Running is a great way for anyone to get fit and stay fit. Whether you are contemplating taking up running or you already run, it’s a good idea to aim for a set amount of runs per week to optimise health benefits and help prevent muscle strain.
How Many Times a Week Should You Run?
We all have different reasons to run – some do it for the love of running, while others might want to lose weight or get in shape and still many more have focused training goals for a future marathon or competition.These goals along with your previous running experience can influence how many times a week you should run.
Below we’ve outlined some tips and weekly running guidelines based on your experience as a runner. Keep in mind that whether you’re a beginner or an advanced runner, the number of times you ought to run a week can also vary depending on the distance and intensity of your regular runs.
If you’re new to running, starting a running habit does not have to be daunting. Along with a firm resolve, you’ll need a comfortable pair of running shoes.
To start, aim to run at least 3 times a week for a minimum of 20 minutes. The secret is to be consistent so pick an ideal time of the day – this is your ‘workout window’ that you can commit to throughout the week.
At first, try to stick with running 3 or 4 times per week as the rest days will help your body to recover while you build up your endurance and improve your pace.
As an intermediate runner, you will probably have achieved a good rhythm and pace so it’s time to take your running frequency up a notch.
If you’ve been comfortably running for about 3 months, you can increase to 4 or 5 running sessions a week. To improve your performance, vary the mileage and resistance to keep your muscles challenged without causing fatigue.
Running can place stress on the muscles and joints so taking time off to heal is essential. Some experienced runners prefer to run on a daily basis while others stick to 5 runs a week.
While frequency is mostly an individual preference, it’s best to rest for a day every week to avoid unnecessary injuries that could lead to far longer breaks from running than you anticipated!
How Often Should You Run When Training For a Marathon?
Maybe you’re simply competitive or you began running with a goal of eventually participating in a marathon, whatever the reason, running a marathon is challenging and will test your limits on different fronts – physically, emotionally, and mentally. It’s important to consider how long you have been running before you decide to participate.
Most experts recommend training for at least 6 months and you should ideally be running for a minimum of 5 times a week before signing up.
Stamina is key so you need to look at safely building up your endurance by incorporating long runs into your routine. If crossing the finishing line is a dream you’re determined to conquer, read more about training for a marathon here.
The Benefits of Running
Running is a versatile sport with abundant benefits and while this depends on how many times you run, the more you run, the better it is for your overall wellbeing.
As a highly aerobic activity, running burns calories and speeds up your metabolism. The added bonus: you will keep burning fat long after the run!
6 Top Benefits of Running
- Sharper focus and concentration
- A better night’s sleep
- Improved mood with a boost of endorphins
- Weight loss
- Boost in confidence and self-esteem
- Better heart and cardiovascular health
Start Off on The Right Foot
For the best experience with your new running routine and to avoid burnout and prevent injuries here are our top tips:
5 Tips For Getting Started With Running
- Lace-up the right shoes – Most injuries tend to be feet-related so wearing comfortable shoes is essential. Make sure they fit well and provide plenty of support for your feet.
- Warm-up well – A warm up is a great way to help prevent injuries and get your muscles ready for the workout of running. Read this post for our tips on how to warm-up for a run.
- Pace yourself – Maintain an easy pace throughout so you don’t place undue stress on your joints. Your run should be comfortable enough to hold a conversation.
- Stay hydrated – Hydration is important so carry a small bottle of water and drink when you’re thirsty, especially on hot days.
- Listen to your body – No one is invincible so if you’re feeling under the weather or have sore muscles consider taking a day off.
If you want to improve your technique and ramp up your stamina, consider hiring a running coach on Bidvine!