I had a friend tell me that she thought Couch Potato to 5k was way to confusing and she found herself not finishing and asked me to give her a simplified version. She liked this version and so I thought I would share with you.
All you need is a watch with a timer, some good running shoes, a good running path (one where you do not have to stop for traffic, as when you are beginning this, it will be really irritating to run in place while waiting on the light or cars to pass), motivation and some determination.
With all of these, do a 5 min brisk warm up walk and a 5 min cool down walk and stretch really well after you run!!! Here are some sample stretches to choose from.
You can run as many days as you want or take a rest day (or do another exercise on those days) and run every other day. I would run AT least 3 times a week, if not more. At any point you begin a week and just have to walk when you are supposed to run, repeat the previous week a couple more times, until you feel you are ready to move on. Listen to your body. Everyone is different. When I got into the longer runs, I had to repeat weeks, in order to move up. Also as extra motivation, sign up (and pay) 0 for a 5k, that is 6 months out. That way you have an end goal to keep you focused.
Running plan: Month 1
Week 1: Run 1 minute; walk 2 minutes. Repeat 10 times.
Week 2: Run 2 minutes; walk 2 minutes. Repeat 9 times.
Week 3: Run 2 minutes; walk 1 minute. Repeat 9 times.
Week 4: Run 3 minutes; walk 1 minute. Repeat 8 times.
Running plan: Month 2
Week 5: Run 4 minutes; walk 1 minute. Repeat 7 times.
Week 6: Run 5 minutes; walk 1 minute. Repeat 6 times.
Week 7: Run 6 minutes; walk 1 minute. Repeat 5 times.
Week 8: Run 7 minutes; walk 1 minute. Repeat 4 times
Running plan: Month 3
Week 9: Run 8 minutes; walk 1 minute. Repeat 4 times.
Week 10: Run 9 minutes; walk 1 minute. Repeats 3 times.
Week 11: Run 10 minutes; walk 1 minute. Repeat 3 times.
Week 12: Run 12 minutes; walk 1 minute. Repeat 3 times.
Running plan: Month 4
Week 13: Run 15 minutes; walk 1 minute. Repeat 3 times.
Week 14: Run 18 minutes; walk 2 minutes. Repeat 2 times.
Week 15: Run 20 minutes; walk 2 minutes. Repeat 2 times.
Week 16: Run 30 minutes.
Congrats, you did it, now you can run your full 30 mins with no breaks! Now you can work on your speed and try to increase how fast you run the same distance. You can do this. You have Trained for 4 months and are now fully prepared to run a 5k in under 30 mins! Plus once you are at the run, everyone around you will motivate you to keep running!
Good luck, stay safe and stretch!!!
Have a very fit day!