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How to Start Running?

Couch - Walk – Run in just 9 weeks

I am an accidental runner and a bug that bit me 11 years ago. From a non athletic person to be able to run different distance and terrains has been a journey of self discovery. One thing that has stayed with me and will continue to is patience.

On weekly basis I receive messages, "how do I start running, how do a 10k Marathon?". While 10K is a run, Marathon is a distance of 42.2k and any distance beyond that is called an Ultra Marathon. That's something I always insist on educating first, after all distance running needs respect! Many newcomers to running become discouraged by the difficulty associated with the activity because they start too fast and push too hard. Their bodies push back and they end up resenting running.

I had an amazing opportunity at Cult in 2018 to kick start a new format - Outdoor running. The program I used isn’t just intended on getting ready for a race but designed to instill the love of running.

With little or no running background whatsoever, the Couch - Walk – Run will transform from couch potato to regular runner — in just two months. Although it worked with 80% of the members, I had to extent it by another week for a few more. Patience is the key!

Each session around 50 minutes, three times per week. Rest days between run days to allow body to recover. Recovery will only aid in your process to becoming a better runner.

Workout format - simple

Along with three days of Running, add two days of Strength and Conditioning classes and one day of Yoga. The seventh day of the week is REST.

Monday - Rest

Tuesday - Outdoor Run

Wednesday - Strength and Conditioning

Thursday - Outdoor Run

Friday - Yoga

Saturday - Outdoor Run

Sunday - Strength and Conditioning

Rest days

  • Rest days are critical. Having one between each week's runs will reduce chance of injury and also make stronger, better runner.

  • Resting allows joints to recover from what is a high-impact exercise, and running muscles to repair and strengthen.

  • Alternatively, doing Strength and Flexibility on your rest days.

Aches and pains

Some runners starting the programme experience calf pain or sore shins. Such aches can be caused by running on hard surfaces or by running in shoes that do not have enough foot and ankle support. Or something old shoes and the sole has worn out. Many a times new muscle groups are being used, so be ready for new sensations. Listening to your body, pain vs soreness is important.

Diet and Hydration

Never start a run empty stomach. A simple banana or 2 dates, 15 min before a run. Hydration post run is as important.

Emphasize on balanced diet and not on protein rich diet.

Gear and Shoes

One rule does not apply to all. I do this at individual level once the you have reached a level of comfort with me. (non-marking shoes for outdoor running or women not using the right sports bra)

Do you wish to give this sport a try? Message me to receive a FREE copy of the 9 Week plan.

Over one year, I had an opportunity to touch many lives, their first foot forward in the world of running. Many of them even today continue to run and that's consistency. That takes patience and discipline. Striking the balance between weight training, flexibility and nutrition, not to mention recovery.

One year celebration at Cult - Outdoor running with Shwetambari Shetty.


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