday – Thursday!


  330. Hari says:


    I have come to week 3 of program two weeks ago. Third day of week I couldn’t finish 4th part of 5 minute run, manage to run 2,5 minutes and I couldn’t to do more. So I decided to repeat that week. First day of repetition I finished all 30 minutes, done stretching and start walking home. After a few minutes I come to crossroad and waited for green traffic light to light for me to cross. Suddenly I felt like I am going to fall and get lost. Calming and deep breathing didn’t help. I was afraid to fall on road. I managed to reach nearby local ambulance by foot, and then it started to be scary. I couldn’t control my limbs, I got cramps in arms (couldn’t open my fists and couldn’t stretch arms normally), stomach, legs, couldn’t talk normally. But never lost consciousness. They gave me salt water intravenous, oxygen, and drive me to hospital. There they check mine ECG, sugar level, complete blood analysis and all was normal. Blood pressure was low at one point, but not too much. I did eat before running (one banana and one energy bar), drink water, but not drinking during running. I was out running in shade at 9 in morning in day which at noon had temperature of about 38 degrees Celsius.

    After hour and half in hospital I was back home and even went to work. No consequences so far.

    I am write this as warning, be careful of temperatures and hydrate yourself. And to ask, symptoms I described, what could be? In hospital doctor (he said he is runner himself) said it is not heart issue, it probably could be that in one point there was short oxygene/blood level reaching head/brain. Next option was heat stroke or losing minerals and electrolytes.

    Now I am waiting for cooler weather and to start again, probably with lower intensity.

    Sorry for errors, English is not my native language.


  331. Run Mikey Run says:

    ^^^^^^ Thats not the most encouraging comment for someone who is just about to start :). However Hari, I am glad you are well. Ok, So Im like 44 years old and gave up smokin a year ago. I put on 3 stone in weight which took me to 20 stone. This unfortunatley gave me high blood pressure and diabetes and some high chloresterol. Its taken me since January this year to get down to 18 stone through dieting but I seem to have reached a bit of a plateau, so i think its time I got up off my ass and give this a go !!. Iwill start tomorrow…..Run Mikey Run πŸ™‚

  332. Hari says:

    Thank you Mikey, I am sorry if my post was discouraging, it wasn’t mine intention. I wrote it as warning so that other beginners don’t have to learn lesson hard way on themselves, but to learn from mine experience.

    I am 43, quit smoking 15 years ago after 15 years of smoking (early starter), about 10 kg more weight that I should have (186cm tall, about 100kg weight), some cholesterol, some triglycerides, and from time to time high blood pressure. But I do climb mountains when my job allow me and commuting with bicycle. I started running not for running itself, but to improve health, fitness and to (hopefully) prepare for some high mountains I plan to climb in future.

    As you can see I understand you. I hope mine experience didn’t disturb your plans to run, as I wrote I will start again, but I will be more careful, as everybody should.

    All the best.

  333. beginrunning says:

    @Amber – Sorry for the late reply. The best thing would be to show this plan to your PE teacher and parents and ask them if it’s OK for you to do. There may be a good reason why you shouldn’t do it which they can talk through with you. I think you’re probably more athletic than you think as you’ve passed PE class and you can already run half a mile without stopping πŸ™‚ I couldn’t run that far when I started! The best advice for a newbie is to focus on running slowly as there’s a tendency to go too fast. Good luck, and if you do start the plan it would be great to hear how you get on.

    @Hari – That was a nasty experience and a warning for all of us to be careful. It sounds like you’re quite fit anyway from bike riding and mountaineering. Had you thought of having more tests before you resume running? I hope you get back to full health soon and thanks for posting your experiences.

    @Run Mikey Run – Great achievement losing that weight and congratulations giving up smoking! It’s important to check with your doctor that this plans OK for you before starting (as Hari’s post shows πŸ™‚ ). Hope you get the all clear and please let us know how you get on. Good Luck!

  334. Run Mikey Run says:

    Well….Day one is out the way and the good news is that I managed to at least have a go (not beating myself up that i could not get to the 2 mins though) ….and ……………I am not dead :).
    Based on this good start i am now immediatley off to have another go……..Mikey

  335. Run Mikey Run says:

    Ok……This time i adhered strictly to the plan. Warmed up for three mins with a brisk walk and then 5×2 min runs with the 5×4 min walks. I think on the first run i had a little too much zest and maybe went too fast as i was really out of breath. As the repetitions went on i slowed down to a comfortable run and managed to get through it all without feeling that it was too exausting………I feel like this is a good result !!! and a very small but personal achievement :). I even got a runkeeper app for the phone and it tells me i did 2.86 miles in 33 mins with an average speed of 12mph……..Hari, you have not put me off in any way. Good luck to you ‘have been’ runners and to you who are reading this and thinking about putting on a pair of trainers for the first time in years. I promise it will be worth your while :).

  336. Hari says:

    @beginrunnig, thanks

    I haven’t seriously think to do all needed tests specified for beginner athletes and reason is how health care is organized in my country, but I did repeat blood pressure, ECG and some other tests and everything is OK. When time and money allow I will make specific athlete tests, and I think every one should.

    Looking through internet I discovered condition called Hyponatremia. Basically it is drinking too much water (mostly during sport activities) and by doing it diluting electrolytes in body. Symptoms are similar to those I had situation I wrote about. One can read more at:

    @Run Mikey Run, good start, and I advise if you feel you can not stick to plan, adapt it to yourself. For example, after 3/3 week, if you can’t do 5/2,5, try for example 4/2 or 4/3 or whatever. I don’t trying to make smart, only having experience I had I think it is better to work as one can than to stick with plan which is not suitable to particular person even if everybody else is fine with original plan. There are also modified plans to this plan which have as goal 20 minutes in 10 weeks instead of 30, so maybe some people would find those plas more doable.

    Good luck to all.

  337. […] 10: Run 30 minutes. Repeat once and celebrate! source: The reason why I chose this is because of how gradual it is. I don’t particularly like […]

  338. SassySarah says:

    THANKS! Great guide here πŸ™‚ I started in March of this year, 6 weeks after the birth of baby no.2. I hit my first 30 min run at the beginning of June. It’s a bit late coming by to say thanks, but I did a 5k over the past weekend (first since I was a teenager!) and felt fantastic. This is a springboard for me to jump into long distance running program in preparation for a marathon next year. Big goals are totally manageable in small increments! Great way to ease back into running, so a great big *high five* to @beginrunning for posting this for us x

  339. beginrunning says:

    @SassySarah – Great to hear the plan was helpful and thanks for the high five. Congratulations on completing that 5k especially so soon after baby no.2! It’s such a boost when you get to 5k, definitely a milestone πŸ™‚

    You’re so right about tackling goals in small increments and it seems to work for other stuff too. Good luck with your marathon preparation.

  340. Hari says:

    It happened again.

    I already wrote my experience. And yesterday I tried to run again. And it happened again, but in much lighter form. “ants” through arms, starting to getting dark in front of eyes. Pulse almost 170. And that happened at second part of first day of 2 run/4 walk week. Went to doctor, everything is OK again. I scheduled some deeper exams with doctors, but it will take months considered waiting list here. It looks like running is no for me. Strange, as I ride bicycle without problems and do some other forms of exercise. So, I started to walk instead of running and again after sharp walk, my pulse went to 135 (which I wanted, between 127 and 146), but continued to rise above 160, so I had to slow down walking. I can’t believe my shape is so bad.After exams I will see what to do with running. I think problem is my bad shape, not medical problems, but will see about that.

    Good luck to all of you.

  341. Carmen says:

    Thank you for this. So much. With every stage, I think to myself, “I don’t think I can go further” and then one day I do. I’ve attempted other running programs, but this one I really like. I can’t thank you enough. :)!

  342. Melissa says:

    I started running last year with the above guides and enjoyed it, I stopped when it got to hot to run outside. This year I started the same plan (April) with a running club at a local city park with an inside track. It has been 3 months and I am now at 30 minutes of running and according to the layout of the track I am running a little over 2 miles. πŸ™‚
    I am running my first 5K the end of Sept and have really enjoyed the whole process of getting stronger and building endurance.
    Last night to test my self I ran a mile as fast as I could just to see what I could do and I ran it in 12m 37s’s! This is the fastest I have ever run a mile, even when I was a teenager. I just focused on running harder, breathing and sped up and slowed down as I could. This took over 2 minutes off my time and has made me feel so good about myself. Next week I will be back to the 30 minute run but this week I am challenging myself.
    Thanks for your site, it started me running safely and I am thankful for that and the reward I get every time I run!

  343. Carla says:

    I have never been a runner but have always enjoyed weight training and long walks. I tried my first 5K in April just to see if I could do it and I finished it. I finished in the bottom 15% but knew I could do better. I tried to improve my time but ended up hurting myself instead. I found this plan by accident and even though I never smoked, I thought it would be good for me since I am over 50. I hope to finish the program in three more weeks and have my second 5K scheduled for next month. I can see improvement every time I run and my legs don’t hurt anymore. Thank you for making a difference in my life.


  344. Balajee says:

    Day 1 of week 1. Feeling tired but good.

    One thing I added that i found great was to start off with a 4min walk before the run.
    Hoping to go all the way!

  345. Weimj396 says:

    I just came across this today. As many as five years ago I did the same plan in a “learn to run a 5 k” women’s running group with much success. Recently I was diagnosed as hypothyroid with a level of 18. Normal is 4.5 !! I’m now on medication. I have abdominal obesity, much like the greater number of Americans. I’m so sick of it!! 157lbs and 5’6″. Chubby!! Went back to the gym last week.axing out my runs… Doing 30-45 mins of speed walking on treadmill at 4.3. I went out today on the roads and felt like a lead weight! I think I have to lose the idea of how I was yeas ago… I so badly want the sensation of “automatic running” and my hip bones on autopilot. I rembet that. I have learned to take a deep breath and know its one step at a time. You can’t go for broke!
    I’m worried that I won’t lose weight because of my slow metabolism!! Btw… I was 10k – marathon runner up until the age of 29 when I moved to the US from Canada. I am now 40. What’s your take on the “21 days to a healthy addiction”?

  346. Baleegh says:

    I am 42 years of age and I had my angioplasty done on 10th Sep 2012. I have one stent placed in my artery. I had a severe pain in my left upper chest and went to hospital; the stent was placed on the date mentioned above. I was a chain smoker and used to smoke almost 40 cigarettes a day. After the placement of one stent I have reduced the smoking to around 20 per day. I have no problem now, my arteries are clear and I have no chest pain at all. I still not able to start an exercise plan which I hope to start within a week. I tried to quit smoking but failed miserably. Now my doctor says fpr me running is criminal and he asks me to walk daily for 30 minutes

  347. dispatcher69 says:

    I am new to all this running thing! I quit smoking about 1 yr ago & have decided that I would love to get into running. I havent worked out in YRS & am out of shape & have gained some weight since quitting smoking. (which im ok with important that i quit smoking). I tried jogging a bit & found that I had a very difficult time breathing & felt that my throat & chest were going to explode lol & i dont know if this is normal or not. I dont have any pain at all so its not like it freaks me out but just want to know if its normal & if it gets better? Also is there any specail way to breath while beginning ?
    Thank you

  348. Carmen says:

    I finished this program and am now trying to increase speed and distance. Thank you so much for having this post and keeping it up. I tried a different one before I started this and I couldn’t get into it (even on a practical level). This was simple, easy to follow, and challenging (but not enough to quit). I can’t thank you enough. I don’t want to imagine life without running and thankfully, I don’t have to, because I run every other day. I will run a marathon someday and I’ll post a comment when I do. Thank you again. I went from zero activity to running. Cannot thank you enough for this program.

  349. Misti says:

    On day 3 and loving it so far. πŸ™‚ I have never ran EVER but realize that due to recent life changes (no longer caring for horses daily) I MUST add a cardio subsititute. Also my Mom was recently diagnosed (at a young age) with heart disease and this has given me motivation. I started your program 3 days ago, running through the mud puddles on my farm, and I am having a blast. Thanks!

  350. Misti says:

    Thought I should add- The first 2 minutes are the absolute hardest!! After that, the body kicks into gear and it feels great! Hard, yes, but great!

  351. Mary Anne says:

    I have a question…I just started this program and was wondering if it is a total of 5 or is it one and 5 repeats?

    Week 1: Run 2 minutes, walk 4 minutes. Repeat 5 times


  352. beginrunning says:

    It’s the first time logging in for a few months so many apologies to those who didn’t get a reply when they posted a comment.

    @Hari – I hope your doctor was able to identify the problem and recommend a course of action.

    @Carmen – I’m glad this program works for you and thanks for the words of support.

    @Melissa – It’s great to hear you’re running faster than you were as a teenager and maybe having more fun too!

    @Carla – Thanks for your comments and support. I hope you completed the plan and the 5K went well.

    @Weimj396 – It was great to read your enthusiastic comment. Maybe you’ve got that ‘automatic running’ feeling back now! I’ve not come across the ’21 Days to a Healthy Addiction’ but will look for it. Good Luck.

    @Baleegh – I hope you’re making a good recovery and have now managed to quit smoking.

    @dispatcher69 – I definitely hated that breathless feeling at first but it’s something you get used to. Once your aerobic fitness has increased then you shouldn’t experience it too much on this plan as you should be running slowly. However it’s important to get a medical check first even if you don’t have any pains.

    There’s no special way to breath at the beginning, but you do adjust your speed to make breathing easier. When you start the plan,even going slowly can be a challenge – it certainly was for me!

    @Carmen – Thanks for your kind comments and I glad the plan helped you to enjoy running. It’s a great feeling once it becomes familiar. I can’t imagine life without running either, although I never thought I’d say that! I look forward to hearing how you get on with that marathon.

    @Misti – It sounds like you’re having loads of fun right from the start – great stuff!

    @Mary Anne – It’s a total of 5. That way you’ve had a total of 30 minutes of activity when you’ve completed them all (20mins running 10mins walking). HTH

  353. Emily says:

    I used this program to help me start running and last night I completed my first 5k. I was able to run the whole thing without stopping and it made me so happy! Thank you so much for sharing this, it really helped me get started!

  354. beginrunning says:

    @Emily – Congratulations and I’m glad the plan helped get you started. What a great way to end the year! Thanks for stopping by to post your experience.

  355. Brook says:

    I just started this program and I am so excited. I will let you know how it goes!

  356. Petal25 says:

    On the the third week of the program going really well so far. A bit of pain in my knees, but I supposed it’s to be expected when you are 48.

  357. Sumit Gaba says:

    Just Completed 1st week and what a feeling …. i weight around 110Kg and could not believe my self …… walk and run… a perfect combination ….. thanks a lot for sharing this info …. in next 1 year i wish to run atleast 6 Km … i hope i will be able to do it… πŸ™‚

  358. beginrunning says:

    @Brook – Good Luck with the program!

    @Petal25 – Congratulations on getting to week 3. A few twinges do seem to be the norm as you get older, I’ve certainly got a few! But If you’re getting any pain then you should stop and get it checked out. It may be something simple to fix like overpronation, ITB or just weak quadriceps and a physiotherapist should be able point you in the right direction.

    When you start the program reveals our weaknesses and biomechanical inefficiencies and it’s important to stop running and deal these straight away. Good luck and let us know how it goes πŸ™‚

    @Sumit Gaba – Congratulations on completing week 1, you’ll be running 6k before you know it!

  359. […] that just felt like a really, really lazy thing to believe, even though I had tried the Couch to 5k program before and […]

  360. George says:

    49 years of age program stars tomorrow. Can’t wait to get back running and losing weight.

  361. Tracie Bennett says:

    Thank you for all this information. I’ve been reading the responses and feedback. It has been most helpful. I’ve just reached 30 minutes of constant walking/running on a treadmill and I feel alive at that point.

  362. beginrunning says:

    @George – Good luck and have fun getting back into running!

    @Tracie Bennett – Congratulations! I does feel great when you get to the 30 min mark.

  363. Dave says:

    Just finished my second run of week 1. I have the runtastic app and I’m showing 7.5mph as around my average on running and 3mph as my average on walking. Is that what it should be?

  364. Dave says:

    one more thing, would it be okay to run everyday at 30 minutes once done the program?

  365. beginrunning says:

    @Dave – There’s no need to worry about going fast enough with this plan as your speed depends on existing fitness, route etc. You’re aiming for a slow run rather than completing each session as fast as possible. If you can hold a conversation at your current pace then that speed is fine.This is difficult when starting out but is the sort of pace you should aim for. When you’ve finished the plan you could run everyday if you were up for it but a day off is always nice πŸ™‚ You may find there’s a more advanced plan for speed or distance you want to try out anyway. Good luck!

  366. Ron says:

    A couple of things: in 1897 I read a book by a marathon runner (a female) who had a plan very similar to the one here. I worked my way up to 30 minutes of runnning. It was addicting–in a good way, but I would run two or three days in a row because it felt so invigorating. However, before long my knees acted up and I knew I had to take a couple of days off. I never got back into it. Bottom line, your plan showing days of rest are very important. Secondly, I saw previously that people asked about how to track the time for running and walking. Stores like Walmart usually have cheap digiital watches that have a stop watch feature. Thirdly and finally, I was trying to find a plan like the one I did in ’87 and I found you. Thank you!

  367. Ron says:

    p.s. Make that 1987, not 1897. *S*

  368. beginrunning says:

    @Ron – Good to hear your experience on rest days. They seem to get more important as you get older πŸ™‚ Great tip on finding cheap stopwatches too. Glad you found the plan helpful.

  369. sarah says:

    I’m so excited to have found this! I have decided that it’s time for me to lose this unwanted weight. I have been having dreams about running and I looked so amaxing in my dreams. I always thought running would be hard but this gives me hope that I can do it even if it will be a challenge. At 5’7 275 I hope to see some good results. I’m starting this challenge tomorrow πŸ™‚ I can’t wait!

  370. Sandra says:

    Hi I’m 43 been a 20 day smoker for 30 yrs and managed to give up, I hadn’t done any form of exercise in yrs and even hated it when I was a child, didn’t even walk anywhere was a couch potato, anyway I started running 6 weeks ago and at first a couldn’t run for 30 seconds without gasping for breath, now I am running a mile and a half with out stopping but I’m still finding it hard going I do it but I’m shattered at the end I’m not over weight or anything and I’m running it in 15 mins but I’m breathing hard at the end. Will it get ever get easier ?

  371. beginrunning says:

    @Sarah – Good Luck with the challenge – keep us posted!

    @Sandra – Congratulations on giving up smoking and getting started with running! First thing to say is that you should get a medical check just to make sure everything is OK. After that it may be that you’re just running a bit too fast. You’ve improved a lot in six weeks considering you couldn’t even go for 30 seconds without gasping for breath so your body is adapting to the demands. You could try starting from Week 7 or 8 of the Program and see how it goes. Don’t forget to take it slow and it will get easier πŸ™‚ Good luck and let us know how you get on.

  372. Wilson Michael says:

    I,29,tried out this running programme for over a month in an attempt to maintain fitness level and increase my stamina.And let me admit,it made me tired,weary,exhausted,dizzy in just 2 repetitions for first 2 weeks.But with self-motivation and determination I didn’t give it up and now manage to run 5 min and walk 2.5 min in the 6th week without any discomforting panting and puffing and now feel quite refreshing after doing it.I will definitely recommend it to all of my friends.

  373. Rozie says:

    Hi, I am 42 years old and had a partial hysterectomy last August. I gained weight before and after surgery , I weighed 260 lbs, so i decided to hit the gym in order to lose weight. I started working out in December but i could hardly run for 1 minute straight, anyway i still tried working out with he help of my husband and lost 5 lbs….sometime in March i came upon your website and decided to try it along with some light weight training. During this time i have and my ups and downs repeating several stages, even extending week 6 for 3 weeks and took 2 weeks off with back pain. The only thing i did not follow was that i hit the gym everyday except Saturdays and Sundays. But today i can proudly say i ran my first 30 minutes straight without taking a rest! Thanks to you and your help i made it and i shall recommend your website to everyone i know. My current weight is 212! My goal is to be healthy and work out regularly.

  374. beginrunning says:

    @Wilson Michael – Thats great and congratulations on keeping at it!

    @Rozie – Congratulations! That’s an inspiring story and it’s wonderful to hear about your success. It will be a real help to anyone who’s thinking of getting fit or is struggling at the moment. It’s also a good example of how you can repeat or extend stages to fit your needs. Thanks for posting about your experience and for the kind comments. Good Luck!

  375. Smith Savannah says:

    I have also started running recently & finding it very tough to continue running. I usually try to run for 25-30 mins but after running 15 mins I just get breathless and very hard to continue. I think maybe your running plan will help me resolve my breathing problem.

  376. sofia cooper says:

    I,32,a working woman and a mother of two find hard to take care of my fitness in the hectic daily routine and have piled on heaps of fats in last few years.I found this running plan quite suitable for me to begin as I hate doing gym and weights.My only concern was whether I would be able to cope up with this rigorous schedule.I am in my week 1 and feel exhausted,tired after the run.I could do 4 repetitions in last 3 days and hoping to do full 5 repetitions as mentioned in the course in next 4 days.

  377. Christian says:

    Last year I had a miscarriage after which I had put on a lot of weight. I tried all means to lose weight, but it did not reduce. Then I started walking and found amazing results. My schedule was something similar to this,but i did only walking no running.

  378. […] Source:Β ”Easy start running plan – Run for 30 minutes in just 10 weeks“ […]

  379. I was always slim and skinny but never realized I put on so much of weight in last one year.I guess the work stress,sleep deprivation,lack of exercises and my habit of binging on fast food took a toll and within a blink of an eye, I found layers of fats accumulated on my body.
    I have been reading,researching the stuffs on reducing the weight from a long time and it looks like this is what exactly I was looking for.I am in my week 2 and am already finding it very refreshing and very light after the brisk walking.I could do only for 4 days in week 1 and skipped the rest out of exhaustion.But I am not giving up and slowly and steadily I am working towards my goal.

  380. Isaac Composition says:

    Running is the best physical activity that makes almost all the muscles work out especially the limbs and abdomen muscles.I was never a fitness freak, but last year my uncle had a cardiac arrest.And the reason that the doctors cited was ‘lack of exercise over the years’.From then on,I have become more cautious on doing regular physical activities.Though the schedule you have suggested to follow is tough and rigorous which will require a lot of self discipline and austerity,I am ready for the challenge.I am very motivated by this post and few comments mentioned above.This is my first week and I hope to do well in coming weeks.

  381. Lizzard says:

    Thought I would chime in for the seriously, no I mean SERIOUSLY out of shape peoples wanting to start a running/walking routine. I abandoned a routine I began last week for yours because the other one seemed a bit light weight after 6 days of of it. Yours seemed like it was reasonable and doable, but a bit more intensive and building. If that makes sense.

    So, I am starting from nothing. About 20 pounds overweight and NO exercise. Zero endurance, bar whatever I might have picked up from the last week. I decided to start at 1 minute of running and 5 walking like and earlier poster. However, I only got to 4 repetitions before I knew I needed to stop. Bad stuff was on it’s way.

    I feel okay with this for now. 2o minutes a day, three days a week, running for 60 seconds and then walking briskly for 5, four times. It’s not good, but it’s a start. Thanks for the structure. I will work into the routine proper from here, but I want to keep things at a place that doesn’t defeat me before I even start, you know?

  382. Maya says:

    I was always a sports person. I love working out and keeping fit. But last year after I suffered a miscarriage, my gynecologist advised me to slow down and not to work out too much. Now thanks to God, I am carrying again and this time doctor has advised me bed rest. Sometimes I feel my legs wanting to run and jog so much, but can’t help.

  383. Abigail normes says:

    After my daughters’ birth, I had put on a lot of weight. I really dint realize this until one of my friend mentioned it. Then I started browsing and found this blog. From then I have been following this running routine and feel light. It surely helps a lot.

  384. Dibble says:

    Just to say a big thanks to this blog author.

    With the running plan you outline here I’ve fianlly managed to get back running.

    My other (many) attempts have failed for having picked up injuries and trying to do much too soon. Calf injury kept recurring and despite building up, what I thought was slowly, it was obviously too quick every time…setting me back months each time.

    This time, I’ve been injury free and enjoying it immensely. At approaching 50 yrs old it pays to take your time and build up with the structure you outline here.

    Next stop Ironman.


  385. Vivek Saran says:

    Great online help to start running , I am a novice and just came through while doing a search for running schedule online , This is my first day of first week and somehow I could complete only 4 sessions of 2min run and 4 min walk . I completely agree with your idea to keep track of time and distance will come automatically .
    Thanks again for such a great post and wish me luck.

    • beginrunning says:

      @Vivek Saran Congratualtions on getting started. Don’t worry about not doing all five repeats the first time. One of the most common mistakes of novice runners is running too fast. You could try running slower next time and see if that helps. Good luck!

  386. sandy says:

    I just came across this site and I cannot believe the wealth of information I have read in less than 30 minutes. This site is GOLD for beginners and intermediate runners. I am training for my 3rd marathon and have completed 8 half marathons all in one year. I’ve been a runner off and on since I was in 6th grade but really took it to a different level a year ago and I am now 43. There are things I have learned throughout this time and I continue to learn more not only about running but how it’s important to cross train as well, to strengthen your core. Thank your for all your insight. I will definitely put this page as one of my favorites!!

  387. […] have listed below a running for beginners program from  It is a great way to get you started […]

  388. Jeanne M says:

    I’m 62 and 30 lbs overweight female who has been a gym enthusiast for years doing spinning and body pump classes on alternate days. I”ve always wanted to be able to run long distances just to say I can…. I will try your plan, but can I continue with my 60 minutes Body Pump (weight lifting class that works all areas of the body) 2-3 x per week on the days I don’t run?