Woman Exercising Outdoors

STRONG Challenge: Couch to 5K

Become a Runner Regardless of Age or Skill Level

Running is a common exercise many people include in their workouts. But some people struggle to run for long distances or to run at all. If you’ve always wanted to become a runner but thought your age or skill level held you back, think again!

The popular Couch to 5K program has helped thousands of people leave their couches and run up to 3.1 miles, and many participants run much farther! The program was started in 1996 by Josh Clark to provide a gentle transition for your body and muscles to become accustomed to running. Your first runs will include alternating walking and jogging, running small distances, and building up strength and endurance. After eight weeks, the goal is for you to be able to run five kilometers or for 30 minutes non-stop.

Running in Central Florida is a community affair. Several local resources for those looking to lace up their running shoes are available:

  • Track Shack running pros encourage you to get outside and feel the air, feel the blood moving in your muscles, and notice your mind transform as your body gets fit. Search for race etiquette, training videos, and more.
  • The Orlando Runners Club is always accepting new members regardless of skill level or pace. Check out local races, find a running buddy, and more.
  • If you choose to train indoors, such as on a treadmill, check out Very Well Fit’s take on a weekly training guide to prepare for a 5K from the comfort of your own home.

We hope you’ll find a running routine right for you to grow stronger in spirit, mind, and body. If you’re taking part in the STRONG Challenge, you can also share your running journey in the STRONG Challenge Facebook group!