30 Day Running Challenge For Beginners & New Runners

30 Day Running Challenge For Beginners & New Runners

If you’re ready to start taking control of your health and fitness as a new beginning runner and build a habit of running, then this 30 Day Running Challenge: Beginners & New Runners is a great place to start.

Regardless of your current fitness level, background, age, or running experience, you can complete a running challenge!

I know, I know, you may be thinking ‘but you don’t know me’. You’re right, I don’t know you; but what I do know is that consistency is the key to building fitness and making progress. Anyone has the power to build consistency in their regular routine, even you!

A running challenge is a huge accomplishment and a great stepping stone for future fitness goals and ventures. If you can maintain a high level of consistency over the next 30 days, you’ll complete the beginner level 30 Day Running Challenge.

In this article, we’ve included everything you need to get started running as a beginner - from program details and a calendar schedule to helpful tips for new runners to help you make it through the 30 day running challenge healthy and strong. Let’s run!

Tips for Your First Running Challenge

If this is your first running challenge, or even if it’s just been a while since you’ve laced up your sneaks, you’re in the right place! These tips will help you hit the ground running with confidence.

1) Know Your Starting Point

As a trainer, I run the risk of sounding like a broken record when I urge you to adjust this challenge to your fitness level and needs. Be realistic about where you’re starting. If you need to slow down, slow down. If you need to take more rest, take it without guilt!

This 30 day running challenge is about you, so it only makes sense to adapt it to a level you can safely manage. Keep in mind, it takes time and consistency for the body to build endurance and adapt to the high impact nature of running.

When we’re eager to see results it’s not uncommon to push too far too soon and risk injury. Runners collectively have one of the highest injury rates due to overtraining, and muscle imbalances or weaknesses. Don’t be one of the many. Listen to your body, and adjust your training as needed.

2) Build Progression into your Routine

When you look at your 30-day calendar below, you’ll notice you don’t start running 30 minutes straight on day 1. We start with just 1 minute of running at a time, and progress to 30 minutes of running over the course of the challenge.

While 30 minutes may seem out of reach now, by staying consistent on your runs, your body will gradually build the endurance and strength necessary to step up to the challenge.

You’ll notice this new runner program is built with a natural progression in mind, so all the planning is already done for you. You’ll complete each workout twice, before advancing to the next workout. With each new workout you’ll spend more time running, and sometimes less time recovering as well.

What I do invite you to do is take note of how you’re feeling each day before and after each workout and ask yourself if this was an appropriate progression for you. If it’s too much, be honest and kind enough with yourself to take a step back before moving forward.

3) Take Rest Days

Consistently providing your body rest is just as important as staying consistent on your runs. With your rest days, you’re welcome to take a complete rest day if that’s what suits you.

However, I’d recommend staying active with what we like to call active rest days. Some examples of active rest include going on a light walk or jog, completing some low impact cross training like swimming or biking, incorporating strength training into your off days, or stretching out tight and tired muscles.

4) Stick to the Plan

When we miss a workout, it’s so easy to get off track, give up on finishing the challenge ahead of us. As hard as it may be, stick to the plan.

It’s okay to miss a day or two, just don’t let it derail you. If you need to repeat a day in the challenge to get back on track, do it, or hop right back in! Just keep moving, you’ll be so glad you did.

5) Identify your Community

We weren’t meant to do this alone. Whether you invite a friend, your family, or a group of coworkers to complete this challenge with you, it’ll be that much easier when you have a support team behind you.

If you can’t think of anyone to do this running challenge with, join the Sunny Health & Fitness Facebook Group. We’re here to keep each other motivated and accountable, and we’d be happy to join you in your fitness journey!

Sunny Family 30 Day Running Challenge 2021 for New Runners & Beginners

Ready to get started? Below you’ll find your daily schedule for the Sunny Family 30-Day Running Challenge!

30 Day Beginner Running Challenge Calendar

Day

Workout

Total Time

Day 1

(1:00 Run, 2:00 Walk or Jog) Repeat 8-10 times. 

24-30 minutes

Day 2

Rest

 

Day 3

(1:00 Run, 2:00 Walk or Jog) Repeat 8-10 times. 

24-30 minutes

Day 4

Rest

 

Day 5

Rest

 

Day 6

(1:30 Run, 1:30 Walk or Jog) Repeat 8-10 times. 

24-30 minutes

Day 7

Rest

 

Day 8

(1:30 Run, 1:30 Walk or Jog) Repeat 8-10 times. 

24-30 minutes

Day 9

Rest

 

Day 10

Rest

 

Day 11

(3:00 Run, 1:00 Walk or Jog) Repeat 6-7 times. 

24-28 minutes

Day 12

Rest

 

Day 13

(3:00 Run, 1:00 Walk or Jog) Repeat 6-7 times. 

24-28 minutes

Day 14

Rest

 

Day 15

Rest

 

Day 16

(4:00 Run, 1:00 Walk or Jog) Repeat 5-6 times. 

25-30 minutes

Day 17

Rest

 

Day 18

(4:00 Run, 1:00 Walk or Jog) Repeat 5-6 times. 

25-30 minutes

Day 19

Rest

 

Day 20

Rest

 

Day 21

(6:00 Run, 1:00 Walk or Jog) Repeat 4 times. 

28 minutes

Day 22

Rest

 

Day 23

(6:00 Run, 1:00 Walk or Jog) Repeat 4 times. 

28 minutes

Day 24

Rest

 

Day 25

Rest

 

Day 26

(8:00-9:00 Run, 1:00 Walk or Jog) Repeat 3 times. 

27-30 minutes

Day 27

Rest

 

Day 28

(8:00-9:00 Run, 1:00 Walk or Jog) Repeat 3 times. 

27-30 minutes

Day 29

Rest

 

Day 30

30 Minute Run, no rest breaks

 

 

Beginner Tips for New Runners

If you’re brand new to running, there is tons of advice out there, and it can be overwhelming to sift through the good and the bad. I’ve listed just a few simple things to think about as you get started below.

1) Warmup & Cooldown

Although it’s not listed on the calendar, I always recommend warming up before and cooling down after your workouts. Start and end your workouts with 5-10 minutes of brisk walking or jogging.

2) Running Form

Proper running form is incredibly important to increase efficiency and reduce your risk of injury. However, proper running form doesn’t come naturally to most people, we must learn how to run correctly. Watch the video below in which Sunny Instructor Sam Candler coaches you on the basics of proper running form.

3) Practice Breathing

Often new runners tend to breathe with short choppy breaths to get more oxygen into their lungs. However, this is not the best way to breathe when running. Try to focus on breathing deeply, allowing your lungs to fully fill with oxygen, and fully exhaling as well.

4) Pace Yourself

One last thing to think about is your pace. Try to run at a conversational pace, so that if I was next to you, we could hold a conversation.

If you’re huffing and puffing throughout your run, you’re pushing too hard, and you’ll want to scale it back a bit. Stay focused on holding a pace that you feel comfortable maintaining for the allotted time. Speed will come with time.

What’s Next

Congrats! You’ve made it to the end of the 30 Day Running Challenge for beginners. What’s next? Hopefully, by now, you’ve built a solid habit of running into your regular routine and are interested in expanding it.

If so, feel free to continue running, gradually increasing your running time or pace each week to match your fitness level. Also, consider checking out our 5K Training Plan, which would be a great next step after finishing your running challenge!

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