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Running is the most natural, efficient and cheap way of exercising. But it can also lead to overuse injuries due to its high impact nature. So, if you are just picking up running, we recommend that you start slowly, perhaps 2-3 times a week, always with a day in between sessions, starting at 20 minutes a day. You can then gradually increase your work load. The general rule is to increase your volume by about 10% of per week. For beginners we recommend a slower increase, perhaps 10% every two weeks.  


Running is a fantastic sport. Here we include only a very basic sample exercise. If, like Babak, you find yourself addicted to running, then we highly recommend that you either hire a coach, read a few books and articles,  or contact us for more guidance on how to increase your running volume and become a faster runner without getting injured. Done correctly, running can be very rewarding, but if done incorrectly, it can lead to many injuries.

One of the most important injury prevention methods is the dynamic warm up: this refers to a short whole body warm up before you get up from the couch and hit the road. It allows for your muscles, tendons, bones and nerves to wake up and get ready for the run. So, never start running before a good warm up. Here is one example of a dynamic warm up. Do these exercises slowly and take a short break (about 10 seconds) between each one. 

Jumping jacks: 30"

Mountain climber front and side: 30"

High knees: 30"

Front lunges: 10 on each side. 

Leg swings front/back & side to side: 10 each

Plank hold: 30"

Sprint run for 10", walk back slowly. repeat 3-4 times. 

Take a few deep breaths, imagining a great run to come! 

4 Sample Run exercises:

Exercise 1: Easy run:


Dynamic warm up. 

  1. Run zone 1: 5’

  2. Run zone 2: 10’

  3. Rune zone 1: 5’


Stretch for 5’

Increase zone 2 run duration by 10% each  week

Exercise 4: Run with whole buddy exercises:


If running alone makes you bored, you can always incorporate some whole buddy exercises into your runs. But make sure you are at a track, park or a safe sidewalk where there is no traffic.



Dynamic warm up.



Easy run (z1): 5’

Run your normal speed (z2), every 5 minutes stop and do this set:


10 lunges on each side

20 mountain climbers

10 pushups or pull ups if at a park or playground where you can use a bar for pull ups.


Do this for total of 40 minutes.


Stretch 5’

Exercise 2: Run sprints:

Best done at a running track to reduce risk of injury. Sprint runs are great for increasing your speed and weight loss as they burn a lot of calories.


Dynamic warm up.


  1. 5’ easy Z1

  2. 3x10” sprints with 30” easy run in between.

  3. 2' easy Z1

Main set:

  1. Run as fast as you can: 200 meters (half of track), or if not on a track, 30”.

  2. Walk/run very slowly (Z1): 200 meter, if not on track 1’. Take deep breaths to clear some of that carbon dioxide you have generated during your sprints.


Repeat 4 times.


Cool down:

Run easy (Z1): 5’


Stretch: 5’

You can increase the number of sets as you get better. You may also increase the duration of each sprint up to a minute but no more.

Exercise 3: Tempo Run:

Tempo runs are meant to train your muscles to maintain a higher speed for a more prolonged time.


Dynamic warm up.



  1. Easy run Z1: 5'

  2. 2x5’ moderate pace (z3) with 1’ easy run / walk between each set.


Cool down:

Easy run 5'

Stretch 5'.

As you get better you can increase the number of sets and duration of each tempo run. A rule of thumb is to increase by about 10% each week; we recommend 10% every 2 weeks for beginners. 

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