How Far Should I Run in 30 Minutes? (Targets | Miles | Distance)

Among the many benefits of running – and arguably the most important to runners – is that you’ll feel better. And not just physically! Running can actually help your mental state, too.

Along with feeling stronger, you’ll likely experience what’s called a “runner’s high.” Even 10 minutes of aerobic exercise can cause your brain to release a ton of endorphins, the chemical responsible for a little mood boost. Over time, you might find that your overall mood is elevated, a big help for depression and anxiety.

The benefits of running for 30 minutes do not end there. You’ll enjoy the perks at bedtime with better sleep, both in quality and quantity. Related to that is the improved recovery time you’ll experience. Because you are less likely to overuse muscles when you keep your run to 30 minutes, you will find that you’re able to recover quickly and get back out there.

Long-term, there are significant benefits. Running can be a habit that leads to an overall healthier lifestyle. With that lifestyle change, you’ll make choices that help you live a longer, healthier, and happier life. Ready to begin running for a workout? Then lace up those running shoes and let’s get warmed up.

How Far Should I Run in 30 Minutes?

How Far Should I Run in 30 Minutes

The answer to how far you should run will depend greatly on your experience level. For a beginner, a good first goal is to hit a 12-minute mile. Doing so would equal a little more than two miles.

Once you hit that benchmark, you can work up to faster miles. A good secondary goal is a 10-minute mile. For longer term goals, you can decide to work up to running 5k in 30 minutes, which would equal about a 9:40 mile.

How Many Days Per Week Should I Run?

How Many Days Per Week Should I Run

Deciding how many days to run will depend on your goals. For a general fitness goal, three to four days per week is a good start. However, if you plan to train for a marathon, for example, you might work up to running six days per week. According to research from Copenhagen City Heart, two and a half total hours per week was found to have the highest number of benefits in terms of improving overall longevity. That can be broken down into 30 minutes per day, five days a week for maximum benefit.

How Many Rest Days I Need When Running?

How Many Rest Days I Need When Running

According to a study from the American Council on Exercise (ACE), the number of rest days that you need depends on how strenuous the workout is. At least one rest day per week is important for muscle recovery and will help reduce your risk of injury. On running rest days, consider doing some cross-training for recovery. This will help build and balance your muscles. Some popular options include strength training, yoga, or Pilates.

How Many Minutes of Running Should I do?

Minutes of Running

Depending on your goals and your experience level, the minutes you spend running will vary. Are you training for a 5k or a half marathon? If so, a 30-minute run might not be enough. Will you be doing any strength training afterwards? It may be best to save most of your energy for that portion of your workout. 

To start with, aim for between 20 and 30 minutes. That being said, it will depend on you and how you are feeling. If you’re having a day that you feel great, you might find yourself ready for another ten minutes. Listening to your body is crucial.

Does Running Help with Weight Loss?

Does Running Help with Weight Loss

Short answer: yes! One reason running will help with weight loss is the fact that it will contribute to a caloric deficit. By maintaining a deficit in your calories and your nutrition, you’re bound to lose weight. It’s also a great way to burn that excess fat, which will end up helping you run faster and for longer.

A study from Harvard Health Publishing on running statistics can help you calculate just how quickly you may lose weight. For a 185 pounds person that runs a 12-minute mile, they will burn around 426 calories. 

Running Training Plan by Fitness Level

Running Training Plan by Fitness Level

Depending on your fitness level, your running training plan will change. While you might be starting as a beginner, knowing what you should aim for as your next goal will help motivate you to continue with your training:

  • Beginners: If your fitness level is lacking, fear not! It is never too late to begin a running training plan. For running novices, planning to run for between 20 and 30 minutes is a great start. For speed, try to keep a 12-minute mile. If you keep this training up for three to four days per week, you’ll find yourself experiencing the running benefits and soon you’ll be ready to level up.
  • Intermediate: Amp up your running by adding more time. At the intermediate level, try to get in 30 to 40 minutes of running, keeping the pace of a 10-minute mile. Train for four to five days per week and you’ll soon be ready to run 5ks and other running events.
  • Advanced: When you’ve finally worked up to the advanced level, you should set a goal to run for 45 to 60 minutes. Work towards an eight-minute mile for around six days per week. This will get you training for longer running events.


Running is an excellent way to achieve your fitness goals. If you plan on adding running to your workout, always remember to stay hydrated, listen to your body, and always rest at least one day a week.

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