3 Day A Week Run Training Plan

Not many people know about the 3 day a week Run Training Plan. In fact I only stumbled upon it in the last year or so. The majority of training plans will recommend you run upwards of 4 or 5 days a week but some peoples bodies ( like mine ) initially just couldn’t handle it. In fact even at present where I’m running 30 miles a week I still try and get those miles accomplished in only 3 runs.

The Why & How?

One of my biggest issues was always struggling to recover from my running. Even on short run days ( 3 miles ) I would wake up the next morning with sore feet, tight hammies and aching calf muscles.

It was only when I started adding 1-2 strength sessions ( particularly calves ) a week that the next days recovery seemed a little easier. Click Here. to see what workouts helped me relieve pain and muscle soreness.

sore calf muscles

Here is a look at my basic 3 day a week running plan.

3 day a week running phase 1 (1)

Whilst this plan focusses on Tuesday, Thursday & a weekend run it could easily be done on different days. For example your long run could be on a Friday, then your other 2 shorter runs could be Monday & Wednesday. The schedule is very flexible and you can work it any way you please.

Rest Days

The important part of this plan like most plans is Rest Days. Initially rest days are when you take the day off completely. They could be synchronized with visits to a massage therapist, visits to your local cryo facility or chiropractor. they are just that, days off. Just get the 3 runs in and start seeing how your body is feeling on these days.

Cross Training

Once you’re comfortable with the 3 run days in the week you can start looking to add in some cross training. Cross training is a great way to add to your endurance without risking adding more running to your schedule. I personally like to get on my Mountain Bike or even an indoor spin bike. These are great ways to increase your fitness without risking injury. There are  a million other types of cross training you could do. From swimming, to surfing, rock climbing, triathlon etc etc.

Strength Training

I personally detest weight lifting. Standing in the gym for an hour lifting weights is like watching paint dry or grass grow. There are tons and tons of great strength training routines you can do that wont seem like “weight lifting” even though its a big part of it.

It wasn’t until I came to the realization that at 40 years old I was going to have to do strength work if I wanted to carry on running. You see the issue is this. Running doesn’t actually make you any stronger. In fact running breaks down muscle rather than building it up. Have you even seen a bulky professional runner? Nope, they’re small and skinny. Yes running can be used to burn fat BUT it cant be used to build strength. The Strength work is done in the gym so that the muscles don’t break down & result in injuries.

Closing remarks

If you’ve been running for a while now OR you’re new to the sport & you regularly pick up injuries or niggles perhaps its time for you to start looking into the 3 day a week running plan. Ive been using it with huge success now for going on 2 years. I am running close to 30 miles a week using this plan. The key to success though hasn’t been the running. Its been the cross training & strength work. You’ve got to figure out how you can try fit in a workout into as many days in the week as possible. I know life can be tough sometimes but carving out just 30 minutes a day for a workout will make the world of difference for you. Because you know, you really are worth. ( like that cheesy Revlon commercial )

It doesn’t matter whether you’re training for a 5K or a 50K you can use the 3 day a week run Training Plan to not only accomplish your goals but you can crush them. No I don’t think you could win any races on this plan BUT if your end goal is fitness, weight loss or the off PR I know for a fact it can be done.

I wish you the best of luck with all your endeavors & would love your feedback on this article. I’d also like to hear from you what your goals are. please comment & list them below in the comments. Keep running.

Jason.