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ZORBS13 SparkPoints: (199,795)
Fitness Minutes: (195,158)
Posts: 15,862
3/7/13 4:47 A

I ran 3 days a week for the first year and a half or so I ran. During that time, I trained for a half, a 30K and a marathon. I briefly went up to 4 days, and then cut it back to 3 again when I got pregnant.

When I run 5 days a week, I try to ST full body twice a week, so depending on my schedule, I'll have 0-2 rest days. On average I manage 1 ST session (which is fine for marathon training, which I am in the thick of at the moment), the 5 days of running, and 1 rest day.

MOTIVATED@LAST Posts: 15,457
3/7/13 12:32 A

The impact of running is hard on the body, especially for those starting out. I agree with the recommendation to keep running to just 3 days per week until you have 6 months of running under your belt. Keeping running to 3 days allows your leg muscles and tendons to rest and get stronger, ultimately helping your longer term performance and reducing your risk of injury.

It is fine to do low impact cardio on running rest days.

Building long term healthy habits is essential to losing weight and keeping it off. And I think it is hard to build long term healthy eating habits if you are constantly adjusting what you eat depending on how much exercise you do on a particular day. In coming up with an intake recommendation, Spark averages your activity levels over the week. The body has enough reserves to comfortable handle the dips and peaks of a typical exercise program.

While it is true that for major exercise sessions (eg. half marathon training, people who jump on a bike and ride 40+ miles on a weekend, etc) where you may burn 1000+ calories in a single session, you may want to adjust your eating, it isn't necessary or even beneficial for something like running 5K.


DRAGONCHILDE SparkPoints: (61,458)
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Posts: 9,717
3/6/13 11:12 P

Most 5k training programs recommend only 3 days of running. You can build up to more days over time, but you have to let your musculoskeletal system catch up. :) I would say AT LEAST 2 days of rest... always at least a day between runs. You'll be able to run 4-5 days a week later.

LOVEMOUSE82 SparkPoints: (3,788)
Fitness Minutes: (2,976)
Posts: 349
3/6/13 10:06 P

Thank you thank you for the advice and info. I feel so much better. I was being really hard on myself for not running today but now that I think about it, it makes sense because for the past few days I feel I've been getting slower and slower or at least it's been harder. I guess I needed a rest day. I'm getting anxious about my first 5k in April so I didn't want to take a break but I suppose it's good I did. So, is 1-2 rest days a week about the normal/best pattern then?

ZORBS13 SparkPoints: (199,795)
Fitness Minutes: (195,158)
Posts: 15,862
3/6/13 9:58 P

I only run 5 days a week, 4 in the offseason.

SP_COACH_NANCY SparkPoints: (0)
Fitness Minutes: (112,042)
Posts: 46,222
3/6/13 9:53 P


As a new runner, it is best that you don't run every day. The body needs time to adapt and the time the body does this is when you are not running. This doesn't mean you can't do some other form of exercise, but you should not run daily. Over time that may change, but remember, "we are all an experiment of one." And yes, rest days are just as important as running itself.

As for eating, it's really up to you, but I generally keep my calories pretty steady across the board.

Take care!

Coach Nancy

LOVEMOUSE82 SparkPoints: (3,788)
Fitness Minutes: (2,976)
Posts: 349
3/6/13 9:30 P

So I'm still fairly new at running and was just wondering, do most runners go at least a little every day? I really try to but like tonight I was working till 8 pm, been busy since 5 this morning, you know how it goes sometimes.....

I guess I'm making a " guilt" post here because I'm honestly feeling bad about not working out today, especially since I was at the high end of my calorie range. Would it be better to make sure to eat less on the days I don't work out? i know ideally I would work out every day, and I really wanted to. This is actually the first day in awhile that I haven't ran at least a little. It's too dark now and I'm just exhausted from going at it since 5 this it normal for runners to have rest days? If so, do they adjust what they eat on those days.

All said and done, I guess today was not one of my better days as far as healthy choices. I'm a little sad. I'll try again tomorrow. :)

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