Complete Beginner’s Running Plan: 0 to 5K

Regardless of your fitness level, you can start from zero and build up to running 30 minutes continuously in about 10 weeks. The beginner running plan below, does exactly that. It’s a ten-week run-walk plan, aimed at beginners in good health.

Aim to run 3 times a week, leaving a day to rest between runs. Some people take more time to recover between workouts and should run less often, while others recover very quickly and can run more. Therefore, listen to you body, and take time to recover when you need to and adjust the running plan accordingly (see how to follow this running plan, below).

Also be sure to meet your body’s daily nutritional requirements to aid the recovery process and fuel your runs. Having a snack an hour before your workout will increase your energy levels to help power you through your workout.

Beginner Running Plan

  • Warm up before you start with a 5 – 10 minute fast walk and cool down with 5 – 10 minutes of slow walking.
  • Aim to run 3 times a week.
  • Try to allow for a day of recovery between runs. On those days off you can do other workouts such as swimming, cycling or circuit training. Allow for one complete day of rest per week.
WeekRunning Workout PlanTotal Time
11 min run, 2 min walk (7x)21 minutes
22 min run, 2 min walk (5x)20 minutes
33 min run, 2 min walk (4x)20 minutes
45 min run, 2 min walk (3x)21 minutes
56 min run, 90 sec walk (3x)22 minutes
68 min run, 1 min walk (3x)27 minutes
710 min run, 1 min walk (3x)33 minutes
813 min run, 1 min walk (2x)28 minutes
915 min run, 1 min walk (2x)32 minutes
10Run 30 minutes continuously30 minutes

How to Follow this Running Plan

This program should suit beginners who are comfortable walking briskly for 30 minutes. If you are unable to walk 30 minutes at a brisk pace, start with a walking plan first.

Adjust this running plan to meet your own needs and fitness. Stay at the level you can handle until you feel able to move to the next stage. Do not exceed what you can do, listen to your body. It doesn’t matter if it takes you twenty weeks. The goal is to get there.

On the other hand, if you have been somewhat active before, you may find the program too easy and progress more quickly (or try the 4-week beginners running plan). In that case, simply move forward to the next level.

Remember to clear any exercise program with your doctor before starting, especially if you have a medical condition.

How Fast Should You Run?

Intensity. Run at moderate intensity, which is 60 – 70% maximum heart rate and walk briskly for the walking phases. You should be able to pass the “talk test.”

Pace. Your pace should be slower than you might think. And then slower still. You should be running at the slowest possible pace you can while still running. Run any slower and you’d have to walk. That’s your pace. You will get faster in time. But right now, you’re focused on simply becoming a runner.

If you run too fast, you’ll be too exhausted to repeat the intervals and will probably vow to never run again. So, take your time.

Intervals. The walking breaks are important too. Walking intervals:

  • Allow you to recover so that you can run for longer distances. Remember, you are running for endurance, not to sprint.
  • Break your run into manageable parts, decreasing the likelihood of aches, pain and injury. It also helps you to maintain proper running form.
  • Help you to feel great afterwards, not overwhelmingly fatigued and completely exhausted.

Running Gear

Running requires little gear. The most important? Running shoes and a high-impact sports bra. Everything else, if you need to buy it, can come later.

Running Shoes

Buy yourself some decent running shoes and you’ll be comfortable every step of the way. Get a foot assessment at your local running shoe store and buy shoes that are suited to your individual foot mechanics.

You don’t need to buy the most expensive shoes on offer but make sure you get good quality shoes that will enhance and not hinder your running. 

Read more: How to choose the best running shoes

Running Clothes & Sports Bra

Along with running shoes and well-fitted sports bra is a must. It should be suitable for high-impact exercise and perfectly fitted. Check out how to choose a sports bra.

Dress for comfort and according to the weather. You are going to get warm as you run so make sure you can vent yourself as you heat up.

Layers are always a good idea and a sunhat and sunglasses can make warm weather runs much more enjoyable.

Gloves and a fleece hat are more or less essential come winter time. Finally, wear clothes that will get you seen – especially if you run at night. 

Read more: What to wear running for every temperature

Running Watch

Because of its multiple uses, a running watch is a useful tool.  It can record distance, time, and pace and most running watches these days also have a heart rate monitor function.

The more expensive have GPS capabilities and can monitor route and distance information, which can be downloaded and stored to track performance for future use or comparison purposes.

As you’ll be alternating periods of walking and running, a watch will help ensure you stay on schedule. 

Running Bottle

If you are only running a short distance, chances are you won’t need a drink during your workout but if it is especially warm or you are running a long way, you may need to take on hydrating fluids during your workout.

There are specially designed running water bottles available that fit comfortably around your hand and contain just enough water to ensure you don’t go thirsty during a run. 

Running Technique

While running is a very natural and simple activity, that doesn’t mean you can’t do it wrong-ish! Running will probably never feel effortless but that’s kind of how it should look.

Running smoothly with proper running form makes your running gait more efficient so you can run further and running will feel easier. It also reduces the risk of injury and muscle imbalances.

Here are a few tips to get you started: 

  • Run tall. Lift your head and keep your shoulders down and back. Imagine there is a balloon on a string attached to the top of your head!
  • Run quiet. If you arrival is announced by loud breathing and thumping footfalls, you’re probably wasting a lot of energy. Try to keep your breathing smooth and regular, and your footfalls as quiet as possible. Remember; noise is wasted energy. 
  • Run light. Run lightly as though you are on sand and are trying not to leave any footprints. While this may be difficult at first, you will be rewarded with a much more economical running style which will carry you further and faster for less effort. 

Read more: How to run with proper form

Running is an accessible, natural and effective way to get fit. But most crucial thing is to you stick with it. As the old running adage goes, start slow and finish strong. While normally applied to racing, this saying holds true for starting out too.

Rein in your enthusiasm a little at first, follow the beginner running plan, and you will be rewarded by a long and enjoyable running career. 

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  1. im on week 3 and have been doing the program 6 times a week, with one day off each week. last week i suddenly got leg cramps while running and had to stop running for a bit, but the next day i came back and tried to run through it, though i pretty much died after i finished. Its getting better, my thighs dont hurt as much but it still aches dully, my friend says it should stop after this week, im not sure. do you have any tips or advice?

    • Hi Sam,
      I’m sorry to hear that you’re getting leg cramps. The first thing to do is to check with your doctor as to what they think might be causing this. They know you, your medical history, any medication you’re on, and can examine you.
      Secondly, this program is designed to be done 3 – 5 times a week. 6 times a week is too much. It doesn’t allow for enough recovery time. Recovery is key – it’s when your body gets stronger. Without sufficient recovery you’re setting yourself up for injury. This running program is all about taking it slow and easy, and to listen to your body. It’s designed to get you there slowly, without injury, and for it to be enjoyable. If your doctor says it’s fine, dial back to running 3 times a week and see how it goes.

      Other than overdoing it, a few things can cause leg cramps in runners including:

      • It might be the way you run. Your doctor might refer you to see a specialist health professional to check your walking and running gait/ biomechanics. They might prescribe you a specialist shoe insert to correct any biomechanical issues.
      • It could simply be your running shoes. It’s important to get a running shoe that fits your foot and running style. You can get a professional running shoe assessment at most good running stores.
      • Make sure you stretch properly before running, i.e. dynamic stretching (e.g. hip circles, butt kicks, walking lunges) before your workout. Don’t do static stretching (traditional stretch and hold stretching) before you run.
      • Always warm-up and cool-down with walking.
      • Take your time. If you need to, repeat a week. Listen to your body. Don’t push your body further than it wants to go. If you’re fine one week, but the next week is too challenging, repeat the previous week. You’ll still get stronger and will be able to handle the next week better.
      • Hydration and electrolyte balance can cause muscle cramping. Make sure you’re adequately hydrated. If you’re a salty sweater you can try electorlyte tablets to add to your water.
      • What does your pre-workout snack or meal look like? Exercising hungry or on an empty stomach is a bad idea for beginners. Make sure you’re properly fuelled. See this on what to eat before and after a workout
      • Include strength training exercises for runners, to strengthen the key muscles runners use. Read more about that here.

      Hope this helps!

  2. I’m severely overweight 105kg (231lbs) and unfit, and I can’t even tho the first routine (1min jog, 2 mins walk x7) 🙁 Tried doing it but I can only do half which then my body is unable to continue no matter how hard i mentally try. Any tips please?

    • Hi Hadi, It’s best to first get the all clear from your doctor, to make sure you’re physically fine to start working out. If you’re good to go, then it’s probably best to start off with the cross-trainer/ elliptical machine. It’s feels much easier than running because there’s little to no impact. But you can still improve your cardiovascular fitness and burn calories, just like running. It feels a lot easier, so you can do more. It’s also easier on the joints. Once you get stronger from training on the elliptical machine you can switch to running. If you don’t have access to a cross-trainer, start with power walking. So no running. Just fast-paced walking. For example, work your way up to being able to walk 30 minutes at a brisk pace continuously. It’s low-impact, will improve your fitness, burn calories, and allow you at a later stage switch to running. See this on how to lose weight walking.

  3. Thanks for this workout plan..I’m 187 love handles, thunder thighs and belly..quited smoking before a month..going to start this workout in a positive approach :)…

    • Hi JC,
      So glad to hear you’ve stopped smoking! That’s great! Take your time with the running plan, listen to your body as you work through it. Maybe you’ll finish it faster, maybe it’ll take a little longer. The goal is to fall in love with running. If you love running, you’re guaranteed to do it regularly and often – and for life. And with it you’ll lose the weight, keep the weight off permanently, get fit and stay fit. All because you love to run! You’ll also probably find that you’ll crave heathier foods at some point. Don’t ignore that feeling! Seize it!
      Good luck! And let us know how you get on!

  4. Thank you so much for your program! I ran 20 minutes continuously today for the first time. It felt great! It probably took me 18 weeks as opposed to 10, but i got there and I can’t thank you enough for this simple program. I’m now going to work towards 30 mins of continuous running. Thanks again 🙂

  5. Hi! I have been going to a crossfit gym 4 times a week and have a BMI of 21, am 5’6” with 17.5% body fat at 133 pounds. However, I used to be a BMI of 19 or 20 and weigh 125….I like that my thighs are shaping up more with the workouts at crossfit, however, I have gained 8 pounds, my thighs are getting really big (for me), and yet I don’t feel like the fat is coming off so now my pants don’t fit. I hate running, but I started today with the beginner’s running plan and am excited to try it. Do you think I should go to this crossfit gym 3x per week, run the other 3 days for 20 minutes and then rest one day? We do a ton of deadlifts, squatting, rowing, lunges, etc. that bulk the thigh and I read the post on how to slim muscular thighs as I’m definitely a mesomorph and am thinking this cardio plan may help? But some places on your site say 20-30 minutes is good other places say 40-60 is good, which is it? and how many times a week is good? Thank you! Amazing amazing amazing wonderful helpful inspiring site!

  6. Hey! I just finished my first day today and I have some questions.
    What if i’m interested in running 7 days a week, would that be wise or should i not do it no matter how pumped I am?
    I’m not technically ‘out of shape’, but i’m not in the best of shape either.

    Also, would this help with weight loss? I’m interested in being overall physically fit but also hopefully shed some pounds along the way. 8)

  7. Hi ! I need some help and I hope you answer this. I really want to loose weight and burn fat, especially on my thighs. Is this a good one for burning thigh fat or does it build muscles? And how should I do if I want to work my butt because if I do squats and lunges it will affect my thighs and it will build muscles. How should I do? Should I just run or do these intervals ? Thankful for any answer.

    • Hi, there is no specific pace that you should set the treadmill at. It varies from person to person. It’s more about what feels comfortable for you. So run at a pace that allows you to run for the prescribed time and then recover during the walk period. Basically you’re looking to run at a moderate pace (about 60 – 70% maximum heart rate). It’s not so much about speed as about how you feel. You should be able to finish your running workout feeling challenged, but not completely exhausted. Good luck! Keep us posted on your progress! I hope you’ll love running as much as we do! 🙂

  8. Hey guys, good luck to everyone doing this beginner’s program. I’ve wanted to be a runner for some time now and I’m extremely happy that I came across this site. I think it’s the best that I’ve found, everything one could possibly want to know about fitness is here. Thank you guys so much for providing this tool for us! I need clarification on one thing, I know that we should have a rest day in between runs but wanted to know if I’m doing 5 days a week is it ok to take the same days off every week ex: run Mon, Tue, Thur, Fri, Sat, with Wed and Sun off or should I switch up my off days? Any suggestions would help, thanks!

  9. I just finished my 2nd week and I feel good. I was adjusting my app that times my walking and running and just realized that for my second week instead of 5 sets, I did 7 sets since I forgot to change it, oh well more exercise. My first day, I remember that when it got close to 1 min of running I already was tired and wanted to stop…and it was only the 1st set. By the end of the week I didn’t feel tired at all. This week was the same my lasts sets were the ones where I wanted to stop…the ones I accidently added on…but I kept with it even though I was a lot slower then when I started the sets. I’m a little afraid of week 3 but I’m going to try and report back.

  10. Sorry but one point of confusion: “All it requires on your part is the commitment to go out and run 3, preferably 5 times, a week. Depending on how often you are running, try to allow for a day of recovery between runs. For example, if you are running 4 times a week, avoid running 4 consecutive days.” If it’s preferrable to run 5 times a week, how do we implement that in a 7-day week?

    Thanks, I’m not trying to be a smart-alec, just trying to make sure I’m following the strategy correctly.

    • Hi Ann,
      Basically, all it means is try to avoid consecutive days of running where possible. As an example, if you’re running 5 days a week, rather than running Monday through to Friday, run Mon, Tue, Thur, Fri, Sat, with Wednesday and Sunday off. Hope that makes things a bit clearer!

  11. I’m new to running but I am active. I go on the elliptical for 60 minutes 4-5 times per week so now would it be easier to run on a track (which I’m assuming it would) but if I’m new to running is it ok to run in my development. There are hills but I’m thinking I would stick to the roads that are a little more flat. Just curious on what most beginners would do

  12. I am planning on starting this tomorrow as it is the first of the month! I have really wanted to start running and this sounds like a great easier, great way to start out. Im not much of a runner, never have been but my goal for this year at some time is to run at least a 2k run locally and finish. I will try and keep you updated on progress! Thanks very much!

  13. Alright. Its time for feedback. This program works. Its easy. It gives one time to adapt. There were times i refused to get up in the morning and there were times i thought i would not make it at all. Just a little self doubt. Stick to the program. It worked for me. It will work for anyone else.

  14. Thanks for posting this! Would you also recommend this “beginners” program for people resuming activities after injury? I just had my torn ACL repaired and I’m itching to get back to running so I’m praying my PT will approve of doing something regimented like this once I’m cleared to run! If anyone’s in the same boat comment and let me know what ya think

  15. I just started the 10 week beginners running program. Yesterday was day 1 and I am so proud that I was able to do it. It was not easy, but I was able to get through it. I am 50-years-old and have wanted to run for quite some time. I would like to do a marathon at some point in my life. I will keep you posted on my progress.

  16. I recently have lost 10lbs so far in my weight loss journey and was looking for a way to build my stamina plus I needed something to help me bust this plateau! lol I’ve only got 15 lbs to go! I’m starting this today! Why wait?!!! Thanks so much! I’ll check in weekly!

  17. I want to participate in a 5K this May 4. My plan is to start this today (seeing as how I have 7 weeks until the run). My question is, if I start this and follow it to the ‘t’ along with adjusting my run/walk based on how I see my body performing, do u think I will be prepared to run the 5K?? I don’t care how long it takes me to finish the 5K, just as long as I finish the run without stopping to walk. I’m 35 years old and about 20 lbs over my ideal weight.

  18. Hi, I just wanted to say thank you for posting this!! I found this website through pintrest and it is exactly what my weight loss plan needed! I have an athletic build so it’s pretty easy for me to adapt to a workout, even though I haven’t worked out in years. I just recently got motavated to loose the weight and get fit, and now I am really excited! This running plan along with the Podrunner app on my ipod will get me through this. 🙂

    thanks agian!

    • Hey Tracy,
      Running in the same spot will help improve your cardiovascular fitness and will burn calories, but it isn’t really the same as running as you can’t “run” like you would outdoors. Your stride length would be much shorter because you’re remaining in the same place or are confined to a small space. Basically you’re not able to stretch your legs out in front of you as you would when you’re running. But start small – start with indoor exercises and as you get more confident, go outside for 5 or even 10 minutes at a time with a family member for support. You don’t have to do 30 minutes. Take it slowly and your confidence will grow! Good luck with everything! 😉

  19. Hi,

    I am looking to adopt this plan you’ve created above, I used to go to a personal trainer and lost 30 inches but had to stop due to an ENT operation. I went to sign up to go back and his prices are just far too expensive now. I am looking to take up running as my partner loves it too and it would be a great thing to do together (He runs 2 miles four times a week) but I dont want to slow him down. I am overweight, so do you think it is best to try this plan or try doing each cycle over 2 weeks? so 1 min run then 2 min walk(X7) for two weeks or should I just try doing it in one week?

    I took part in a 5k last year and power walked the entire race, but this year I am hoping to run majority if not all of it.

    many thanks.

  20. ,Hi, just read the program, I am 59 over weight , out of shape, one bad knee, but I am going to give this program a try. I have always wanted to be a runner, but was afraid to start. any suggestions as to how to run on a treadmill, it just feels very akward. Its been very icey and cold, as soon as the weather breaks, I will be outside. Thanks again for any suggestions

  21. Starting this beginner program. I like the baby steps, I dread running as its really outside my comefort zone. Reading the comments is really inspiring. I have marked off the 10 weeks on my calendar, and hope to be encouraging someone else in the next two months.

    • Hey Jared,
      Yes! I really hope you’ll love it! Remember that it’s a guide. So if you need to adapt it to your needs, by all means do so. For example, some weeks you may want to skip a week, other weeks you may want to repeat a week. Listen to your body. Good luck! I look forward to hearing your success story in a couple months! 🙂

  22. I’ve decided to give this running program a try. I’ll be doing it every second day for the time being, as I do other exercise as well; I’ve always wanted to get into running though. I’m so excited, I just did my first day of this.

  23. thank you so much for this, i suck at general running and exercise, but would like to do it more often in order to lose weight. i’m currently on 3 min run 2 min walk and suprised at how easy and fun i find it! thank you so much 🙂

  24. Hello, I am an avid cyclist, but with winter fast approaching I wanted to change to running bc Id rather be out in the cold for an hour running than 3 to 4 hrs cycling. I started yesterday and ran a little over a mile w/o stopping and wondered if the walk/run was necessary for someone already in shape but not used to running specifically. My lungs could handle it but my legs felt like lead. Its been a few weeks since I quit cycling 80+ miles a week so I have lost some of my leg power, or since running is different they felt like that bc running is high impact and cycling is not. Any suggestions where someone like me should start? Thanks! Jill

    • Hi Jill!
      Try this fast-track running plan for people who are already fit, but beginner runners. Cardiovascularly you’re fit, but it takes time to become more efficient in terms of your running gait and for your leg muscles/ joints to adapt, strengthen and get used to the high impact of running. That’s why a run/ walk plan can help, it gives your body time to adapt and reduces the risk of injury. By all means, if you find some weeks too easy, skip ahead. But remember not only to take your cardiovascular system into consideration but your legs also. Hope this helps!

  25. hi there, i just found this today and i have been walking for 20 min and only able to run for one min but i wasnt doing it this way, also was on the brink of giving it up as a bad joke. i am going to give this a try and cross fingers, my plan is to loose weight but also gain some confidence in myself i will keep you updated 🙂

    • Hi Megan,
      I’m glad you’re not going to give up! I really hope this helps you get into running. And remember, this running plan is just a guide. Some weeks you may find it harder, some easier. Just repeat a week or skip ahead. If you make your main goal to be a runner, you’ll lose weight, because you’ll keep it up. If you make your main goal weight loss, the whole process becomes harder, because you (understandably) want to lose weight fast and you’re more likely to get frustrated and give up (it’s why most people fail with diets or exercise geared just at weight loss). So your mindset sounds good to me, get into running, feel fit, strong and confident and your body will change all by itself. Just remember to watch portion sizes and learn the calorie contents of the foods you eat regularly, so you can keep an eye on your calorie intake. Good luck! Looking forward to hearing how it goes! 🙂

  26. Hi there. I’m 20 and I’ve been overweight (in all honesty, medically obese) for a large portion of my life–though I carry it decently well. I’ve had knee problems, and my patella will dislocate on occasion. Is running still a good option for me, or should I try to lose some weight before giving running a shot? I’m a bit over 200 pounds… 🙁

    • Hi Ally, you could start by walking first to lose weight. Also the elliptical machine allows for a challenging workout and is a great alternative to running. But the elliptical machine, unlike running, is low impact. An extra benefit is that it also feels easier than running and you can workout your upper and lower body on the elliptical. Running is high impact and stressful on the joints, which is why it’s particularly important to start running slowly and build up gradually. Definitely get advice from your healthcare professional before starting a new exercise plan and discuss with him/ her your thoughts about running. They’ll be super happy to help and support you on your fitness journey. Good luck! 🙂

  27. Hello! My husband and I are going to start this program tomorrow! I am overweight and hopping to lose some weight with starting this. My husband just wants to tone things up…men… 🙂 I am hoping this helps, I have tried every other diet and i am afraid i am like my mom, who lost 100 pounds by eating right and just running! so here it goes!!

    Thank you!!

    • You’re welcome! I’m sure you can do it! Your mother is great motivation and you have support from your husband. You sound as though you’ll be fine! Good luck & have fun! 🙂 Let me know how it goes.

  28. I love fitness. I am more into youga and I have done 10 min trainer. I dream of running and enjoying it. I did not know how I would start to be successful at running. This is great information! I am going to start tomorrow! I want to be cardio fit and I want to slim my thighs and lift that butt! Running is going to be my new thing!!!

  29. i was just wondering if this is running/sprinting or jogging because i jog everyday for ten minutes so will it much harder to run? this looks like a great programme and i can’t wait to start tomorrow. i am in France the moment and it is 29 degrees so will it be much easier when i return home to Ireland ?

  30. I am going to TRY this. I am NOT a runner, much more of a jogging gal, but I am willing to try. I am an EMT and busy as heck, so I am hoping to try to do this a couple times a week. thanks!

  31. Hi Im 42 and so out of shape the only running I do is after my 3yr old son. I would love to start this program but scared and dont now were to start I have a treadmill would it be okay to start there?

  32. Hi, I have a few questions… am not a runner, (but have always wanted to be) so every once in a while I try, I find that between the water. the Ipod, the phone, I always feel overwhelmed with everything I am carrying. but fill I need it all….Just wondering any suggestions on how to hold it all together?
    How are these runners keeping time? Just estimations?
    Is the 20 min not including 5-to10 min before and afters? So in reality we need to have about 30 to 40 minutes to do this correct? Thanks so much and looking forward to trying this out?

    • Hi Mandy, it sounds as though a running waist pack would suit your needs. You can put your key and phone in there. For the iPod an iPod armband would be ideal and as for the water you can get a runner’s water bottle that is shaped like an oval water bottle with a hole in it. 🙂
      There are quite a few interval training apps you can download to help keep time.
      The running program doesn’t include warm-up, so be sure to include a warm-up and cool-down!

  33. Hi! This plan looks great! I’ve been trying to get started running and I’ve just been too afraid that it will be too hard. This plan looks so manageable! Question….I’m going to be running on a treadmill, around what speed should I be running at? I don’t want it to be too strenuous so that I die off at the end. Thanks!

  34. Hey, I’ve been needing to get in shape for a while now and stumbled across your running program 😀 however, a few years ago, a ligament injury in my knee means that I have been advised against running. Would cycling at a steady pace on a relatively flat route/at the gym or using the cross-trainer have similar effects to this program as neither of these cause me too much hassle?? I already swim and take part in 2-3 classes a week. Thanks 🙂

  35. Hey, I’ve finished week 1 on this and I’m progressing toward week 2, excellent program :D. On week 2 you seem to have done the math wrong though ( i think it’s supposed to be 2 minutes + 2 minutes times 5 = 20 minutes total). I’m not sure if you put that on purpose or if it was an accident.

  36. I have recently started running and love it so far. On the treadmil, I can run for about 6-7 minutes and then rest for a few minutes. I cant wait to try this though.

    My question is, I also do 2-3 classes at the gym a week (boot camp, spinning or strength classes). Would I be overdoing it if I ran on the days I wasn’t doing a class? I have a hard time giving up the strength classes but also don’t want to burn out by adding 4 days of running. Any suggestions would be great.

    • Hi Rachel,
      That’s great! Running in addition to your taking 2-3 classes a week is fine. Just make sure you take a day off to allow for recovery. Above all, listen to your body. Everyone is different and only you know how tired or energized you feel. You can always start with 3 days running and increase that to 4 days as you find it easier. Be flexible and plan your workouts around how you feel. Have fun running! Let me know how you get on with the program!

  37. OK, I’m a middle aged out of shape woman who’s been walking sporadically for several weeks, (never been a runner), but I’m inspired to try this!

  38. Hi, I have recently purchased a treadmill and am wondering if you should run at any kind of incline to simulated road running? Or just flat? I was told to put the machine on 2% is that correct?


    • Hi Mel,
      Lucky you! It’s good to set the treadmill to some sort of incline – 1% incline should be enough. Running at 0% is tantamount to running downhill, because the treadmill belt is propelling you forward and there is no wind resistance, as there would be if you were running outdoors. However, a 1% incline will compensate for the lack of wind resistance and the propelling belt, and make running on the treadmill more closely simulate an running outside. Have fun!

  39. I’ve just started out on this programme and it’s brilliant. I’m doing it every other day with other forms of exercise on the other days (jump rope or yoga) and after a week I’m already noticing a difference in my fitness levels. I can’t wait to see how I feel at the end of it!

    Thanks for this 🙂

  40. I can’t wait to begin this workout. I want to run my first 5k in the next 3 to 4 months and I am embarrassed that running just a mile makes me feel exhausted. Will this program help me achieve my goal?

    • Kara,
      I started doing this program in February. I began with every other day, but soon found myself going every day. I just got back on after a week off for a small surgical procedure and found that I was a little sluggish, but I can tell you that I feel so much better while doing it…and I’m a girl who hasn’t run since she was in grade school.
      Good luck I hope it works out for you! My goal is to run a 5K sometime this year!

  41. 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 only get better physically but mentally also, 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!

    • Hi Ashley,

      Wow. Thanks! Its great to get feedback like that. 🙂 I’m so glad it’s working for you. Running is such a great way to get fit and it’s so liberating. Humans were just meant to run – no equipment needed. Like you said, I think that most of us try to rush it and end up with injuries or feeling disappointed because we tried to do too much too quickly. Good luck for your 5K. And thanks again!

  42. I just started today and I thought I would do every other day. Though I have absolutely no experience with running so I don’t know if that is the correct way to do it or not.

    • Hi Molly,
      3 times week, or every other day is very good to start with. After that just listen to your body. If you feel comfortable you can add a fourth or fifth workout depending on how you’re feeling and how fast you recover after your runs.

      • So I started with every other day, and within two weeks I was doing it nearly every day. In the last three weeks I’ve only missed 2 days. It really is a good feeling. This week I am on the 6 minute run and 90 second walk cycle.
        What I like most about this is it gave me a realistic starting point. I think if I had tried to run on my own I would have been disgusted with myself when I couldn’t even run for three minutes and I would have given up. This was so totally manageable. The first day of the new week I still feel like I’m going to die but I manage to complete it and the next day is so much better!
        Thanks so much for posting this. It really has changed my life…I’ll let you knwo how I’m doign when I am finished with my ten weeks!

  43. are you guys running everyday or like everyother day or what? i have heard it’s not healthy to run everyday so im trying to figure out how this program works…i’d love to join in. i started “week one” on sunday and did it again tuesday and had planned to do it thurs and saturday so would i start week two on monday???

    • I run three times a week, but before I used to run everyday. I didn’t change because it was bad for my body (it was actually pretty good), but because it was too hard and it made me want to stop running. So if you’re a beginner, you don’t want to run everyday, it would be depressing. But continue what you have started, it’s great! I hope you can continue like that, and don’t give up!

  44. I am on week 3 of this program. I just “graduated” to the 2 min run/ 2 min walk phase. The more I run, the easier it gets! When I used the treadmill at the gym I would count the minutes and talk myself out of doing anything longer than 20 – 30 minutes. Now I find myself surprised (and often disappointed) that my workout is over!

  45. I just finished my first week, I feel embarrassingly out of shape for an active 22 year old but I’m so excited to put the old me in the past and come out of this with a major confidence boost. I can’t wait to run 20 minutes continuously & become a life time runner!


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