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Running: 30-Day Quick Start Guide for Beginners - Your First Day

Learn to Run Continuously for 20 Minutes


Updated December 17, 2009

Getting started with a running habit can feel overwhelming to a new runner. Instead of starting your running habit blindly, this 30-Day Quick Start Guide can direct you through your first month of running. Here are your first steps for preparing to get started, as well as instructions for your very first run.

1. Get Medical Clearance: If you've been sedentary for more than a year, have any injuries, illnesses or conditions, or are taking any medications, schedule an appointment with your doctor to get checked out and make sure it's OK for you to run.

2. Get the Right Running Shoes: Choosing the right running shoes is one of the most important decisions you'll make as a runner, especially if you're just getting started. Go to a speciality running shop so the experts can determine your foot type and recommend the right shoes for you.

3. Learn About Safety Precautions: Find out how to stay safe when running outside and find out where you should run. Learn about how to be prepared for running in hot or cold weather.

4. Your First Run: After a 5-10 minute warm-up with a brisk walk (you should start all workouts with a warm-up), begin your run/walk intervals. Run at an easy pace for 1 minute, then walk for 5 minutes. Repeat that sequence 3 times.

For the walk portions, make sure you're not taking a leisurely stroll. You should pump your arms, so that your heart rate stays elevated. That way, you'll still be getting a good cardiovascular workout and it will make the transition back to running easier.

Next: 30-Day Quick Start Guide for Beginners - Your First Week

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