Taking the First Steps: Running Plans Tailored for Beginners

It’s difficult to get from a sedentary lifestyle to a steady runner with good resistance to physical effort. Since progressing too fast can result in severe muscle soreness and even injuries, many workout plans are developed to allow a smooth transition towards a good fitness level safely yet effectively. Running is still one of the most popular cardio workouts because it’s cheap and easy to squeeze into a busy agenda since it doesn’t require scheduling an appointment and driving to the other side of the city.

The best running plans designed for Beginners

Running for beginners

We’ve selected three of the most popular running plans for you to choose from and start your race towards better health. All of them are effective, so you have to choose the one that suits you best. Also, if you’re in bad physical shape and/or have any health issues, it’s recommended you consult your doctor before engaging in any activity that requires physical effort.

Before you begin to run regularly, make sure you have proper equipment. Inappropriate clothing and shoes may cause discomfort, rashes, and even injuries. Also, don’t forget about adopting proper eating habits correlated with your running sessions. If you want to know more about how to eat right before and after a workout, you can read this article. Lastly, being a first-time runner or doing it after a long break may lead to some muscle soreness. Don’t worry, you can prevent muscle soreness by doing some stretching, having a good night’s sleep, and by eating well.

Couch to 5k

Week

1st Workout

2nd Workout

3rd Workout

1

Warmup walk 5 min. Run 60 sec. Walk 90 sec. Repeat 8 times (20 min.) Warmup walk 5 min. Run 60 sec. Walk 90 sec. Repeat 8 times (20 min.) Warmup walk 5 min. Run 60 sec. Walk 90 sec. Repeat 8 times (20 min.)

2

Warmup walk 5 min. Run 90 sec. Walk 120 sec. Repeat 6 times (21 min.). Warmup walk 5 min. Run 90 sec. Walk 120 sec. Repeat 6 times (21 min.). Warmup walk 5 min. Run 90 sec.  Walk 120 sec. Repeat 6 times (21 min.)

3

Warmup walk 5 min. Run 90 sec. Walk 90 sec. Run 3 min. Walk 3 min. Repeat 2 times (18 min.) Warmup walk 5 min. Run 90 sec. Walk 90 sec. Run 3 min. Walk 3 min. Repeat 2 times (18 min.) Warmup walk 5 min. Run 90 sec. Walk 90 sec. Run 3 min. Walk 3 min. Repeat 2 times (18 min.)

4

Warmup walk 5 min. Run 3 min. Walk 90 sec. Run 5 min. Walk 2 ½ min. Run 3 min. Walk 90 sec. Run 5 min.(21 min.) Warmup walk 5 min. Run 3 min. Walk 90 sec. Run 5 min. Walk 2 ½ min. Run 3 min. Walk 90 sec. Run 5 min.(21 min.) Warmup walk 5 min. Run 3 min. Walk 90 sec. Run 5 min. Walk 2 ½ min. Run 3 min. Walk 90 sec. Run 5 min.(21 min.)

5

Warmup walk 5 min. Run 5 min. Walk 3 min. Run 5 min. Walk 3 min. Run 5 min.(21 min.) Warmup walk 5 min. Run 8 min. Walk 5 min. Run 8 min.(21 min.) Warmup walk 5 min. Run 20 min.

6

Warmup walk 5 min. Run 5 min. Walk 3 min. Run 8 min. Walk 3 min. Run 5 min.(24 min.) Warmup walk 5 min. Run 10 min. Walk 3 min.Run 10 min.(23 min.) Warmup walk 5 min. Run 22 min.

7

Warmup walk 5 min. Run 25 min. Warmup walk 5 min. Run 25 min. Warmup walk 5 min. Run 25 min.

8

Warmup walk 5 min. Run 28 min. Warmup walk 5 min. Run 28 min. Warmup walk 5 min. Run 28 min.

9

Warmup walk 5 min. Run 30 min. Warmup walk 5 min. Run 30 min. Warmup walk 5 min. Run 30 min.

 8 week beginner’s plan

Week

Monday

Tuesday

Wednesday

Thursday

Friday

Saturday

1

Run 1 min. Walk 2 min. Repeat 10 times Walk 30 min. Run 1 min. Walk 2 min. Repeat 10 times. Walk 30 min. Run 1 min. Walk 2 min. Repeat 10 times. Run 1 min. Walk 2 min. Repeat 10 times.

2

Run 2 min. Walk 1 min. Repeat 10 times Walk 30 min. Run 3 min. Walk 1 min. Repeat 7 times. Run 2 min. Walk 30 min. Run 4 min. Walk 1 min. Repeat 6 times. Run 4 min. Walk 1 min. Repeat 6 times.

3

Run 5 min. Walk 1 min. Repeat 5 times. Walk 30 min. Run 5 min. Walk 1 min. Repeat 5 times. Walk 30 min. Run 6 min. Walk 1 min. Repeat 4 times. Run 2 min. Run 6 min. Walk 1 min. Repeat 4 times. Run 2 min.

4

Run 8 min. Walk 1 min. Repeat 3 times. Run 3 min. Walk 30 min. Run 9 min. Walk 1 min. Repeat 3 times. Walk 30 min. Run 10 min. Walk 1 min. Repeat 2 times. Run 8 min. Run 11 min. Walk 1 min. Repeat 2 times. Run 6 min.

5

Run 12 min. Walk 1 min. Repeat 2 times. Run 4 min. Walk 30 min. Run 13 min. Walk 1 min. Repeat 2 times. Run 2 min. Walk 30 min. Run 14 min. Walk 1 min. Repeat 2 times. Run 15 min. Walk 1 min. Run 14 min.

6

Run 16 min. Walk 1 min. Run 13 min. Walk 30 min. Run 17 min. Walk 1 min. Run 12 min. Walk 30 min. Run 18 min. Walk 1 min. Run 11 min. Run 19 min. Walk 1 min. Run 10 min.

7

Run 20 min. Walk 1 min. Run 9 min. Run 20 min. Walk 1 min. Run 9 min. Run 22 min. Walk 1 min. Run 7 min. Walk 30 min. Run 24 min. Walk 1 min. Run 5 min. Run 26 min. Walk 1 min. Run 3 min.

8

Run 27 min. Walk 1 min. Run 2 min. Run 20 min. Walk 1 min. Run 9 min. Run 28 min. Walk 1 min. Run 1 min. Walk 30 min. Run 29 min. Walk 1 min. Run 30 min.

4-week running plan

Week

1st Workout

2nd Workout

3rd Workout

1

Warm up 3 min.Run 2 min.Walk 2 min.Repeat 7 times.Cool down 3 min. Warm up 3 min.Run 2 min.Walk 2 min.Repeat 7 times.Cool down 3 min. Warm up 3 min.Run 2 min.Walk 2 min.Repeat 7 times.Cool down 3 min.

2

Warm up 3 min.Run 3 min.Walk 1 min.Repeat 7 times.Cool down 3 min. Warm up 3 min.Run 3 min.Walk 1 min.Repeat 7 times.Cool down 3 min. Warm up 3 min.Run 3 min.Walk 1 min.Repeat 7 times.Cool down 3 min.

3

Warm up 3 min.Run 4 min.Walk 1 min.Repeat 6 times.Cool down 3 min. Warm up 3 min.Run 4 min.Walk 1 min.Repeat 6 times.Cool down 3 min. Warm up 3 min.Run 4 min.Walk 1 min.Repeat 6 times.Cool down 3 min.

4

Warm up 3 min.Run 5 min.Walk 30 seconds.Repeat 6 times.Cool down 3 min. Warm up 3 min.Run 5 min.Walk 30 seconds.Repeat 6 times.Cool down 3 min. Warm up 3 min.Run 5 min.Walk 30 seconds.Repeat 6 times.Cool down 3 min.

5+

Continue to add 3-5 minutes to total running time every week until you reach your goal.    

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