ARE YOU READY?

Runner's World (UK) - - New Runners -

Not fit enough to tackle the 20 mins of walk/run in week one? The four-week ‘pre-plan plan’ starts with 10 min­utes of walk­ing, which can be bro­ken into two five-minute walks.

WHAT SHALL I WEAR?

All you need are com­fort­able train­ers and cloth­ing. It need not be run­ningspe­cific gear to be­gin with, just some­thing that won’t chafe or get too hot or heavy if you sweat.

WHERE DO I START?

The ideal sur­face for your first ses­sions is a level park path or grass, but if you only have pave­ments at your dis­posal, that’s fine. ‘Out-and-back’ routes have an in-built men­tal ad­van­tage: you’re head­ing home from the half­way point. Or if you’re not sure you can con­tinue for the al­lot­ted time, small laps near your house elim­i­nate the risk of end­ing up too far from home.

WHAT ABOUT EAT­ING?

Ide­ally al­low a cou­ple of hours to digest a meal be­fore ex­er­cis­ing, but if you haven’t eaten for four or five hours, have a small snack, such as half a ba­nana or a pot of yo­ghurt an hour be­fore, for en­ergy.

HOW SHOULD I FEEL?

It’s fine to feel a lit­tle breath­less and to get a bit hot. But you shouldn’t feel too un­com­fort­able dur­ing the ses­sion, or ex­hausted by the end of it. Imag­ine a scale of 1 to 10, with 10 be­ing your max­i­mum ef­fort – you want to rate your ef­fort at around a 5 or 6.

HOW ABOUT TECH­NIQUE?

Stay re­laxed but ‘ tall’. Imag­ine you have a he­lium bal­loon gen­tly draw­ing you up­wards. Keep your stride short and think ‘ fast and light’ when your feet touch the ground.

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