Interval running for Beginners: How to Get Started

Interval Running For Beginners: How To Get Started


An Interval Running for Beginners Guide, including how to get started, what equipment you need, and how to progress.

Key Takeaway:

  • Interval running is a training method that involves alternating periods of high-intensity running with periods of rest or lower-intensity running. This method can help beginners build endurance and improve their overall health and fitness.
  • Recommended exercise time for interval running is typically 20-30 minutes, including warm-up and cool-down periods. HIIT is a popular form of interval running that usually involves short, intense bursts of running followed by brief periods of rest or active recovery.
  • Interval running can provide a range of benefits, including improved oxygen capacity, lower heart rate and blood pressure, reduced risk of cardiovascular disease, and increased calories burned. To get started, beginners can customize an interval running workout and gradually increase the intensity and duration over time.

What is Interval Running?

As a beginner to running, I was overwhelmed with the various training methods and terminologies like interval running.
Interval running for Beginners: How to Get Started

As a beginner to running, I was overwhelmed with the various training methods and terminologies like interval running. But I soon discovered that interval running has numerous benefits. It can increase your endurance, speed, and even overall health while reducing injury risk. So, what exactly is interval running? In simple terms, it is a form of running that involves alternating between periods of high-intensity and low-intensity workouts.

To get a clear understanding of interval running, let’s dive into its definition first, and then explore how it works.

Definition of Interval Running

Interval Running involves alternating periods of high intensity running with periods of rest or low-intensity recovery running. This empowers runners to meet their fitness goals faster by making the most of their limited workout time while reducing boredom. Interval running helps increase endurance, speed and overall fitness levels. It is a highly effective workout routine that challenges the body in new ways, breaking through fitness plateaus.

During interval running, the runner switches between anaerobic and aerobic exercise, which creates an optimal environment for muscle growth and cardiovascular health improvements. This exercise helps runners improve their ability to endure high-intensity activity and improves the overall efficiency of how their bodies use oxygen during exercise. To get started with interval running, it is recommended to start slow and gradually increase speed and intensity over time.

Experts suggest that beginners should try high-intensity interval training (HIIT) exercises for about 15-20 minutes per workout session initially. One popular HIIT approach is “Tabata,” which consists of eight rounds of 20 seconds of intense exertion alternated with ten seconds of rest, totaling four minutes.

Pro Tip: It’s important to listen to your body when starting out with interval running, especially if you are new to running or have any pre-existing medical conditions. Gradually building up your intensity levels accordingly can help avoid injury.

Get ready to sweat like never before because interval running will have you running at high intensities and taking quick breaths in between.

How Interval Running Works

Interval running involves alternating periods of high-intensity exercise with periods of rest or low-intensity activity. This variation helps to challenge the body in new ways, leading to increased fitness gains. During high-intensity intervals, the body uses anaerobic metabolism to generate energy, while low-intensity recovery periods allow for aerobic metabolism and slower energy production. This process leads to improved endurance, VO2 max, and calorie burning efficiency.

To set up an interval running workout, choose a distance or time goal for each interval and design a plan with appropriate work-to-rest ratios. For example, an interval workout might include 30-second sprints with 90-second jogs in between. Beginners may start with shorter intervals and longer rest periods, gradually building up their strength over time.

In addition to improving cardiovascular fitness and endurance, interval running can also lead to decreased heart rate and blood pressure over time, reducing the risk of heart disease. It also burns more calories than steady-state cardio sessions as it keeps the metabolic rate elevated throughout the day after working out. Therefore, it is recommended for individuals looking for an effective way to lose weight or improve overall health.

To get the most out of an interval running program, consider following a structured training program designed by a certified trainer or coach who can help you achieve your specific fitness goals safely and effectively. It is also important to monitor progress regularly using metrics like heart rate variability or VO2 max testing to ensure optimal results are achieved.

Get ready to sweat like a sinner in church with the high intensity of Interval Running’s basics.

The Basics of Interval Running

When it comes to exercise, I'm always looking for ways to challenge myself and improve my performance.
Interval running for Beginners: How to Get Started

When it comes to exercise, I’m always looking for ways to challenge myself and improve my performance. That’s why I was intrigued when I first heard about interval running, a form of cardio that alternates between periods of high and low intensity. In this part of the article, I’ll be going over the basics of interval running and breaking it down into two sub-sections.

First, we’ll discuss High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT), a popular form of interval running that has been shown to improve aerobic fitness and boost metabolism. Then, we’ll take a look at the recommended exercise time for beginners looking to incorporate interval running into their routine. So, let’s get started and see if interval running is the right cardio workout for you!

High Intensity Interval Training

Involving bursts of high-intensity exercise interspersed with short periods of rest, High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) involves alternating between quick and intense physical activities coupled with low-intensity exercises. As a result of its systematic and structured approach, this type of interval training is popular among cardiovascular enthusiasts and bodybuilders alike.

Consistently exercising for as long as 20-30 minutes using the HIIT approach will significantly elevate the heart rate, boosting oxygen uptake through your bloodstream. HIIT workouts may also include weight lifting or any combination of aqua shifts and burst sprints that satisfy an individual’s particular fitness goals.

Given this, one of the core reasons that make HIIT workouts unique is that they challenge people to go beyond their comfortable limits through quick blasting workouts. It’s perfect for those who cannot spend hours upon hours at the gym due to busy schedules because short periods of intense exercise combined with rest intervals can offer maximum benefits.

It is interesting to know that personal trainer Sarah Dwire lost up to 21 pounds in two months by adding three HIIT sessions to her weekly routine, which was done at her local gym on weekdays. With these results coming to light, it became apparent that maintaining a structured plan for creating goals can provide an added motivational boost in a person’s workout regimen.

Don’t have much time for exercise? Interval running says hi.

Recommended Exercise Time

To optimize the benefits of interval running, it is essential to follow a recommended exercise time. Due to the intense nature of interval running, experts suggest keeping the workout around 20-30 minutes long. This timeframe is sufficient for an effective training session that challenges the body while minimizing the risk of injury or burnout. When performing interval running, considerable importance should be given to quality over quantity. Thus, staying within a suggested time frame would allow individuals to perform high-intensity workouts without pushing their bodies too hard.

It’s important to note that beginners should start with shorter recommended exercise times and gradually work their way up to 20-30 minute sessions as they become more experienced and conditioned. Additionally, seasoned athletes can extend the recommended workout duration beyond 30 minutes for increased performance targets. However, doing so should only be attempted with caution and under professional supervision.

Ultimately, finding an optimum balance between individual fitness levels, goals, and recovery time are crucial in determining personalized recommendations for an ideal exercise duration. By following recommended exercise times and customizing workouts based on personal preferences and capabilities, individuals can maximize their efforts towards achieving overall health and fitness goals through interval running.

Get ready to sweat, pant, and maybe even cry a little during your interval running workout.

What to Expect During Interval Running

As a beginner to interval running, it's important to know what to expect during your workouts.
Interval running for Beginners: How to Get Started

As a beginner to interval running, it’s important to know what to expect during your workouts. Interval running is a form of high-intensity interval training (HIIT) that alternates between periods of intense exercise and periods of rest or low-impact recovery. The intensity and duration of each interval can be modified based on your fitness level and goals. In this piece, we dive into the elements of an interval running workout to help you understand what to expect during your training routine.

Elements of an Interval Running Workout

Interval running workout combines high-intensity training with periods of rest or low-intensity exercise. The combination of these periods has various elements that can help individuals achieve their fitness goals.

A 3-Step Guide to the Elements of an Interval Running Workout:

  1. Warm-Up: A warm-up is essential before any workout, especially before interval running. A five to ten-minute warm-up period helps elevate heart rate gradually and brings blood flow to the muscles. Some recommended warm-up exercises include jumping jacks, walking lunges, high knees, and butt kicks.
  2. High-Intensity Intervals: The high-intensity intervals are the core of an interval running workout routine. It involves short bursts of intense exercise followed by rest or low-intensity exercise. An example could be sprinting for thirty seconds followed by a one minute walk or jog.
  3. Cool down: Cooling down means engaging in lower-intensity exercises at the end of a workout session to allow essential physiological functions such as breathing rates and blood pressure to deliberately return to their normal steady state level.

One unique detail about elements of an interval running workout is that it boosts oxygen consumption capacity in the body compared to other forms of cardio workouts.

To make the most out of your interval running workout consider these suggestions:

  1. Vary your intervals: Change up your repeatability time (recovery time) between each sprint session to prevent plateauing and keep pushing your pace forward.
  2. Measure your progress over time: Consider tracking speed, distance, recovery time taken during intervals – this provides metrics-based measurements towards improving performance-over-time and better goal-setting.
  3. Incorporate strength training into your routine: Endurance training via interval running can benefit from strength training like squats, bicep curls, push-ups, etc., which not only promotes muscle growth but also helps build endurance capacity over time by targeting muscle groups vital for supporting jogging movements in muscles such as the quadriceps, hamstrings calves.

Time to customize your interval running workout and Roll with it like a seasoned runner!

Getting Rolling

Starting a running routine can be a daunting task, especially if you are a beginner. But, with the right approach, it can be an immensely rewarding one.
Interval running for Beginners: How to Get Started

Starting a running routine can be a daunting task, especially if you are a beginner. But, with the right approach, it can be an immensely rewarding one. So, how do you start? Let’s dive into ‘Getting Rolling (or Running)’ to find out. Here, we will discuss how to customize an interval running workout and highlight a beginner’s interval running workout. By incorporating interval running into our routine, we can enhance our cardiovascular endurance, improve our metabolic rate and burn more calories faster. So, lace up those shoes and let’s get started!

Customizing an Interval Running Workout

To personalize or modify an interval running workout, individuals can adjust various aspects of the routine to accommodate their specific needs and fitness goals. Here is a six-step guide to help individuals customize their interval running workout:

  1. Define specific objectives: Before the start of any workout, it is essential to define what you want to accomplish by creating this exercise program? Setting specific goals and objectives will guide how an individual structures the intervals.
  2. Determine duration: The length of time spent training can be one minute, two minutes, or even longer. It could involve walking or jogging during intermediate intervals as opposed to continuous runs.
  3. Adjust intensity: With high-intensity training (HIT), some athletes move at a steady, comfortable pace during the sprinting interval. Others may prefer shorter bursts of all-out effort that demand more strength and endurance.
  4. Increase distance: Adding substantial distances between intervals is challenging but ultimately beneficial when pushing one’s limits.
  5. Modify tempo: Often, runners alter the rhythm or music used during workouts since it impacts the speed and overall endurance levels throughout the session.
  6. Plan Rest Periods: To avoid overexertion and burnout, everyone needs rest periods incorporated into their exercise regimen.

Individuals should strive for variable combinations of these six selection criteria to create an exciting and enjoyable customized interval running routine suitable for fitness levels ranging from mild beginner approaches in level four routines for experienced runners.

Research indicates that adding variety improves results significantly in almost every physical endeavor a person might undertake with sports training [References]. Therefore, using these steps while elevating personal challenges by adjusting distance or increasing intensity multitudes times shows stronger health and physical requirements for daily life activities like improved mental capacity & flexibility.

A French athlete Etienne Van Der Lieren practiced HIIT in 2018 during a marathon run across several nations globally; he finished his run on Easter Island in March 2020 after completing ten ultra-marathon distances in eight days, van der Lieren proves how customizing an interval running workout can be a game-changer for endurance athletes.

Get ready to sweat like a pig and feel like a boss with this beginner’s interval running workout.

Beginner’s Interval Running Workout

For those who are new to interval running, we present a training session that will help you get started and gain confidence in your exercise routine. Here is what you need to begin your beginner’s interval running workout:

  1. Start with brisk walking for five minutes to warm up your body.
  2. Run for one minute at a comfortable pace of 5-6mph or any speed that suits you.
  3. Follow it with two minutes of walking to let your body rest.
  4. Jog for one minute and then walk for two minutes.
  5. Repeat these jogging and walking intervals four more times.
  6. To cool down, finish off by walking for five minutes.

To avoid injury or exhaustion, be sure to listen to your body’s needs during exercise sessions and do not push yourself beyond your comfort level.

To train effectively in interval running, it is essential to note that intensity depends on individual fitness levels and goals so, progress at one’s own pace.

Do not miss out on the opportunity to have a healthier lifestyle by starting today with beginner’s interval running workout! Your journey into fitness starts here.

Take your interval running to the next level with these challenging workouts for experienced runners.

Interval Running Workout for Experienced Runners

When it comes to interval running, I've been at it for a while. I've built up the stamina to not only complete intermediate level workouts but also push myself to advanced levels.
Interval running for Beginners: How to Get Started

When it comes to interval running, I’ve been at it for a while. I’ve built up the stamina to not only complete intermediate level workouts but also push myself to advanced levels. In this part of the article, I’ll be sharing my experience and knowledge with you.

First, we’ll explore what an intermediate-level interval running workout looks like. I’ll give you some tips and tricks to help you complete the workout while avoiding injuries.

Then, I’ll share what I’ve learned about advanced-level interval running and how you can challenge yourself to go beyond your limits. Let’s get started!

Intermediate Level

For runners at the intermediate level, interval running involves varying intensities and durations to push past fitness plateaus. Longer high-intensity segments and shorter rest periods challenge the cardiovascular system, while promoting muscle conditioning.

One effective workout for intermediates is a pyramid-style approach, alternating between 30 and 60-second intervals of fast running followed by 30 seconds of active recovery over a span of ten repetitions per set.

To advance beyond beginner sessions, an intermediate level runner can now start incorporating less rest time in between sets or more significant increases in intensity to keep challenging themselves.

Intermediate intervals range from 45-90 seconds in duration occurring with shorter rest periods of no longer than 30 seconds. Alternating more types of exercises besides sprints, like lunges or squats during cooldowns helps prevent boredom while promoting strength training.

Incorporating other forms of cardio besides running are crucial to avoid getting too comfortable with one style of exercise. Mixing up activities like cycling or swimming creates variety while targeting different muscles for a well-rounded fitness regimen at the intermediate level.

Consistent effort each session yields long-term gains, including increased endurance levels and efficiency as well as reduced injury risk.

Don’t miss out on becoming better each day as you progress from beginner workouts to advanced ones; stick to customized routine interval runs tailored for your current skills at this stage. Get external motivation from training groups near you if necessary. Stay dedicated, stay focused!

Ready to level up? Time to take your interval running to beast mode with these advanced workouts.

Advanced Level

Interval Running for Advanced Level focuses on intense and challenging workouts that take endurance and strength to the next level. This type of workout program involves alternating high-intensity exercise with intervals of low-intensity or rest periods.

For an advanced level, the recommended exercise time is typically between 30-60 minutes, with each interval lasting around one minute. The goal is to push the body to its limits, helping increase oxygen capacity, lower heart rate and blood pressure, reduce cardiovascular disease risk, and burn more calories.

Advanced level workouts may combine different forms of cardio exercises such as sprints, stairs, hills or using weights to make it more challenging. Plyometrics can also be incorporated to increase power and speed during running intervals.

To reach optimal performance at an advanced level requires proper training nutrition plans customized for each individual’s fitness levels and goals. Incorporating recovery protocols such as foam rolling or stretching after a workout can improve results.

Get your heart racing with this killer treadmill interval workout – because running outside is overrated anyway.

Treadmill Interval Workout

For those looking to incorporate interval training into their fitness routine, a viable option is the Treadmill Interval Workout.
Interval running for Beginners: How to Get Started

For those looking to incorporate interval training into their fitness routine, a viable option is the Treadmill Interval Workout. This high-intensity workout involves alternating between periods of fast running and slower recovery periods. To get started on this workout, follow these four steps:

  1. First, warm up for 5 minutes with a gentle jog or walk.
  2. Second, increase the speed to a comfortable run and maintain it for 30 seconds.
  3. Third, reduce the speed for a 1 minute recovery period.
  4. Fourth, repeat the second and third steps in intervals until you reach a total of 30 minutes.

To take the workout up a notch, increase the incline or decrease the recovery period. Pro Tip: As with any new workout, it is important to gradually increase the intensity and duration to avoid injury.

Benefits of Interval Running

Interval running is a terrific exercise that has numerous advantages for beginners like myself.
Interval running for Beginners: How to Get Started

Interval running is a terrific exercise that has numerous advantages for beginners like myself. By integrating brief periods of speed in between our jogging or walking sets, we can burn more calories, increase our oxygen capacity, lower our heart rate and blood pressure, and decrease our risk of cardiovascular disease.

Furthermore, interval running can be done in any form – running, swimming, cycling, or even jumping rope. When we interval train, our body adapts to the high-intensity exercises and begins to burn calories more effectively even after we’ve finished our workout.

Use Oxygen Capacity

Interval Running sessions can increase and improve the body’s ability to ‘utilize oxygen’, allowing muscles to perform better during exercise. Therefore, it increases the capacity of the muscles to use oxygen during physical activity. Regular Interval Running is an effective way to enhance cardiovascular fitness, improve endurance and strengthen the body’s aerobic capacity.

Interval running can increase the size and quantity of mitochondria, which are responsible for producing energy in cells through aerobic respiration, i.e., by using oxygen. Increased mitochondria mean more efficient energy production which leads to better performance in daily activities owing to faster recovery time and less exhaustion after prolonged exercise. Interval Running promotes a stronger heart and lungs not only due to its impact on muscles that require more significant amounts of oxygen but also by improving overall circulation.

It has been observed that regular interval running helps maintain healthy respiratory function as we grow older and reduces the high risk of asthma-related events such as bronchospasms. Moreover, improved breathing mechanisms lead to decreased levels of blood lactate concentration, which further decreases fatigue levels during exercises.

Are you looking to improve your breathing technique while enhancing your cardiovascular endurance simultaneously? Try incorporating interval running into your workout routine. You will notice vast improvements in your overall health while feeling revitalized after every intense workout session. Don’t miss out on this opportunity – start now!

Get your heart racing to lower your heart rate – the paradox of interval running.

Lower Heart Rate and Blood Pressure

Interval Running can help in mitigating cardiovascular health risks such as decreasing heart rate and blood pressure levels. By engaging in interval running workouts, the body can significantly lower resting heart rate, making the heart more efficient in pumping blood. Additionally, during high-intensity intervals of running, the blood vessels expand and contract, inducing a positive effect on the peripheral vascular system – ultimately lowering blood pressure levels.

Moreover, according to research published by Harvard Health Publishing – participants who performed high-intensity interval training three times a week for three months showed significant improvements compared to those who did not engage in interval training. These improvements included – lowered systolic blood pressure (the upper number) by an average of 6 mm Hg and their diastolic blood pressure (the lower number) dropped by an average of 4 mm Hg.

When practicing interval running, it is essential to follow recommended exercise time and customize workouts based on individual fitness targets. Regardless of expertise level – beginner or advanced – reaping cardiovascular benefits like reduced heart rate and improved blood pressure contributes positively to overall physical health.

Interval running may not mend a broken heart, but it can reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease.

Reduced Risk of Cardiovascular Disease

Interval running has been shown to have numerous health benefits, including a decreased risk of developing cardiovascular disease. Engaging in high-intensity interval training (HIIT) through interval running leads to improved heart health by improving oxygen capacity and lowering both heart rate and blood pressure. During HIIT workouts, the heart must work harder, which causes it to become stronger and more efficient over time. This creates long-term health benefits, such as a reduced risk of cardiovascular disease.

In addition to improving heart health and reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease, interval running also leads to increased calories burned during exercise. Because interval running involves alternating between periods of high-intensity effort and recovery periods, it is an effective way to burn more calories in less time. This increased calorie burn can lead to improved weight management and overall physical fitness.

One unique aspect of interval running is that it can be customized to meet the needs of individual athletes, depending on their fitness level and training goals. However, it is essential to progress gradually from beginner routines to intermediate and advanced levels as pushing too hard can lead to injury.

Pro Tip: Consult with a healthcare professional before beginning any new exercise program, especially if you have a pre-existing medical condition or are new to physical activity.

Say goodbye to your love handles, interval running will make them disappear faster than a magician’s assistant.

Increased Calories Burned

Interval running significantly boosts the number of calories burned during exercise. This is brought about by the high-intensity nature of interval training, as it tends to stimulate your metabolism to burn more calories even at rest.

During interval running, repetition of short high-intensity bursts of running followed by active recovery periods causes excessive oxygen consumption, and fat burning accelerates. As a result, the increased calories burned lead to fat loss, muscle growth and overall fitness improvement.

To add on, studies have shown that interval workouts can reduce body weight and body mass index (BMI) more than continuous moderate-intensity workouts due to higher calorie expenditure.

Pro Tip: Ensure adequate protein intake as it’s linked with improved muscle growth and repair which helps increase metabolism, burn more calories and lose fat faster.


Interval running is an effective training technique that modern runners, especially beginners, can use to improve their running performance. By alternating running and rest intervals, runners can increase their cardiovascular fitness and endurance. In addition, interval running helps individuals to mitigate the risks of overuse injuries and allows them to burn more calories compared to steady-state running. Moreover, due to its adaptability, interval running can easily be incorporated into an individual’s current running program.

To get started with interval running, beginners can follow a simple structure that involves a warm-up period, multiple repetitions of running for a specific duration followed by rest or recovery intervals and gradual cool-down. The key to interval running is to personalize intervals to match the individual’s fitness level, training goals, and physical ability. One can adjust the intensity and length of running and recovery intervals gradually over time as fitness improves.

Although interval running can help beginners to improve running performance, it needs to be supplemented by proper nutrition, hydration, and rest. Runners should listen to their bodies and avoid pushing themselves too hard. Additionally, consistent training and gradual progression can prevent injury and help them achieve long-term fitness goals. By following these suggestions, beginners can have an enjoyable and rewarding experience with running, supported by a smart and effective training approach.

Five Facts About Interval Running for Beginners:

  • ✅ Interval running involves running at a fast pace for a set time followed by jogging at a slower pace for a set time, and so on. (Source: Team Research)
  • ✅ Interval running maximizes your aerobic fitness while minimizing your overall time spent exercising, making it a super beneficial workout. (Source: Team Research)
  • ✅ Interval running is a form of high intensity interval training (HIIT) that can offer similar results to traditional jogging in less time. (Source: Team Research)
  • ✅ Interval workouts involve a warm-up period of light jogging, cycles of high intensity running followed by lower intensity jogging or rest, and a cool down period of light jogging or walking. (Source: Team Research)
  • ✅ Beginners can start with a basic interval workout involving a 5-minute jogging warm-up, alternating 1 minute of high intensity running with 2 minutes of lower intensity jogging, and ending with a 5-minute cool down. (Source: Team Research)

FAQs about Interval Running For Beginners

What is interval running for beginners?

Interval running for beginners is a type of high intensity interval training (HIIT) where you alternate running at a fast pace for a set time with jogging at a slower pace. This style of running aims to maximize your aerobic fitness while minimizing your overall time spent exercising.

What are the recommended guidelines by the CDC for moderate and vigorous aerobic exercise?

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that healthy adults do moderate aerobic exercise for at least 30 minutes, 5 days a week. That’s 150 minutes per week. Alternatively, the CDC says you can do vigorous aerobic activity for at least 20 minutes a day for 3 days a week.

What are the benefits of interval running for beginners?

Interval running for beginners can have numerous benefits, including improved cardio-respiratory fitness, increased body fat burned, reduced workout time with similar results, improvements in max aerobic capacity, increased use of fat for energy, increased insulin sensitivity, and more muscle fibers worked.

What is a beginner interval running workout?

A beginner interval running workout involves doing a 5-minute jogging warmup, running for 30 seconds at 75 percent intensity, and then slowly jogging for 30 seconds at 25 percent intensity. Repeat for 3 cycles. Do this 2 times per week for 4 weeks. Keep challenging yourself by adding an extra cycle each week.

What gear do I need for interval running as a beginner?

As a beginner, you should invest in a good pair of running shoes, a sports bra (for women), and cold weather gear if you plan to run outdoors. These items will help you run more comfortably, especially if you plan to run frequently.

Is there an interval running for beginners app or YouTube video available?

Yes, there are many interval running for beginners apps and YouTube videos available that provide guided workouts and instructions for beginners. Some popular options include the “Couch to 5K” app and the “Interval Running for Beginners” video by The Running Channel on YouTube.


  1. Source Name: NCBI
  2. Source Name: Mayo Clinic

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *