One of the most popular training programs today is the Couch to 5 Kilometre program, also known as C25K. Thousands of people from all across the globe have followed the program since it was first introduced in 1996. The C25K program proves that running doesn’t have to be time-consuming, tedious or painful.

An Introduction

Running for the first time can be a daunting experience. More often than not beginners burn out too quickly or soon injure themselves because they push too hard, too soon. The C25K program is specifically designed guide new runners through a progressive program of walking and running to unlock your true athletic potential.

There are many training programs out there for people who want to make a positive change to their life. But the best thing about the 5K training program is that it’s designed for beginners who don’t know where to start. It’s also recommended for people who have not been physically active for a long period of time. Cto5K is perfect if you want a training program you can control and progress at a comfortable pace.

Each session in the 5km training program initially alternates between walking and jogging. It’s designed to avoid injuries by not pushing your body too hard and gradually build up stamina until you’re able to run 5km without stopping.

Training Schedule

The program only takes nine weeks to turn a ‘couch potato’ into a confident 5k runner. It follows a comfortable pace; gradually increasing the time spent running and reducing the time spent walking. Even if you haven’t exercised for a while, it’s a pace that will not leave you feeling exhausted at the end of each training session. Some people even call it a jogging or walking program because it allows you to change the pace according to your fitness level.

The Couch to 5K training program requires you to run at least three times a week, but it’s not strict. If there are times where you need to skip a session because you have no time, that’s fine. If you miss a week or a day of training then you can easily redo parts of the schedule. If you feel that you are progressing too fast, then you can repeat a week. There are no strict rules, which is what that people love most about the C25K program.

Running timeWalking time

Week 1

Day 1 60s 90s | x8
Day 2 60s 90s | x8
Day 3 60s 90s | x8

Week 2

Day 4 90s 2 mins | x6
Day 5 90s 2 mins | x6
Day 6 90s 2 mins | x6

Week 3

Day 7 90s 90s 3 mins 3 mins | x2
Day 8 90s 90s 3 mins 3 mins | x2
Day 9 90s 90s 3 mins 3 mins | x2

Week 4

Day 10 3 mins 90s 5 mins 2.5 mins 3 mins 90s 5 mins
Day 11 3 mins 90s 5 mins 2.5 mins 3 mins 90s 5 mins
Day 12 3 mins 90s 5 mins 2.5 mins 3 mins 90s 5 mins

Week 5

Day 13 5 mins 3 mins 5 mins 3 mins 5 mins
Day 14 8 mins 5 mins 8 mins
Day 15 20 mins

Week 6

Day 16 5 mins 3 mins 8 mins 3 mins 5 mins
Day 17 10 mins 3 mins 10 mins
Day 18 25 mins

Week 7

Day 19 25 mins
Day 20 25 mins
Day 21 25 mins

Week 8

Day 22 28 mins
Day 23 28 mins
Day 24 28 mins

Week 9

Day 25 30 mins
Day 26 30 mins
Day 27 30 mins

Time Requirements

Each Couch25K session often last for up to 20 to 30 minutes and over time will get rid of any excess weight, tone muscles, and build stamina. It is important to space out the training sessions throughout the week in order to allow the body to rest and recover in between the sessions. The easiest way to follow the program is to allocate certain days of the week for the runs and try your best to stick to them.

Rest days are also important. Having a rest day in between running sessions will lower the risks of injury and at the same time transform you into a better runner. During the start of the nine-week program, the goal is to improve the distance and time spent running, instead of your pace.


The best companion to the C25K program is Runmore. The app guides you through each day of the program and provides you with clear audio instructions so you can keep your phone in your pocket and focus on the running. Runmore then tracks your weekly progress along the way, guiding you to that incredible 5K finish line.

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