Over the past few weeks, I have been learning how to run at a local running clinic.  Sound funny?  At first we thought so.  After a couple of weeks, we realized that there is more to running than just going out for a run.  Some things that can impact your ability to be able to run on an ongoing basis are your posture, your shoes, your eating habits, walk breaks and stretching.  One day a week we run with the running club and then our homework is to run two more times in the week.  Each week we run a little more than the previous week.  The ultimate goal is to run 5 kilometers at a St. Patrick's Day run in Burnaby.  
 
I wanted to share with you the progression of running at the clinic because it is a perfect example on how a series of little steps can result in reaching a big goal. 
 
Here is how the program works:
 
 
10 Week Beginner's Running Program

Week #
Run - Walk Ratio (20 Minute Total)
Total Run Time
1 Run 1 minute, walk 2 minutes - do 6 sets, followed by running 1 minute

 7 min
2 Run 1 minute, walk 1 minute - do 10 sets 10 min

3 Run 2 minutes, walk 1 minute - do 6 sets, followed by running 2 minutes

14 min
4 Run 3 minutes, walk 1 minute - do 5 sets 15 min

5 Run 4 minutes, walk 1 minute - do 4 sets 16 min

6 Run 5 minutes, walk 1 minute - do 3 sets, followed by running 2 minutes

17 min
7 Run 6 minutes, walk 1 minute - do 3 sets 18 min

8 Run 8 minutes, walk 1 minute - do 2 sets, followed by running 2 minutes

18 min
9 Run 10 minutes, walk 1 minute - do 2 sets 20 min

10 Run 20 minutes  20 min
 

Each week the goal is to run the same Run-Walk ratio three different days in the week.  For example, in week three we ran 2 minutes and walked 1 minute.  We did this ratio six times in a row and then ran an additional 2 minutes for a total of 14 minutes of running.  We then did this same Run-Walk ratio on two other days of the week for a total of 42 minutes of running for the week.  The 5 kilometer run seems a little unreachable at the beginning, however, we were surprised to find out that in week 7, we ran close to 3 kilometers.  We are over half way there!

 
This same structure could be used for goals that you may have.  If you wanted to exercise more, you could start by working out 10 min three times a week and increase gradually until you are exercising for 45-60 minutes.  If you wanted to play the guitar, you could use this structure to go from being a beginner to being an intermediate player. 
 
What do you want to accomplish in the next 10 weeks?