How To Become A Runner In Just 10 Weeks

If you’ve ever wondered how to become a runner, you’re not alone.

It’s very easy to look at runners and think they’re somehow different to us; that they were simply born super fit – this is definitely how I’ve felt in the past.

However, with a little work and determination, you too can become a runner.

One the problems some face, is that they believe they’re too overweight, or unfit to run.

But the fact is, learning how to become a runner doesn’t require that you are fit already. Apart from exceptional circumstances, anyone can participate.

The best part is that it’s completely free!

How to become a runner and why…

how to become a runner

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There are many benefits to starting and continuing a running plan, and most runners have different reasons why they do it.

Here are some of the general benefits:

  • Boosts energy and mood
  • Burns calories
  • Helps with weight loss
  • Tones and firms the body
  • Provides quiet thinking time
  • Can encourage better eating habits

Exercise also has the added benefit of helping prevent disease, such as heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and some cancers. So, why not give it a go?

Running Posture

Before you begin running it’s important to consider your running form. This is how you hold your body as you run.

For an effective run, try to:

  • Relax your upper body, pulling your abdominal muscles in tight.
  • Swing your arms back and forth, rather than across the body.
  • Push off from the balls of your feet.

Running Preparation

Stretching is a particularly important part of any exercise regimen.

It helps reduce the amount of lactic acid produced by the muscles, decreases the chance of injury, and keeps the body supple.

Get into the practice of stretching 5 or 6 times each week, for short periods at a time. Ideally, you should make it a part of your exercise routine.

After a few minutes warm up (like a slow jog, or walk), do your stretches and then begin your run. Perform some stretches then when you’re finished.

Stretching examples include:

  • Calf stretch
  • Hamstring stretch
  • Quadricep stretch
  • Tricep stretch
  • Yoga poses
  • Pilate’s poses

I’m a firm believer in taking lifestyle changes step by step, on a consistent basis until they become habit.

Previously, when I’ve tried to run, I simply didn’t have a plan. The result? My efforts faded out after a few weeks.

Recently, I was perusing a copy of the excellent magazine Notebook (September 2007), and came across a very simple, yet easy to follow beginner’s running program.

The key to any new exercise regimen is, that it starts small and increases gradually. This is exactly what this program does, and I’m really excited to get started myself.

Continue to discover the schedule for how to become a runner in 10 weeks…

Click the next page to read the 10 week plan on how to become a runner…
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About Melanie
Melanie is a Registered Dietitian who started Dietriffic in March 2007. Her aim is to make good health attainable and sustainable, without guilt and torture, making her approach popular with those who desire a level-headed approach to good health. Have you got your copy of her free book yet?


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{ 27 comments… read them below or add one }

Tom July 3, 2008 at 2:34 pm

This is a great article. Running is great exercise, and best of all it doesn’t cost anything. I really like how you set out the program to progressively increase the intensity. I very much believe the best way for long-term success when it comes to exercise or diet is to start very slow, and progressively work upwards.

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kathryn July 4, 2008 at 1:30 pm

Great guide Melanie. We often forget how simple these things can be. Hope the move is going well.

kathryn’s last blog post..Quicklinks

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Wendy July 4, 2008 at 1:34 pm

Huh, I’m in Perth and I just started a jogging program similar to this that I made up for myself last week. Your thoughts must be loud! ;-P

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Rebecca July 5, 2008 at 1:26 am

I’m also one of the ones that did the C25K program. Even I was astonished when I ran 30 minutes!!

Rebecca’s last blog post..Personal Revolution

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Suzannah July 6, 2008 at 8:55 am

Hey Melanie, I was literally just thinking that I wish I could take up something like jogging (I tried for about 6 months when I was younger and loved it), so I was surprised when I logged on here 5 minutes later and saw your post. Divine Intervention, I think! Anyway, I wondered your thoughts on jogging for people who are ‘bottom-heavy.’ I once told my doctor I’d taken it up, and he laughed at me. Do you think people of a certain shape should stick to walking because of the potential strain on the knees?

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Melanie July 8, 2008 at 4:45 am

Hi Tom,

You are so right, gradually increasing your activity is absolutely the best way to improve your strength and endurance.

Hi Kathryn,

Thank you! We’ve safely arrived back in Northern Ireland, it’s been great to see family and friends again.

Hi Wendy,

That’s funny isn’t it!?!

Rebecca,

That’s amazing! I’m sure it felt so wonderful! Are you still running?

Hi Suzannah,

It’s great to hear from you! I’ll email soon ;-)

To be honest I think it depends on the individual – some people seem to be more prone to joint problems than others. But, if you had no problems last time, then I can’t see it being an issue this time.

I think the best thing to do is give it a go for a few weeks, then reassess. Having good foot ware will also help, as they can absorb some of the impact on your joints.

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maria southerton September 8, 2010 at 9:37 pm

Thank you, these tips are going to be so usefull for me.

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leani atherton March 30, 2011 at 7:14 pm

these tips are benefiting to everyone.but,I am a jamaican athlete and I am way past those stage.So it would be nice if you could add something more challengeing that can help to get more speed. So I can start claking 10seconds apart from 11seconds.As a 15 year old boy,thank you!

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Melanie April 8, 2011 at 9:07 am

Leani,
You need to contact someone who specialises in the area of increasing speed for athletes.

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tammy April 13, 2011 at 8:23 pm

Hi Melanie,

Can you tell me how many times per week you recommend?

Thanks!

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Melanie April 13, 2011 at 8:36 pm

Hi Tammy,
If running is something new to you, I recommend starting with twice per week, then working your way up, if you want to run more than 2 times per week.

If you are doing it purely as a form of exercise, 2-3 times per week is ample, along with strength training exercises in between.

I hope that helps.

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Jennifer August 8, 2011 at 5:55 pm

I found and started this about 3 weeks ago. I’ve been pretty sedintary for the past few years so this is a challenge, but also do-able. I can already tell a big change in my cardiovascular health. Thanks!

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Melanie August 8, 2011 at 7:05 pm

Hi Jennifer,
I’m so pleased to read your comment, and so glad that you came back to share your experience using this plan. Thank you so much, and best wishes. Please let me know when you get to the end of your 10 weeks, I’d love to find out how you get on then, too.

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tammy August 30, 2011 at 1:55 pm

Hey Melanie,

I find that when I jog I am starting to get really sore at the top of my thigh where it meets the hip. What can I do to alleviate that? Thanks!!

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Melanie September 6, 2011 at 5:49 pm

Hi Tammy,
Does this happen with other exercise, that is lower in impact?

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Tammy October 4, 2011 at 5:18 pm

No, only while jogging. Thanks.

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Ahmed September 6, 2012 at 7:17 am

thanks alot ,well it’s great plan for running , appreciate it.
I have been aplying it for 8 weaks . and its really works.

I just have one question , what if I did this plan and become able to run for 5 minutes ?! , because it,s hard to run depending on your body

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Melanie September 19, 2012 at 2:14 pm

I’m sorry Ahmed, I don’t follow your question…

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Othman October 12, 2012 at 7:02 am

Hey Melanie,

Thanks a lot for this article , I’m really excited to start it.

for me , I can run 2min and walk for 2min almost 6times weakly , I know still beginner lol, but I like running so much .

however , I’m 17 and I want represent my country @RIO2016 , is this possible?!

I know it need a lot of work , but at least it’s my dream.

finally
should I have rest day?

looking forward to hear from you :D

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Melanie October 18, 2012 at 2:56 pm

Hi Othman,
Anything is possible, if you put your mind to it. I say go for it!!! :-) If you like running, that is half the battle already, so just keep at it. You have made a fantastic start already.

You should definitely have a rest day. This plan suggests repeats the program 2-3 times each week, while adding in other forms of exercise, too.

Perhaps a running coach would be good for you, if you are to realize your dreams?

Best wishes anyhow.

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