Healthy Living

MBB Couch To 5k Running Plan To Help You Get In Shape

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Starting a new workout plan, or choosing to be more physically active is a great decision that can come with a ton of benefits.

But as a beginner, starting something like this can often seem overwhelming, or even somewhat intimidating for newbies.

Well not to worry. With a well-drawn out plan, achieving your fitness goals will be way easier than you think.

The benefits associated with regular physical aerobic activities like running and cycling are too obvious to ignore.

If you’re a complete beginner to running/jogging, and you’d like to adopt this healthy habit, either for its benefits, or simply as a challenge to yourself, then this couch to 5k program is for you.

In this post, you’ll discover what couch to 5k is, how it works, it’s benefits, how to do it, as well as a drawn-out plan to help you along the way.

This simple program will have you going from absolutely sedentary, to being able to run a 5k in a matter of weeks. Let’s get right into it.

What Is Couch To 5k

What Is Couch To 5k

The couch to 5k, also known as C25K is a simple running plan, primarily aimed at newbies, to get into the habit of running/jogging.

It’s aimed at getting people from being absolutely sedentary to being able to run 5 kilometers (hence the name). In miles, that’s about 3.1 miles.

Rather than going in all at once, the C25K takes you through a gradual process, that is easier to follow, where you make gradual improvements per day, which eventually add up to being able to run 5km.

It’s the perfect thing for beginners, because it emphasizes things like rest days to help you recover, and also helps you progress gradually, so you don’t end up putting unnecessary excessive stress on your body all at once.

Also See: Amazing 30-Minute Treadmill Workouts To Help You Burn Fat

How Does It Work

Like I explained, it starts off with little physical activity, and gradually works its way up to being able to easily run 5km.

During the first few days of C25K, you’ll start by either doing brisk walks, or a mix of walks and runs. As time progresses, you’ll begin to do less, walks, and more runs, till you’re finally able to run easily.

In terms of lengths of the program, it ranges. Some C25K programs are done in a 6-week period, while others are done in 8 weeks, or more.

I understand that different people start from different starting points. That’s why the MBB C25K plan features both a 6-week, an 8-week and 10-week running schedule, so you can choose whichever one you’re most comfortable with.

Benefits Of The C25K

Wondering what you could gain from this running plan? Here are a couple of benefits to consider.

1) Can Be Helpful For Weight Loss/Getting In Shape

One of the major reasons people embark on the couch to 5k program, is to either lose weight, or get in a better shape.

It’s no news that when it comes to weight loss, or getting fit, exercise can, and has proven to be a rather effective tool. That being said, I’d also like to point out that exercise does not, and should not take the place of a healthy diet.  

If you want to see positive results, adopting a good, balanced and well-structured diet, which is tailored to your needs and goals, is probably the best way to start.

A good exercise plan, like the C25K can serve as a great addition to your diet, which can help you eventually achieve your goals of weight loss or getting in shape.

Also See: 30-Day Squat Challenge For Stronger Better Glutes

2) A Great Way To Challenge Yourself

Challenges can serve as a great opportunity for us to grow as individuals. And if you’re looking for a healthy way to challenge yourself to reach greater heights, then the couch to 5k plan is a wonderful place to start.

Having to commit to a running plan like this, for the duration it’s intended, can help you build patience, and develop other skills like dedication and perseverance.

Plus, the feeling you’ll get when you’re done is next to none. This is one challenge you’ll certainly be thanking yourself for afterwards.

Also See: 30-Day Ab Challenge For A Perfect Flat Belly

3) Other Benefits Associated With Physical Activity

It’s also no news, that regular physical activity, especially aerobic activities like cycling, running and swimming, come with a lot of interesting health benefits.

And the benefits extend far beyond just weight loss. From physical things, like helping to reduce blood pressure and cholesterol, to mental benefits like increased mental clarity, and improved mood.

Adopting a healthy exercise routine doesn’t just improve your body. It also improves your mind too.

Equipment You’ll Need

As with every other type of exercise, you need to make sure you have the right equipment for the job, as that will make the whole process way easier, and more effective.

So what exactly do you need to have for this couch to 5k program? Well, not much. Not more than you’ll actually need during your average running sesh.

Things like;

1) Good Running Shoes

I’m certainly no expert when it comes to the choice of running shoes, but I do admit you need some good quality ones, if you want to get the best out of your runs.

Shoes that are comfortable, but at the same time, well-designed, to help prevent unnecessary injuries, especially if you’re running on a hard terrain.

Like I said, I’m certainly no expert in this field. But I know someone who is. Here’s an in-depth guide from Runner’s Need, on how to choose the best running shoes for your specific situation.

Also See: 10 Best Home Workouts That Burn The Most Calories

2) Good Running Clothes

Just like shoes, clothes are the next most important thing to consider when starting a program like this.

For starters, you want to make sure you’re wearing something comfortable, and something that lets you move around rather freely.

Also, depending on the weather, you may want to dress extra light (if you’re doing this during the summer) or pad up a little bit (if you’re doing this during the colder months)

Here’s a visual guide from FIX, which shows you the best types of running clothes to wear, depending on the weather outside.

3) Water

Hydration is another important part of your run. As someone who has had to run a few times while dehydrated, I can tell you it is certainly NOT fun.

Staying properly hydrated during your run will help reduce unnecessary fatigue, reduce risk of injury and help you achieve more overall.

A simple water bottle should do. But if you also want to invest in a higher quality bottle that can help keep your water at a certain temperature or something, then that’s also a great idea.

Also See: 30 Healthy Daily Habits For Weight Loss

Other Possibly Useful Equipment

1) Sunscreen – If you’re running/walking outside, odds are, you’ll be there for a while. Keeping your skin protected is important in such situations

2) Sport watch – You don’t want to have to be pulling out your phone every 5 seconds to check the time or check your progress. A good stop watch can do that for you, while you focus on the task at hand

3) Phone holder – If your choice of running gear doesn’t come with a pocket, you can also choose to carry your phone with a phone holder, or armband carrier

4) Headphones – Because music makes everything easier, and better

MBB Couch to 5k Plans

This C25K plan features a 6-week, 8-week, and 10-week routine, so feel free to choose the one you’re most comfortable with.

The workouts are carried out 3 days in a week, and they are all completed between 20 -35 minutes

6-Week Plan

MBB Couch to 5K 6 week Plan

Week 1

  • Day 1 – Run 1 minute, walk 2 minutes (Repeat 5 times)
  • Day 3 – Run 1 minute, walk 2 minutes (Repeat 6 times)
  • Day 5 – Run 1 minute, walk 2 minutes (Repeat 7 times)

Week 2

  • Day 1 – Run 2 minutes, walk 2 minutes (Repeat 6 times)
  • Day 3 – Run 2 minutes, walk 2 minutes (Repeat 6 times)
  • Day 5 – Run 3 minutes, walk 2 minutes (Repeat 5 times)

Week 3

  • Day 1 – Run 4 minutes, walk 1.5 minutes (Repeat 4 times)
  • Day 3 – Run 5 minutes, walk 1.5 minutes (Repeat 4 times)
  • Day 5 – Run 7 minute, walk 1.5 minutes (Repeat 4 times)

Week 4

  • Day 1 – Run 8 minutes, walk 2 minutes (Repeat 3 times)
  • Day 3 – Run 10 minutes, walk 2 minutes (Repeat 2 times)
  • Day 5 – Run 12 minutes, walk 1 minutes (Repeat 2 times)

Week 5

  • Day 1 – Run 20 minutes, walk 3 minutes
  • Day 3 – Run 22 minutes, walk 3 minutes
  • Day 5 – Run 25 minute, walk 3 minutes

Week 6

  • Day 1 – Run 28 minutes
  • Day 3 – Run 30 minutes
  • Day 5 – Run a 5k

8-Week Plan

MBB Couch to 5K 8 week Plan

Week 1

  • Day 1 – Run 1 minute, walk 2 minutes (Repeat 5 times)
  • Day 3 – Run 1 minute, walk 2 minutes (Repeat 6 times)
  • Day 5 – Run 1 minute, walk 2 minutes (Repeat 7 times)

Week 2

  • Day 1 – Run 1.5 minutes, walk 2 minutes (Repeat 6 times)
  • Day 3 – Run 1.5 minutes, walk 2 minutes (Repeat 6 times)
  • Day 5 – Run 2 minutes, walk 2 minutes (Repeat 5 times)

Week 3

  • Day 1 – Run 3 minutes, walk 2 minutes (Repeat 6 times)
  • Day 3 – Run 3 minutes, walk 2 minutes (Repeat 6 times)
  • Day 5 – Run 5 minutes, walk 2 minutes (Repeat 5 times)

Week 4

  • Day 1 – Run 6 minutes, walk 2 minutes (Repeat 3 times)
  • Day 3 – Run 6 minutes, walk 1.5 minutes (Repeat 4 times)
  • Day 5 – Run 8 minutes, walk 2 minutes (Repeat 3 times)

Week 5

  • Day 1 – Run 10 minutes, walk 2 minutes (Repeat 2 times)
  • Day 3 – Run 10 minutes, walk 1.5 minutes (Repeat 2 times)
  • Day 5 – Run 10 minutes, walk 1 minutes (Repeat 3 times)

Week 6

  • Day 1 – Run 12 minutes, walk 2 minutes (Repeat 2 times)
  • Day 3 – Run 12 minutes, walk 1 minutes (Repeat 2 times)
  • Day 5 – Run 12 minutes, walk 30 seconds (Repeat 2 times)

Week 7

  • Day 1 – Run 20 minutes, walk 3 minutes
  • Day 3 – Run 24 minutes, walk 3 minutes
  • Day 5 – Run 28 minutes

Week 8

  • Day 1 – Run 30 minutes
  • Day 3 – Run 30 minutes
  • Day 5 – Run 5k

10-Week Plan

MBB Couch to 5K 10 week Plan

Week 1

  • Day 1 – Run 30 seconds, walk 3 minutes (Repeat 4 times)
  • Day 3 – Run 45 seconds, walk 3 minutes (Repeat 4 times)
  • Day 5 – Run 60 seconds, walk 3 minutes (Repeat 4 times)

Week 2

  • Day 1 – Run 1 minutes, walk 2 minutes (Repeat 4 times)
  • Day 3 – Run 1 minutes, walk 2 minutes (Repeat 5 times)
  • Day 5 – Run 1.5 minutes, walk 2 minutes (Repeat 5 times)

Week 3

  • Day 1 – Run 2 minutes, walk 2 minutes (Repeat 5 times)
  • Day 3 – Run 2 minutes, walk 2 minutes (Repeat 6 times)
  • Day 5 – Run 3 minutes, walk 2 minutes (Repeat 5 times)

Week 4

  • Day 1 – Run 4 minutes, walk 2 minutes (Repeat 4 times)
  • Day 3 – Run 4 minutes, walk 2 minutes (Repeat 5 times)
  • Day 5 – Run 5 minutes, walk 1.5 minutes (Repeat 4 times)

Week 5

  • Day 1 – Run 6 minutes, walk 2 minutes (Repeat 3 times)
  • Day 3 – Run 6 minutes, walk 1.5 minutes (Repeat 3 times)
  • Day 5 – Run 8 minutes, walk 2 minutes (Repeat 3 times)

Week 6

  • Day 1 – Run 10 minutes, walk 2 minutes (Repeat 2 times)
  • Day 3 – Run 10 minutes, walk 1.5 minutes (Repeat 2 times)
  • Day 5 – Run 12 minutes, walk 2 minutes (Repeat 2 times)

Week 7

  • Day 1 – Run 12 minutes, walk 1 minute (Repeat 2 times)
  • Day 3 – Run 15 minutes, walk 2 minutes (Repeat 2 times)
  • Day 5 – Run 15 minutes, walk 1.5 minutes (Repeat 2 times)

Week 8

  • Day 1 – Run 18 minutes, walk 2 minutes (Repeat 2 times)
  • Day 3 – Run 18 minutes, walk 1 minute (Repeat 2 times)
  • Day 5 – Run 20 minutes, walk 3 minutes

Week 9

  • Day 1 – Run 22 minutes, walk 3 minutes
  • Day 3 – Run 25 minutes, walk 3 minutes
  • Day 5 – Run 28 minutes

Week 10

  • Day 1 – Run 28 minutes
  • Day 3 – Run 30 minutes
  • Day 5 – Run 5k

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