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want to start a running program

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Author: Message: Sort First Post on Top

Posts: 13,961
2/5/13 9:35 A

C25K might not require you to cover 3 miles in the initial weeks. But if you can't walk 3 miles, then you are NOT ready for running.

It takes a long time for leg muscles and tendons to adapt to the impact of running. Walking is a good intermediate step and starts the adaptation process. Someone who walks regularly is going to have an easier time of C25K than someone who has developed equal fitness through low impact activity such as cycling.

The 'Couch' part of C25K is a bit of a misnomer - but I still like the optimism built into the phrase.


SparkPoints: (24,856)
Fitness Minutes: (18,932)
Posts: 103
2/5/13 7:27 A

The Couch to 5k plan is the best. I don't think you have to be able to walk all three miles before you start the plan since the couch to 5k plan doesn't make you run/walk 3.1 miles in the first week or so.

Posts: 13,961
2/5/13 6:40 A

Running is hard on the body, and it takes a while for the body to adapt to the impact of running.

I'd recommend building up a solid walking base first (you should be able to comfortably walk 3 miles in an hour or less).

And I agree strongly with the recommendation of a Couch to 5K program as the best way to get into running. These programs work through progressively increasing intervals of running and walking, and not only gradually increase your fitness, but also give your leg muscles and tendons the time to adapt to the impact.


SparkPoints: (49,819)
Fitness Minutes: (24,989)
Posts: 818
2/4/13 4:08 P

I agree that the C25k program is an awesome way to go! This is the one I used:

Posts: 195
2/4/13 10:25 A

I really do like the Couch to 5k program. It has helped keep me going!

SparkPoints: (10,706)
Fitness Minutes: (6,923)
Posts: 112
2/4/13 10:21 A

I'm really bad at doing 'real' plans. So please don't take this as professional advice. There are many couch to 5k programs out there, but this is what I did to build up to 5k.
3xs per week
Week 1-walk 5k
Week 2-jog 1 minute, walk 4 minutes, repeat duration of the route
Week 3-jog 2 minutes, walk 3 minutes, repeat duration of the route
Week 4-jog 3 minutes, walk 3 minutes, repeat duration of the route
Week 5-jog 4 minutes, walk 2 minutes, repeat duration of the route
Week 6-jog 5 minutes, walk 1 minute, repeat duration of the route
Week 7-slow jog entire duration

SparkPoints: (25,836)
Fitness Minutes: (32,211)
Posts: 254
2/3/13 1:43 P

Hi Yunospie,

I don't have a set program I use but I'd recommend walking first, and then walking fast. Once you can walk fast for 45 minutes or an hour, I'd add in some interval jogging. My favorite way of doing this is looking ahead and saying, "well I can jog and make it as far as that mailbox". And then do it. When I reach the mailbox, I go back to walking briskly until I recover from the jog and then start looking for the telephone pole, tree, or curb that I will run to next. It makes it fun and it keeps it flexible. Eventually you'll be able to run further and before you know it, you'll be doing the 3k. I would suggest investing in some good running shoes and keep an exercise log to track your progress. Also you might want to check in with your physician or at least casually mention your goal the next time you see him or her. Good luck!

Posts: 55,245
2/3/13 1:37 P

You might consider training for a 5k (whether you run all of it or walk some) and sign up for a race to complete at the end of your training. Here's a link to SparkPeople's 5k training plans:

Good luck!

Coach Jen

Posts: 1
2/3/13 11:51 A


i want to start running and gradually build up to a 3k. anyone have a program they would like to share? i have to admit that i don't like to run but want to learn to "love" it :) i know that running will improve my health and hopefully reduce my body fat. a friend of mine recommended running because it helped her tone up. i hope that running will help me "lean out" and improve my endurance. any advice would be appreciated, thank you.

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