Running 101 – 4 Week Beginner’s Guide to Running

Sunshine, bathing suits, and long days makes summer an inspirational time of year to get outside, be spontaneous, and start something new. So it comes as no surprise that most want to start a new exercise regimen during the warmer months. One of the most “no-brainer” forms of exercise is running. It’s a total body workout that burns major calories and all you need is a pair of shoes, a ponytail, and a road!

I never thought I’d love running. A dancer in my teen years, running even just a mile felt like death. Now? I can’t go more than two days without hitting the pavement, trails, or treadmill. Give me a good playlist and there’s no bad mood a run can’t fix. It took time and consistency, but now I’m running an average of three to five miles about three to five days per week.

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Maybe you’re one of those people who see runners on the road and think you could only dream of doing the same, you’re bored with your current cardio routine but have never had the guts to hit the pavement, you’ve been walking for a while and it’s starting to feel too easy, or you want to sign up for one of those fun color runs! Regardless of your current routine, if you’ve never run before, it can be extremely daunting, but not impossible!

LIS - Brooks -101

Running is amazing because our bodies are naturally built to do it. Yup, that’s right, there’s no person who literally “can’t” run. Like any form of exercise, it takes practice and you have to build up your strength to become better at it. But, when there’s a will (and an expert, cue my entrance), there’s a way! I’m going to walk you through the first three steps of starting to run.

  1. Find the right shoe.
  2. Find your running style.
  3. Develop your running endurance.

**Disclaimer: if you have any joint injuries in your lower body (back, knee, hip, ankle, or foot) running may not suit you at the moment since it is harder on the joints than other lower impact modes of exercise. Like any new exercise program, consult your physician before starting it.

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1. Finding the right shoe.

Light and airy, cushioned, energized… there’s so many options now when it comes to picking a running shoe. A blessing and a curse, right? Brooks Running has made this process easy with their Shoe Finder function. Remember those Cosmo magazine personality quizzes? It’s just like that! After answering a few simple questions they can match you with the correct shoe! It’s like online dating for your feet.
Brooks Running Clothes and Shoes

2. Finding your running style.

This is the fun part because your running style is just that, yours. As Brooks Running’s Run Signature puts it, “Informed by our scientific research, we assess the way each body naturally runs. Then, we empower runners with choice on how they want to experience the run—be it soft, springy, flexible, or fast.” We are all born with different strides, balance, coordination, and muscle patterns and Brooks believes in supporting each person’s individual structure. “The answer to reducing injuries, enhancing comfort, and improving performance is not to change or fix a runner’s “flaws,” but to work with the natural and highly individual motion paths of the joints. The focus then becomes keeping the runner in this path of least resistance for as long as possible during a run.” Proper running form is not a one size fits all. That is why Brooks make shoes built to enhance all running styles! You don’t fit yourself into a shoe, the shoe fits you!

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3. Develop your running endurance.

Never run before? Start with alternating between three minutes of walking and one minute of running for 15 to 20 minutes. Just a beginner with some running experience? Start with alternating two minutes of walking and one minute of jogging for 15 to 30 minutes. If you’re a little bit more advanced, you can swap this to one minute of walking and two minutes for 20 to 30 minutes. Every week decrease the walking and increase the running by 30 seconds until you find yourself running continuously! Repeat this two to four times per week.

4 Week Beginner's Running Guide

So tell me, do you like to run? How did you start running? Thinking of starting a new running program? Let me know any further questions you may have in the comment box below!


Health and happiness,



*Disclaimer: Brooks Running sent me free gear in exchange for this blog post. However, all opinions and statements are my own. I truly love this brand!

Hi and welcome to Life in Spandex! I'm Emily, a personal trainer who believes there should be no secrets standing in your way to getting fit. I am sharing my knowledge here on this blog in order to help you reach your goals. Fitness should be fun, eating healthy should taste good, and feeling your absolute best is the ultimate goal. Let's get fit together!
  1. Nice shoes! i love this post. Thank you Emily !

  2. I love this guide! I’ve ran off and on my entire life (most recently more off than on) and always look for new tips when I’m ready to get back in the swing of things. Will most definitely be pinning this!

    xx, Danielle | Pineapple & Prosecco

  3. I absolutely love running, but at the moment a knee injury is keeping me from doing it – But I recently got the go for my physio to start running again, and I’m so excited 🙂

    1. Injuries are the worst! I’m so happy to hear you’re on your way to recovery though 😀

  4. i enjoy running, really wanting to start running longer distances. I bought the Adidas ultra boost and they are so comfortable to run in. Doing intervals at the moment (with my little one in the pram) and look forward to building it up to a bigger run using your tips!

    1. Sounds like you’re kicking some butt Cynthia! Keep it up 🙂

  5. Helpful tips. I have run about 150 KM this year. Love running so much

    1. That is so awesome!!!

  6. I’ve always dreaded running but you inspired me to give it another try. Great post!

    1. Yay!!! It’s always worth another shot. Sometimes you go at it too quickly and it’s a bad experience.

  7. Really great read- very helpful and motivating tips! I need to get back into running so I think reading your post might have just convinced me! x

    1. That makes me so happy Krysti!!! You’re gonna love it once you start

  8. I have always wanted to be a runner, I’m hopefully going to start going in the mornings with another teacher, so maybe having a buddy to go with will help!

    xoxo, SS

    Southern And Style

    1. Yes a buddy always helps and makes it so much more fun! 🙂

  9. Im also doing this, but for 10 weeks! 🙂 And a bit more running, in a few weeks I need to finish 10km race! 🙂

  10. I like this! Baby steps are what I need! And I LOVE your running shoes!c

    1. Thanks Kristen!! Let me know if you have any other questions 🙂 xo

  11. Maybe it’s the shoes for me then. I’ve definitely tried endurance and still really dislike running!

    1. Hmmm maybe you’d like more of an interval/sprint program??

    2. What do you dislike about it?

  12. It’s definitely something you build on like you’ve shown. A great shoe is absolutely essential!

    1. Yes yes yes Liz! 🙂

  13. Great posts and that’s a fabulous program for a newbie. Running is my go to and favorite workout. I miss my long solo runs since I don’t get them very often anymore.

    1. Why no more of them Amber?

  14. Running is such a fun way to stay active. Thanks for the tips

    1. Agreed! You’re welcome 🙂

  15. I need to get into running and this seems easy enough

    1. You got this Sophia!

  16. Great post and tips to start running!

  17. This is such a great idea. I think the reason people get so burnt out with exercising or running is because they try to do too much to fast. This is a great way to build up to the next level

    1. Absolutely!! Thanks Dia 🙂

  18. I will walk forever at my age no more running.

    1. Do you have joint problems?

  19. Oh that sounds so much more manageable 🙂 Thanks for sharing!!! I love how gradual and do albe you make it sound! now to find me some shoes!

  20. Finding the right shoes is so important. I used to struggle with compartment syndrome (I think that’s the correct term). When I bought some decent shoes and tied them tight it really supported my foot and the problem stopped.

    1. That’s awesome! Im so happy you can run without pain now 🙂

  21. This is really helpful and easy to follow, the biggest mistake I made when running was getting the wrong shoes!

    1. Thanks Deano!! Ya the wrong shoe can make running feel miserable!

  22. I definitely love this post! I have been doing yoga and thinking of running. Your post definitely helped me. Developing your running endurance really made me realize how I can include walking in my routine. Your 4 Week Beginner’s Running Guide is a must share. Excellent tips! xx

    1. Thank you so much!!! 😀 so happy you like it!

  23. Excellent tips! Finding the right shoe is crucial for me! Not just in fit, but also in style, because when you feel good in your running gear, it encourages you to actually run!

    1. Couldn’t agree with you more!!

  24. This is a great list, thanks for sharing. I’ve been trying to get into running but I think having a bit of structure like this will really help! 🙂

    1. Thank you Ahu! Let me know when you start if you have any other questions 🙂

  25. I would love more tips on different types of running “styles” why are they different etc.

    1. Ok!! If you follow the link to Brooks Signature they break it all down for ya 🙂

  26. Love this! I’ve been thinking about running for a while now (although it’s winter where I live, and running in freezing temperatures is not my idea of fun). But, there’s always the treadmill! I will take your routine and give it a try. Thanks for sharing!

    1. Thank you Sol!! Yes you can absolutely use this routine on the treadmill too 🙂

  27. I’m just starting to run and this is helpful!

    1. Yay! So glad to hear that 🙂

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