This six-week schedule, developed by the experts at Runner's World, is designed to provide beginners the endurance they need to go the 10K distance (6.2 miles). The plan features four days of easy running, two days of rest, and some very short doses of faster running and gentle pickups.
Ideally, you should do no exercise at all. But it's okay to go for a short easy run, or cross-train with a no-impact activity like stretching, yoga, or swimming.
2 miles easy 4 x 1-minute aerobic intervals 2 miles easy Start by running two miles at a comfortable pace that feels easy enough to carry on a conversation. For your aerobic intervals, push the pace a bit, but don't run all out. After each bout of fast running, jog slowly until you feel rested enough to speed up again. Finish with two easy miles.
4 miles easy 3 gentle pickups Maintain your easy, conversational pace for four miles. Then do three gentle pickups. Gradually increase your pace over 100 meters until you're running at 90 percent of all-out effort, and hold it there for 10 to 20 meters, then gradually decelerate. Walk in between the pickups to recover.
Maintain a comfortable, conversational pace.
Training logs can be great tools to track your progress and help prevent injuries. Write down details about the mileage you ran, how you felt while you were on the run, what the weather was like, and how you felt afterward. Be sure to include your race goals and the reasons you're training for a marathon. When you feel the urge to call it quits, pull out that log. Seeing all your plans--and all that you've already accomplished--can help get you out the door.
4 miles easy 3 gentle pickups Maintain your easy conversational pace for three miles. For pickups, gradually increase your pace over 100 meters until you're running at 90 percent of all-out effort, and hold it there for 10 to 20 meters, then gradually decelerate. Walk in between the pickups to recover.
Don't let boredom derail your training. Map out a new route or find a scenic trail so you feel refreshed. You can find a new route, or map your own, by going to our routefinder at runnersworld.com/routes.