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Taking the next step: how to transition from walking to running

If you’re a casual walker looking to intensify your exercise, you should give running a try. It can burn more calories, strengthen your heart, and lower your cholesterol levels. Running can also reduce stress levels and lead to developing a healthier lifestyle. Most importantly, running nourishes your mind and soul by helping you clear your head and find peace within yourself. But how do you even begin to transition from walking to running? Our advice below will get you on the right path, the path to completing your first half marathon! This is a journey that will take time. Just remember, you’re not alone on your journey! We’re here to help you transition from walking to running. Here’s an excellent playlist for your journey!

Running gear

Your transition from walking to running may not be as difficult as you think. Make sure you have a pair of comfortable running shoes. You can extend the life of your running shoes (and save money) by only running in them. Proper fitting running shoes can also help prevent painful shin splints. Here are 7 more tips to avoid shin splints and keep your transition from walking to running on track! Wear workout gear that allows you to move freely, is lightweight, and wicks sweat. Keep a water bottle nearby to stay hydrated and replenish lost fluids. We’re fans of nuun hydration and their tablets. It’s easy to carry and help replace lost electrolytes. 

Begin your journey from walking to running

Let’s assume you walk four or five days every week and want to begin running. That’s a great start! Even if you don’t walk that much, the steps below will help you during your transition from walking to running. Pro tip: you can always take breaks in between if you are out of breath or feel exhausted.

Weeks 1-3

Develop an exercise schedule if you don’t currently have one. The goal is to become more comfortable being on your feet for extended periods of time.

  • First week – walk 30 minutes/day for four days
  • Second week – walk 40 minutes/day for four days
  • Third week – walk 50 minutes/day for four days

Weeks 4-6

Now it’s time to crank it up a bit! But don’t get too excited just yet. You want to slowly incorporate jogging into your schedule.

  • Fourth week – 10-minute warm-up walk, alternate 30-second light jog/4-minute walk for 15 minutes, 5-minute cool down walk
  • Fifth week – 10-minute warm-up walk, alternate 1-minute light jog/4-minute walk for 20 minutes, 5-minute cool down walk
  • Sixth week – 10-minute warm-up walk, alternate 2-minute light jog/3-minute walk for 25 minutes, 5-minute cool down walk

Week 7

When you feel comfortable with this routine, increase your jogging intervals and decrease your walking intervals as you see fit. Set a goal for yourself before you begin. Feel free to pick up the pace during your jog if it feels good. If you feel overwhelmed or exhausted, cut back the time.

  • Seventh week – 5-minute warm-up walk, alternate 3-minute jog/2-minute walk for 25 minutes, 5-minute cool down walk

Week 8

If you continue to feel comfortable, extend the duration of your intervals as you see fit. Alternate your jog and walking like previous routines. Continue to set small goals to reach. Feel free to pick up the pace during your jog if it feels good. If you feel overwhelmed or exhausted, cut back the time.

  • Eighth week – 5-minute warm-up walk, alternate 5-minute jog/1-minute walk for 30 minutes, 5-minute cool down walk

You did it!

By now, jogging for longer periods of time should become more and more comfortable. Congratulations, you’ve made the transition from walking to running! Continue to extend your jogging time. Maybe even quicken your stride and break into slow runs. You’ll eventually eliminate the walking portion of your intervals. When you feel comfortable running for 30-40 minutes, it’s time to sign up for your first half marathon! Do you have advice for someone who wants to graduate from walking to running? Let us know in the 3M Half Marathon Facebook Group or on Twitter.

The 2020 September running playlist is the anthem you need to chase your 13.1-mile PR

We’ve got more tunes for you because Austin is The Live Music Capital of the World. We’re sharing our favorite tunes with you every month so you can train for and chase your half marathon PR. Often times one song (or several!) can power you through a tough time during an intense workout or a long run. Trust us, we speak from experience! Jam out to the entire September running playlist or take your favorites and make your own list. The 2020 September running playlist has the music you need, including Austin’s rockers The Black Angels and megastar Lady Gaga. Don’t forget, we share every song on the massive #WeLiketheSoundofThat playlist and Twitter. Follow us so you know what’s next!

Playlist pro tips:

1) drag the 2020 September Running Playlist to your ‘Playlists’ section for quick access

2) click the download button so you can listen even if you’re offline

Utilize the September running playlist and these 5 self-care tips to maximize your training. Keep the volume at a level where you can pay attention to your surroundings. It’s important to know what’s going on around you! Is there something you like that we didn’t list? Let us know in the 3M Half Marathon Facebook Group and Twitter.

Follow us on Pinterest and discover more ways to organize your running shoes

Sometimes our shoe collection gets out of control. This is especially true when you have specific shoes for specific activities, like wearing your running shoes only when you run. There have been a few times where we couldn’t find the pair we needed. Add in your spouse, maybe kids, or roommates and the shoe pile can grow on its own! We started thinking about ways to organize our shoes and want to share what we’ve discovered with you. We built a Pinterest board with many clever, sleek, and good-looking ideas! Read about four of our favorites below. Follow 3M Half Marathon on Pinterest and decide for yourself when you visit our “Organize Your Running Shoes” board.

Under the bed

Various plastic containers store pairs of shoes under a bed as an example of different ways to organize your running shoes. Click on the image's link to visit 3M Half Marathon's Pinterest page for more ideas.

Unless you already have drawers under your bed, chances are you have unused space. Put this location to work! We pinned several ideas for different ways to organize your running shoes under your bed. Keep your drawer on wheels so it’s easier to pull out and push back in. This is a great option if your shoes are strewn about all over the bedroom.

On the wall

5 pair of running shoes are tucked into a hand-built wooden rack that hangs from the wall. It's an example of different ways to organize your running shoes. Click on the image's link to visit 3M Half Marathon's Pinterest page for more ideas.

Use the vertical space of your walls in your garage, entrance area, or laundry room. Just like the drawer under your bed option, this is a great way to save space. It gets shoes off the ground and prevents them from becoming a tripping hazard. Building a rack or two in your garage is your best bet if your running shoes need to dry off and air out.

In your closet

Stacks of space-saving plastic containers are filled with shoes. It's an example of different ways to organize your running shoes. Click on the image's link to visit 3M Half Marathon's Pinterest page for more ideas.

Do you have a hill of shoes on your closet floor? One of our Pins provides 20 different shoe storage ideas for your closet. Organize your running shoes and get them off the ground. The hang-down design ensures that you can always find the left and right shoes when you need them. This tactic is ideal if you live in an apartment.

DIY rack

Two different DIY racks that provide examples of different ways to organize your running shoes. Click on the image's link to visit 3M Half Marathon's Pinterest page for more ideas.

This might be our favorite because there are so many different ways that the rack can be customized! Let your imagination run wild, unless you buy a rack that comes with instructions. You can build it to your desired height, move it to where you want, and customize its additional functionality. Use the top spot for plants, put key hooks on the side, or add a corkboard so you can pin photos. So many ideas! 

There are so many different ways to organize your running shoes. Our “Organize Your Running Shoes” Pinterest board has something for everyone. We know you’ll find something that fits your just as well as your running shoes! Is there a specific way you currently organize your running shoes? Let us know in the 3M Half Marathon Facebook Group or on Twitter.