The ultimate beginner’s running program

Ready to tie up your runners and hit the pavement? Become a bona fide runner in four months with this ultimate beginner's running program

The ultimate beginner's running program

Source: Best Health Magazine, Summer 2010

This tried and tested four-month running schedule was developed by Jeremy Deere, past Canadian champion in the 5,000 metres and 10K distances, and owner of Strides Running Store in Calgary. It will help a non-runner gradually work up to running for 30 minutes straight. Plan to walk/run three times a week for up ‘to 45 minutes, with days off in between.

What pace is good for you? To burn fat and reap heart benefits, the American College of Sports Medicine recommends that you run at 60 to 80 percent of your maximum heart rate.

Running plan: Month 1

‘ Week 1: Run one minute; walk two minutes. Repeat 10 times. Gradually increase the time of your runs by one minute.

‘ By week 4: Run three minutes; walk one minute. Repeat 10 times.

Running plan: Month 2

‘ Week 5: Run three minutes; walk one minute. Repeat 10 times. Again, gradually increase running times.

‘ By week 8:
Run seven minutes; walk one minute. Repeat four times.

Running plan: Month 3

‘ Week 9: Run seven minutes; walk one minute. Repeat four times. Gradually increase running times.

‘ By week 12:
Run 11 minutes; walk one minute. Repeat three times.

Running plan: Month 4

‘ Week 13: Run 11 minutes; walk one minute. Repeat three times.

‘ By week 16:
Run 20 minutes; walk two minutes. Repeat twice.

Congratulations! You are now ready to run for half an hour without stopping!

This article was originally titled "A Beginner’s Guide to Running," in the Summer 2010 issue of Best Health. Subscribe today to get the full Best Health experience’and never miss an issue!’and make sure to check out what’s new in the latest issue of Best Health.

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