Fitness Articles

Running Workouts with Interval Training

Training Programs for Beginner, Intermediate, and Advanced Runners

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Advanced Interval Running Workout


An Explanation of Using the RPE Method to Measure Intensity
Rate of Perceived Exertion (RPE) may be the most versatile method to measure exercise intensity for all age groups. Using this method is simple, because all you have to do is estimate how hard you feel like you’re exerting yourself during exercise. RPE is a good measure of intensity because it is individualized—it’s based on your current fitness level and overall perception of exercise. The scale ranges from 1 to 10, allowing you to rate how you feel physically and mentally at a given intensity level.


An RPE between 5 and 7 is recommended for most adults. This means that at the height of your workout, you should feel you are working "somewhat hard" to "hard."
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About The Author

Jen Mueller Jen Mueller
Jen received her master's degree in health promotion and education from the University of Cincinnati. A mom and avid marathon runner, she is a certified personal trainer, certified health coach and advanced health & fitness specialist. See all of Jen's articles.

Member Comments

  • Trying to figure out all these times and speeds would drive me crazy, I would have to print it out and take it with me, then actually getting the right rate at the right time would be impossible. Can't figure out how you would do that outside. I have a fitbit but doing rates like that wouldn't show up until I was on the computer. Guess I will just wing it - 10/26/2014 10:21:27 AM
  • Maybe next time some interval training with incline changes? - 7/30/2014 3:21:31 PM
  • Intermediate sounds really doable and advanced sounds like quite a push. I'll have to try one and then the other. Can't wait to push myself with this! - 7/30/2014 3:20:54 PM
  • Sounds very worthwhile. Thanks - 7/26/2014 11:42:26 AM
  • Thanks for sharing these workouts. At the start of this month I began a run/walk interval training program that appears to share some similarities with these workouts and have enjoyed them. I appreciate having additional workout options available.

    Thanks again! - 6/28/2014 5:43:15 PM
  • SMORAN0505
    I am 60 years old. . This scares me a little, i will try this at the gym tonight. I did 60 minutes on the elliptical last night. - 5/13/2014 1:25:50 PM
  • --LENA--
    oh boy... i'm a beginner and i trained to jog on the treadmill 30 minutes at 3,37 mph. this is a really big step for me... this beginners training programm is way too hard for me! - 4/21/2014 9:35:26 AM
  • I've been running for about a month and this is a good one. I was able to complete it (though it was somewhat challenging) all the way through without stopping. I don't do it every time, but I try to do it at least once a week. - 1/21/2014 10:09:23 AM
  • Wow! Even the beginner program seems way too fast for me to run. There is no way my RPE would be that low at the recommended pace. - 1/21/2014 8:22:00 AM
  • What would be a good substitute for the numbers for really short people whose little legs can't possibly go 6.7? - 12/11/2013 12:15:16 AM
  • Helpful to see the intervals broken down. I am going to try something close to but not quite intermediate next week.

    One thing I'm confused by is the apparent distinction between jogging (up to and including 6.2 mph) and running (6.5 mph and up). Does this distinction actually exist? Believe me, when I'm going 5.5 mph, I'm running, and to me, 6.2 is a sprint! Personally, I think we're all runners, no matter how fast or how slow we go. - 11/2/2013 9:44:29 AM
  • CCLARK41809
    Pushing myself i finished the beginner workout today. It was great!..cant wait to work my way up to intermediate. - 10/31/2013 11:38:19 PM
  • CCLARK41809
    I enjoy running and this may be the challenge i was looking for. Thank you SP.. ! - 10/23/2013 5:56:41 PM
  • I just tried the Advanced and it was really tough. I made it through 30 minutes before I had to walk. Loved it though. It was hard to see the cheat sheet I printed from the site, so I made my own spreadsheet with bigger numbers so I could tell where I was in the sequence. Will definitely try to conquer this again. - 3/26/2013 5:08:01 PM
  • I have saved this for much later. I'm just about to complete my 5K jog and I thought I was doing ok at 4mph but after looking at this I am really feeling down. My heartrate is in the 170s at 30 mins of doing 4mph. I can't even imagining doing the beginner workout :( - 10/25/2012 3:03:49 AM
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