Couch Potato to 5K RunnersA couch potato to 5K program is the perfect way for anyone to start running, even if they have never tried before.  Several free programs exist that can help you progress from being a couch potato to 5K (or any other distance you wish to accomplish).  In fact, some people enjoy running so much after they complete their first 5K, they go on to eventually complete marathons!  This of course takes many months of work, so don’t get too nervous by that thought – just think about the fact that in just a few short weeks you can be competing in your first race.

The gold standard, and original program that started it all is by Cool Running.  Their Couch to 5K program will have you racing in a 5k within just 9 weeks.  (With that said, we also think our Couch to 5K program is pretty great too!) The program works by having you alternate running with walking.  As the weeks go by, you slowly add more running, until you reach the 5K distance.  This gradual progression allows your body to adjust to the strain running might put on it.


One thing to keep in mind is that this program is not about having you complete the race quickly – it’s simply about having you run for 30-40 minutes at a pace that is comfortable to you.  The benefit to this is even if you feel you are slow, that’s no problem.  The couch potato to 5K programs work perfectly whether you can run a mile in six minutes, or in fifteen.


Again, it can’t be stressed enough that anyone can do this – even if you have never run a step in your life. Just follow along with the program consistently, and don’t overdo it, and before you know it, you’ll forget there was a day when you couldn’t run!


Have you used a couch to 5k program to lead you to success that we don’t list here? Have you successfully completed your first 5K recently? Let us know!

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