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From Your Couch To 5K

What sounds more appealing: running a 5k or binge watching your favorite show on Netflix? Most people don't get enough exercise, and it is an enormous contributor to the health epidemic in America. If you want to commit to a healthy lifestyle, running is a great way to start! Running has many benefits for your body that go beyond losing weight. Exercise that increases your cardiovascular output helps your heart operate at its most efficient level. Doing so can drastically decrease your risk of heart failure. Regular exercise can also improve brain function. Runners’ brains are more capable of creating new neuronal connections, which are critical for completing daily tasks and learning new things. Running can also change your overall mood. When you run, your body releases endorphins. Endorphins can make you feel happier and more excited. So, after you pause Netflix, where do you get started?

It’s important to ease into the running process. Many people who take up running are easily discouraged because they try to reach a fast pace immediately. These people experience sore muscles and joints after the first run. Due to this pain, they feel dejected and are unlikely to further pursue running. A key aspect of learning to run long distance is to first walk and jog short lengths of time before increasing the running speed or the distance. The Couch to 5K guidelines were created with these ideas in mind. In just ten weeks, you can gradually work up to running a full 5K. The program centers on 20 to 30 minutes of moderate exercise three to four times a week for ten weeks.

Couch to 5K Exercise Schedule

Focus on completing the exercise at your own pace. Be sure to space out your exercise days to allow your muscles time to rest and recuperate. Do not worry about running fast or completing your goals quickly. You will find that your speed and endurance will increase as you build muscle and bone strength via the program. It’s easy to become discouraged, but practice makes perfect. We also recommend starting the program with a friend for support. Being held accountable by others can push you to reach your goals and be consistent with your work-out. We wish you the best of luck in completing your goals!

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