How to become a runner, even if you're not one right now

In our opinion, becoming a runner is one of the best things you can do for your body. It’s an incredibly effective form of cardio, and allows you to choose between long-distance or HIIT sprint training; treadmill, track, or trail; or a mix of all of the above! It’s also free (major bonus) and you don’t need any special equipment to start—just comfortable running shoes and high-performance clothes you can move in.

Learn the steps to becoming a runner in no time

But running is also one of those workouts that can feel especially intimidating if you’re not already a runner. Workouts like yoga, Pilates, or spin are led by an experienced instructor and offer classes for beginners. But new runners often don’t know where to start. So with that in mind, we partnered with the running experts at Nike to bring you a workout plan that will help you to become a runner in 10 days. Whether you’re completely new to the sport or just need to jumpstart your love of running again, that’s what this exercise plan is all about. (Plus, you can shop this look from Nike at the end of this post…)

Learn how to become a runner in just a week and a half

It definitely takes strong will and determination to commit yourself to a workout plan for 10 days in a row. But if you can stick with it, by the end of the 10 days going on regular runs will become a habit, as well as new favorite workout. Plus, the fact that each day’s workout is only 30 minutes makes this plan entirely doable. This program emphasizes consistency and commitment over fast times or super long distances. It’s all about sticking with it, and jumpstarting new healthy habits!

Nike workout chart to becoming a runner in 10 days

As you can see, this plan starts off slow, gradually increasing in difficulty each day. Alternating between sprints and longer distances will keep you from burning out. You can start the plan on any day of the week you like. You can plan to have one of the rest days (Day 4 and 9) coincide with the weekend to give yourself a little bit of a break. Or, if it’s harder for you to fit in a full workout during the workweek, you can have your rest days land Monday through Friday, and then log in heavier workouts when you have more time on the weekend.

One of our biggest tips for staying motivated is having running shoes and clothes you love wearing. The Nike Free RN Flyknit you see here is designed specifically for running. Unlike a lot of stiff and bulky sneakers, it moves with your foot for a more comfortable and natural running experience. The brand new flexible outsole on all of the Nike Free shoes actually expands and contracts with your foot for more dynamic movement. And the single-seam upper part of the shoe makes it fit like a sock. They’re seriously the most comfortable running shoes we have ever worn. Plus, they’re chic enough that you will want to wear them to a post-workout brunch or out on the town while you do errands. One major perk about the Nike Free shoes is that you can try them out for 30 days and get a full refund if you’re not satisfied.

Nike's plan to become a runner in just 10 days

Become a better runner with this workout plan from Nike

Learn how to become a runner in no time

The other pieces in this all-black running outfit include a fun “Nike Runs This” printed tank, a Nike Pro Classic Padded Graphic Sports Bra with removable padding, and Nike Power Speed Capris with a compression fit and a zip pocket in the back center.

Shop all of the pieces in this post below…

So, we’d love to know… 

Are you going to try this workout plan with us?

And which pair of Nike Free running shoes are your favorite?

Let us know in the comments below.

XO Team LC

This post is proudly sponsored by… 

Photos: Jessi Burrone Photography for
  • I love running, but I often get into a slump. This is a great way to reboot.

    Morning Lux

  • I am definitely not a runner. I have tried on and off but I always try again. I’m definitely going to try out this guide today at the gym. Thanks for posting!!

    Meghan |

  • 5 minute sprint?? That sounds awful…

  • Love this! I’m just starting my marathon training after a (far too long) hiatus from running and this is just what I need to get back into my routine!

    xo Bree

  • I’m really excited to start running again and this guide is perf!

    xo, Carey

  • Sophie Louise Buckle

    I would love to be a runner!! So I may have to give this a go. I have such admiration for people who get out and run!!

    Sophie –

  • Kari Guastella

    I love my Nike flyknits. They are so comfy!

  • Michèle

    you look fit! and I love that workout gear

  • Ilah Ekamper

    Such a lovely and helpful post! I was actually just thinking about starting to run again! You look very fit by the way! Xx


  • Brittney Murray

    Last summer was when I started jogging every morning. I just increased the time I “practiced” everyday till I built my endurance. That summer i went from 240 Lbs to 190 Lbs and plan to get down to 160 Lbs by Christmas 🙂

    Thanks for sharing

  • Indigo and Mouse

    I will definitely be trying this out! I can barely do 5k without feeling like i’m going to pass out!

  • I’ve been trying to become a runner for over 6 months now and this was really helpful. I am going to try it out starting next week.
    Eclectic Elite

  • I love to run…and i love that anyone can be a runner!!

  • I’ll have to try this out- I need to get back into running haha!


  • Oooh! I’m working through a “Couch to 5K” plan, but I love that this one incorporates some exercises for speed, too. Maybe I’ll give it a go when I finish my current plan!

  • Caroline B. Wertz

    I’ve been a runner for 14 years and started for all the reasons you mention. And started as you recommend. I was fairly slow the first 2 years, concentrating on building up my distance, but my speed eventually and comfortably crept up over the other years. If you keep running, you’ll build a fitness foundation that stays in place even when you take breaks (like I did for a year when I was preggers/had a baby). However, I have a nit to pick. Nike Free’s are minimalist shoes-that is, they have minimal cushioning. I don’t know any other runners who wear them except on a track (because the track is soft). They can really expose you to jarring, bone fractures and other injuries. My advice-stay away from them unless you are on a track-for concrete and asphalt, go with full cushioning (like Nike Pegasus) and, if on a trail, go with a trail shoe. And always buy your starter pair of running shoes from a real running store to make certain you’ve got the right fit and type (ex: they will do a gait analysis to determine if you over-pronate and recommend appropriate shoes for that). Anyone can become a runner, but don’t be the beginner who immediately gets injured and thinks running just isn’t for them just because you’ve got the wrong shoes.

  • Jessica Johnson

    I’m interested in participating in a 5K that is coming up in September, but intimidated because I am not a runner. Thank you for providing tips on how to begin easing into running. I’m going to start the outlined schedule this weekend 🙂
    xo, Jessica