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The 10 Percent Rule of Running

If You Run, You Absolutely Must Follow the 10 Percent Rule

If you're new to running, but you'd like to sign up for a marathon one day, you'll need to start increasing your mileage. But if you go straight from running 10 miles to 20, you'll not only be tired and sore, but you risk injuring yourself, which prevents you from running altogether. This is where the 10 percent rule comes into play.

The 10 percent rule states: never increase your weekly mileage by more than 10 percent of the previous week. To figure out your current rate of increase, make a note of how many miles you currently run in a week, and add 10 percent to that number; the following week, do the same. The chart below is geared toward a beginning runner who currently runs 10 miles a week but would like to eventually start a marathon-training plan. Keep in mind that the 10 percent rule isn't just for those wishing to race — it can benefit anyone looking to up their mileage!

Amount for 10% Increase Total Weekly Mileage
Week One Starting point 10 miles
Week Two 1 mile 11 miles
Week Three 1.1 miles 12.1 miles
Week Four 1.2 miles 13.3 miles
Week Five 1.3 miles 14.6 miles
Week Six 1.5 miles 16.1 miles
Week Seven 1.6 miles 17.7 miles
Week Eight 1.8 miles 19.5 miles
Image Source: POPSUGAR Photography / Ericka McConnell
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