Best Weekly Running Plan | A Beginners Guide
Whether you’re just getting started or are hungry for more after completing your couch to 5k programme. Here are 6 useful tips to the best weekly running plan. Aiming to keep you running, injury free.
Best Weekly Running Plan | 6 Golden R’s
- Make sure you’re ready to go before each run. It’s key that your warm up is dynamic and specific to running. Getting your heart rate slightly raised will get you into your running rhythm more quickly and ultimately improve your performance. Check out our 7 Series Warm Up Drills on how to get ready to run.
- For beginners and recreational runners 3 times per week is enough to help you improve and adapt. There are 2 key points here. Firstly, no consecutive days running!! Always ensure you have a day off running between each session. You have a much higher risk of injuring yourself by running on consecutive days. Secondly, include variety in your runs. Ideally mix your runs between steady, long runs (equivalent to a running pace you can still just chat at), tempo runs (slightly quicker pace but shorter distances), or interval sessions (repetitions of quick, short, burst. For example 50 metre bursts 5-10 times. Playing another high, intensity sport such as football, tennis, netball, etc could also be classed as an interval session).
- Always incorporate 1-2 rest days. Your body needs time to adapt and heal before going again. These are essential!! Ensure you have 1-2 recovery days (for example a light walk/swim/cycle or even Yoga session). These days are needed to help flush out lactate in the body as well as recover from the micro-trauma in your muscles in order to allow the body to adapt. Essentially become fitter. Finally, 1-2 conditioning sessions per week will improve your running performance, making you more efficient and reduce your risk of injury. This can take many forms, for example, Pilates / Yoga / HIIT class / Circuit workout / Strength & Conditioning session / other Sport. For a an example of a running specific workout try out our 7 Series Running Strength video.
- Try to have a recovery day after your long run. When you have just pushed your body to it’s threshold, for example after your longest run, it’s highly likely you will be at your stiffest the next day or 2 due to muscle soreness. A light walk, swim or cycle will help you recover quicker at your stiffest.
- When increasing your mileage as part of a training plan use the 10% rule as a general guidance. Increasing your total weekly miles or Km’s by no more than 10% at a time. Or if your runs are a bit of a breeze you can try the Equilibrium rule. Increasing your weekly mileage by 20-30% but sticking at this level for 3-4 weeks before going again.
- At the end of the day listen your body. If you’re feeling fatigued, take another rest or recovery day. Or, if you’re feeling fitter than ever, try that second conditioning session instead of a recovery day. Not sure if you’re doing too much or causing more damage, read our guide on good pain vs bad pain here.
Best Weekly Running Plan Example
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