The web site for those that have said 'I hate running' but want the benefits that running provides.  In as little as one hour a week, you can join the 'I Used To Hate Running Team'!

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The "I Used To Hate Running" Plan

There are two guiding principles to the 'I used to hate running' plan.

  • Start walking and slowly add short durations of running into your walk.

    For a more advanced starting point, start running and then walk as noted in the second principle

  • If while running, the thought 'I hate running' creeps into your head, walk!
When you are comfortable, run a little more.  Small increment additions will change the  physiology in your body and allow you to become a runner.

If the plan below is too difficult, cut the time or distance in half.  It the plan is too easy, multiply the time and distance by E=MC2 and divide by the square root of 267.  Just kidding.  What we mean is if the plan is too easy for you, add some amount of time and distance to the amount you run and let the guiding principles of this plan take over - if you think 'I hate this', walk.

Starting point - Determine points (a mailbox, street sign, etc.) that are roughly 1/4 mile, 1/2 mile, one mile and two miles from your starting point.  This can be a loop ending at your starting point.  If you cannot measure a distance, select points that take you 4, minutes, 7 1/2 minutes, 15 minutes and 30 minutes to walk at your current pace.  You are going to use the points to monitor your improvement.  There is nothing magic about the time and distances listed.  Adjust as you see fit.

Mileage and time log - It is not critical to keep track of your mileage and times, but from our experience the things that are tracked, get done.  It is easy to fall off a running program, and if you keep a log, you are less likely to fall of the wagon, as it were. 

Follow this plans for two months - the time is going to pass by either way, so you might as well use the time to get to the 'I used to hate running' stage.  For beginners, you need to dedicate at least one hour per week broken up into 3 - 4 days.  The more time you put in, the faster you will progress.

As a rule of thumb, never increase mileage by more than 10% (weekly or daily).  However, if you are starting with a small distance, you may be able to increase by much more than 10% (for example, if you are running 30 seconds at a time, doubling that to 60 seconds is fine.)  If you are running 5 miles, don't jump to 10.
The Beginners 'I Used To Hate Running' Plan 

Follow the plan below and with as little as one hour per week, you can join the 'I Used To Hate Running Team'.  If you want us to help you get there, check out the Personalized Service tab.  If you want to do it on your own, just follow the plan.

Be sure to complete at least 3 days of the program per week.  Four or five days of work will get you there faster.  However, this program should get you to a stage where you enjoy running with only three days of work per week.  Make sure you have at least one rest day per week.  Rest helps your body recover.  

Week 1
Day 1
– Walk whichever of the four distances or times you are comfortable with - quarter mile, half mile, mile or two miles / 4 minutes, 7 1/2 minutes, 15 minutes or 30 minutes.  Do not worry at all about the time it takes.  We hesitate to have you keep track of the time and distance at all.  Your goal is not to cover the distance in any particular time, but by keeping track of your time and distance, you’ll be able to see your improvement over time.  If you want to run some, great.  Minimum suggested time 15 minutes. 
Day 2
– See day 1, but run for short periods during your walk.  Keep the running portion short and speed slow.   Maybe you only run 10 steps one time during your walk.  Or maybe you can run for a few minutes at a time or for the entire fifteen minutes.  Use the guide we mentioned earlier.  If at any point you think 'I hate this', stop running and walk.  Minimum suggested time 15 minutes.
Day 3
– This is your long day.  Increase the running and walking distance / time – either the number of times you run, the distance you run, or both.  You are in control.  Remember what is physically happening to your body.  It is getting used to the increased work load.  Every time you stress your body, it is getting stronger.  Minimum suggested time 30 minutes.    
Other days in week - You can use these as rest days, additional training days or days to cross train. 
Week 2

See Week 1, but keep increasing the duration or distance of the run / walk while also increasing the running portion of your workout.  Remember, if you think I hate running, start walking.  If you hate the walking and don’t want to continue, we have to apologize for wasting your time over the last week.  Go enjoy some other activity. 

Week 3
See week 2
, but if you are feeling tired, it is OK to take a step back this week in terms of your workout to let your body recover.  If you feel strong, keep adding to your distance.  Make sure you do at least 3 days of work though.  Not that you are there yet, but most marathon training programs have two hard weeks followed by an easy week for recovery.
Week 4 and beyond

If you decreased your work load in week 3, come back strong and keep increasing your running.  By now, you should be well beyond where you started.  Compare your time or distances covered.  You should see an improvement – even if it is small.  Continue to increase your work load slowly but surely.  You’ll be running a 5K before you know it.

FOR MORE ADVANCED RUNNERS (that are still part of the 'I hate running' crowd) - Follow the basic concepts of the Beginner plan above, but add in a lot more running.  But never forget, if you think 'I hate running', walk.   

Follow the 'I Used To Hate Running' plan for a month or so and you'll enjoy running - because you are now in shape to run.  Soon you'll be running a 5K.  And if you can run a 5K, you can add increase your training a little and run a 10K.  If you can run a 10K, you can run a half marathon.  If you can run a half marathon, you can run a marathon.  You may not believe this now, but we have seen it over and over again.

Don't worry if you don't plan on ever running a marathon.

We're not saying, we're just saying....

The I Used To Hate Running Team