Training Programme


 I'm currently working towards a programme - just to build up mileage per week - eventually i would like to get up to 20 miles.  I'm reading the Runners Handbook by Bob Glover - and it's very good but i think i'm being completely thick or not taking in the information correctly.

 There is a training schedule called the Intermediate Beginner - for somebody who is currently running 3 times a week at about 3 miles/30 mins each time (me).  This training schedule is a guide for somebody who wishes to increase their mileage (me).  A typical week e.g. mon - off, tues- 3 miles, wed - 2 miles, thur - off, fri - 3 miles, sat -off, sun - 2miles. The subsequent weeks increase slowly - say an extra mile/extra day until you reach the 20 mile a week mileage.

  So is this how you increase by 10 % each week by increasing the overall mileage in the week?  I was under the impression that 'increase by 10%' rule was according to each time you go for a run - e.g. one week you run at 3 miles, 3 times a week and then the following week increase by 10% - so you run 3.3 miles, 3 times a week.

 The reason i'm being so pedantic is because i've ran in the past without a programme and i've got injuries from the classic beginners not allowing the body to adapt and running to much too soon and too often in the week.  So at the beginning of the year i decided that once and for all i was going to run with a programme - and really don't want to get injured now as so far (touch wood) i've not had any injuries.

 Hope the above makes sense. 

 Kind regards



  • It depends on what you want to do Samsunguser.  To only increase each run by 528 yds or less (you're working in miles) to me seems too conservative.  The intensity you run at is key here.  Whilst building mileage you need to keep your speed right down and the intensity light.  That is key, if you are running too fast, too far, too soon thats where you get problems.  Stay off concrete to lessen the impact and you will lessen the chance of injury.  Once you have built your mileage base (about 6 - 8 weeks) then add faster, shorter sessions.

    But, If thats what your the programme says and you want to follow a programme - that is what you do.  If you feel the programme is wrong for you - use a different programme.  There is no right or wrong really, there are lots of ways of doing it.

  • Hi,

     Thank you for your feedback.  I currently jog quite slow as i want to increase my distance more than speed.  The book says to run 3-5 times a week so i'm trying to increase to 4 days (currently do 4 times).  For me just getting out there and being able to run is great - but i would like to increase the distance but i feel like i'm struggling to do that over the past few weeks and haven't seemed to be able to increase.  I'm not interested in racing or marathons - just keeping fit and feeling good.

     Thank you

  • Hi

    I'm no expert, but I thought the increase by 10% rule was for long runs i.e. if you are training for a half marathon/marathon. 

    Generally, most people run so many days a week, building up their weekend (Sunday run) as their long run, which in your case, if you are running 4 times a week, could be 7-8 miles.  I wouldnt be in a hurry to increase the mileage too quickly, just get used to running consistently and get your body used to it.

    Hope this helps, as I said I'm no expert.

    Best of luck

  • Thank you. 

     Oh I see, so generally people who just want to run and keep fit don't really have a programme to increase it just comes in time once the body has adapted?  The only thing is - i can only get to 3.5 miles so far and would love to do a long run - but don't know how to get to the point where i can say i'm doing a long run on sunday and doing 6 miles and running easy the rest of the week - if you know what i mean - it's this part which i'm struggling to get right in my small brain image

  • Hi

    It sounds like you are doing really well already.  If you want to build up one of your runs to a longer distance you need to run this one at a slower pace than your other runs.  You say you can only get to 3.5 miles at the moment so if you wanted to increase this distance, slow down just on this run.

  • Thank you.  I run slow at the moment so i'm going to go even slower (practically walking then image) but atleast if i'm still moving then i'm sure it will help me and i will do this on a Sunday.

    Thank you.

  •  Hi, another way to increase your long run is to introduce some walk breaks. You will see some of the schedules on here are walk/run. As SBB says try going very slowly on your long run and you may find you can go further anyway. But otherwise you can e.g. run 8 mins walk 2, or run 9 mins walk 1 or whatever and you will find that the walk breaks will let you go much further which can be satisfying. Though if the plan is a good one it should take you on a gradual progression to your goal and this is probably the best way to avoid injury, so why not just trust the plan and follow it?  Good luck

  • Thanks B - I will try walk breaks too - will report in next week after i've attempted my 1st long run image
  • I think you may be expecting too much. Just because a plan advises you to do such a thing - it doesn't mean you won't get injured.

    And if you just want to keep fit - I would avoid the long runs. 20 miles is a huge distance unless you are specifically training for a marathon. And if you run slowly then a four hour run is far too much for just keeping fit.
  • Hi,

     The reason i wanted to follow a programme is because in the past i've just gone out and pushed my self too much and too soon ending in an injury.  So far, by following this programme i have been regularly running without issue.  I don't want to run 20miles in one run - just to spread the 20 miles over a course of the week.  Also, don't envisage being able to run for 4 hours in one go either image

    Thank you

  • samsunguser wrote (see)

    Thank you. 

     Oh I see, so generally people who just want to run and keep fit don't really have a programme to increase it just comes in time once the body has adapted? 

    Samsunger - get it out of your head that just because you only want to run to keep fit you are somehow not a proper runner! image  You are a runner like the rest of us and still ned to build up the same - whether you use a programme or not. I think you already know this - just take it easy speed and intensitywise.  You say your are currently running 3 times a week covering 3 miles each time?  So, next week do 2 x 2 miles and 2 x 3 miles, the week after try 1 x 3 miles 2 x 2 miles and 4 on Sunday.  The week after1 x 2 miles, 2 x 3 miles and 5 miles on Sunday.  You will soon be doing 6 miles on a Sunday!  Every 3 weeks out of 4 take an easy (consolidation) week and cut your mileage back to allow your body to accept the new mileage. Then start to build again.  Any twinges, ease back - listen to your body.
  • Hi Tigerlily,

     Thanks for the great feedback - i will give the schedule you have recommended a go - the only thing that i worry about is the fact that i haven't yet been able to run 5 miles in one go.  So am i right in saying that by working towards this schedule my body should be allow me to run this distance?

     Thank you so much for your reply image


  • Oh I see ! Yeah 20 m over a week is a much better idea than in one run!
  • If you want to build up, why not follow an intermediate 10K programme, there's no law that says you have to be doing a race to follow one image

    You never know you might find you want to enter some races once your confidence builds.

    Or you could follow a half marathon schedule until it gets up to a milage you want to stick at.


  • I am no expert but a complete newbie but like you am really only running to keep fit. Or rather to find out how fit I can get but for other activities.

    Anyway from what I have read (I tend to research things way too much before I even start doing it) I think the 10% guideline is only meant to give you n idea of a slow steady progression. From what I read it seems to be considered better to improve slowly and not be tempted to take too great a step forward then a big step back. I guess the thinking is the demoralising effect of a big step back due to say injury or just pushing yourself to far and the next run being a lot harder. I did this when I was progressing slowly and steadily forward and took a break due to being ill for a while. After an annoying week or so off I decided to punish myself for taking longer than needed off and ran and ran. I felt ok that night (apart from a twinge behind the knee) and doubled the distance. That was one good run for me but two days later I was so bad that I was actually worse than my very first run!!

    Sorry for rambling but if you are not running for the goal of a race only fitness then I wonder if it is better just to go with how you feel. I know early on in a run if I am having a good day so if not I slow down and do a shorter one if I'm going well I do a longer distance or run short but faster paced run. I guess with a rough outline of what I want to do to or a rough schedule but be prepared to change a long run day for a shorter ru day if your body tells you. Also I believe in effort as a good indicator of the pace you should be doing. As I said I am a beginner so I test my effort by talking or singing every so often (I run at night and not anywhere near people). If you are out of breath singing then slow down a bit if its easy then speed up. Not scientific but it works for me. At the end of the day I guess you are not intending to do a marathon so its up to you what you do. I intend to continue just doing what I want and what I feel like doing.

    One thing a guy in the local running gear shop (a proper one with all the gait analysis video on a treadmill stuff) once told me that it takes about 3 months for your body to adjust to running properly. Not sure how true but I guess after 3 months of running you will have a better idea of what running you want to do and what works for you for your goals. And that time your body will be in a better state to do it too I reckon.

  • samsunguser wrote (see)

    Hi Tigerlily,

     Thanks for the great feedback - i will give the schedule you have recommended a go - the only thing that i worry about is the fact that i haven't yet been able to run 5 miles in one go.  So am i right in saying that by working towards this schedule my body should be allow me to run this distance?

     Thank you so much for your reply image


    Samsunger - it's not so much a schedule..... it's just what I'd do in your position.  Remember though - and this is important - try to stay off concrete as much as you can to lessen impact.  Back off if you feel any twinges which don't settle and listen to your body!  As you've had injury before I personally wouldn't recommend following a 10k race programme which will involve speedwork.  Don't do speedwork until you've built your base mileage - then add speed at shorter distances.

    And take LL above with a pinch of salt - he is as fit as a flea!! image I agree with the 3 month period for adjustment - that is where you build your base.  Once you've got that you are ready to go!! image

  • Hello,

     I'm very grateful for all feedback i've received - I've taken it all on board and i feel it's all much clearer to me now image  Hoorah!!!

     I'm going to take it slow, build up gradually and listen to my body regardless of what run i intend to do on any given day.

     Thank you so much!!!  Tiger Lily, Cougie, Lanky Lad and Sweaty Betty Boo:!!

  • Hi,

    For anybody who is listening - i'm reporting in after i decided to add an extra day in to my usual 3 x day run routing per week.  I think i may have pushed it too far since doing this and have had a pain at the back of my knee on the inside.  Feels quite tender to touch at the side of the knee cap too.  So feeling a bit miserable.  Just seems that as soon as i get to a point where i push myself a little further - and remember i'm only doing 3 miles x 3 times a week and running slow between 9:30 and 10:00 miles - that i get taken back to square one again.

     Sorry for moaning!  Just feel better to share my thoughts with other peeps who enjoy running.


  • If you're only just starting (:30-10:00 minute miling isn't that slow
  • thats definitely not slowimage

     My advice is listen to your body and back off when you need to and rest if you need to.walk if you need to..............

    at the early stage better to go slowly than injure and stop

     I would also advice againgst any speedwork  in any schedules............just build up slowly.either by slowly increasing the number of days you run...or by slowly building up the length of the run if you cannot run more than 2 or 3 days....

    Good luck and will all come in time if you are patientimage

  • Hi,

    Thanks all for feedback.  My knee is still weak today when i bend it to walk - so i'm going to lay off and rest it.  Will listen to body and won't attempt any speed work just yet.

  • My knee is still not right and it's now 7 days since i last ran image 

Sign In or Register to comment.