We can’t stress enough,  make sure you don’t overdo it when you start your running plan. Start with a realistic goal that you can accomplish in 10-weeks.

Running a 5k is a great goal for a new runner.  You should plan to build your running time and distance for 10-15 weeks before running your 5k.

Join a Local Club

Local running clubs/groups offer a variety of running activities. Runners are encouraged to join and be active in their local club.

Find a Running Club

Search here

Start with the Run Walk/Method

The best way to build your base of fitness, in order to progress to running, is to use the run/walk method. Start with walking and continue the activity until you can walk for 10 to 15 minutes minutes consistently. Then start to switch between running and walking.

This method allows you to run for a bit and then walk for a bit in intervals. You might only get in a few minutes of running the first few times, but don’t let that get you down. It takes time for your body to adapt to the new activity.

Plan to follow the run/walk pattern three to four days per week when you first start out.  Plan in a rest day or two to allow your body to recover from the activity. Building up to be able to run a 5k is a journey, not an immediate result. Be sure to warm-up by walking a little bit followed by your run segments. Plan in time for a cool down walk and do a little light stretching before you can call it quits for the day.

  Week #1

  • Warm-up: walk 5 minutes
  • Alternate: run 1 minute, walk 4 minutes for 30 minutes
  • Stretches and strength work
  • 3 days per week

  Week #2

  • Warm-up: walk 5 minutes.
  • Alternate: run 2 minutes, walk 3 minutes for 30 minutes
  • Stretches and strength work
  • 3 days per week

  Week #3

  • Warm-up: walk 5 minutes
  • Alternate: run 3 minutes, walk 2 minutes for 30 minutes
  • Stretches and Strength work
  • 4 days per week

  Week #4

  • Warm-up: walk 5 minutes
  • Alternate: run 4 min., walk 1 min. for 30 min.
  • Cool-down: walk 2–5 minutes
  • Stretches and strength work
  • 4 days per week

  Week #5

  • Warm-up: walk 5 minutes
  • Alternate: run 5 minutes, walk 1 minute for 30 minutes
  • Cool-down: walk 2–5 minutes
  • Stretches and strength work
  • 4 days per week

  Week #6

  • Warm-up: walk 5 minutes
  • Alternate: run 6 minutes, walk 2 minutes for 30 minutes
  • Cool-down: walk 2–5 minutes
  • Stretches and strength work
  • 5 days per week

  Week #7

  • Warm-up: walk 5 minutes
  • Alternate: run 7 minutes, walk 3 minutes for 30 minutes
  • Cool-down: walk 2–5 minutes
  • Stretches and strength work
  • 5 days per week

  Week #8

  • Warm-up: walk 5 minutes
  • Alternate: run 8 minutes, walk 2 minutes for 30 minutes
  • Cool-down: walk 2–5 minutes
  • Stretches and strength work
  • 5 days per week

  Week #9

  • Warm-up: walk 5 minutes
  • Alternate: run 9 minutes, walk 1 minute for 30 minutes
  • Cool-down: walk 2–5 minutes
  • Stretches and strength work
  • 5 days per week

  Week #10

  • Warm-up: walk 5 minutes
  • Run at talking pace (or 140–160 pulse) for 30 minutes
  • Cool-down: walk 2–5 minutes
  • Stretches and strength work
  • 5 days per week

By the end of week ten you’ll be running anywhere from 2 ½ to 3 ½ miles per day, 10 to 20 miles per week.  At the end of 10 weeks:

  • Continue with the daily workout as you did at week ten.
  • Gradually increase your distance/time of the daily run (no more than 10% increase per week)
  • Plan in core strength work (stomach, lower back, butt) and flexibility sessions.

Don’t forget to hydrate with WATER and nutrient-rich foods post-run. This will assist in post-workout recovery.  Avoid sugary energy drinks, as they can be high in sodium and calories.