12-Week Fitness Plan

Get Fit

Want to improve your health? Need to lose weight? This activity plan for beginners, combining running and strength and flexibility workouts, will get you into the habit of regular exercise in 12 weeks.

The plan is structured but flexible enough to allow you to fit the exercise sessions around your other weekly commitments.

Before starting each week, plot in your calendar what days and times you'll be exercising. This will help you stick to the plan. Don't forget to factor in 1 rest day per week (on a day of your choosing).

All you need to get started is any type of MP3 or digital media player, or smartphone, and a pair of running shoes.

Get ready by downloading the Couch to 5K running, 5K+ and Strength and Flex podcasts and print the 10-minute workout series.

Week 1

  • Day 1: Couch to 5K – run 1 (workout duration: 20 minutes)
  • Day 2: Strength and Flex – level 1 (36 minutes)
  • Day 3: Couch to 5K – run 1
  • Day 4: Strength and Flex – level 1
  • Day 5: Couch to 5K – run 1
  • Day 6: Strength and Flex – level 1

Include a rest day

Week 2

  • Day 1: Couch to 5K – run 2 (20 minutes)
  • Day 2: Strength and Flex – level 2 (37 minutes)
  • Day 3: Couch to 5K – run 2
  • Day 4: Strength and Flex – level 2
  • Day 5: Couch to 5K – run 2
  • Day 6: Strength and Flex – level 2

Include a rest day

Week 3

  • Day 1: Couch to 5K – run 3 (20 minutes)
  • Day 2: Strength and Flex – level 3 (36 minutes)
  • Day 3: Couch to 5K – run 3
  • Day 4: Strength and Flex – level 3
  • Day 5: Couch to 5K – run 3
  • Day 6: Strength and Flex – level 3

Include a rest day

Week 4

  • Day 1: Couch to 5K – run 4 (16 minutes)
  • Day 2: Strength and Flex – level 4 (45 minutes)
  • Day 3: Couch to 5K – run 4
  • Day 4: Strength and Flex – level 4
  • Day 5: Couch to 5K – run 4
  • Day 6: Strength and Flex – level 4

Include a rest day

Week 5

  • Day 1: Couch to 5K – run 5, workout 1 (16 minutes)
  • Day 2: Strength and Flex – level 5 (44 minutes)
  • Day 3: Couch to 5K – run 5, workout 2 (16 minutes)
  • Day 4: Strength and Flex – level 5
  • Day 5: Couch to 5K – run 5, workout 3 (25 minutes)
  • Day 6: Strength and Flex – level 5

Include a rest day

Week 6

Include a rest day

Week 7

Include a rest day

Week 8

  • Day 1: Couch to 5K – run 8 (33 minutes)
  • Day 2: 10-minute cardio workout
  • Day 3: Couch to 5K – run 8
  • Day 4: 10-minute upper arms workout
  • Day 5: Couch to 5K – run 8
  • Day 6: 10-minute abs workout

Include a rest day

Week 9

  • Day 1: Couch to 5K – run 9 (35 minutes)
  • Day 2: 10-minute bums legs and tums workout
  • Day 3: Couch to 5K – run 9
  • Day 4: 10-minute firm butt workout
  • Day 5: Couch to 5K – run 9
  • Day 6: 10-minute full body toning workout

Include a rest day

Week 10

  • Day 1: 5K+ Stepping stone (30 minutes)
  • Day 2: 10-minute legs, bums and tums workout
  • Day 3: Stepping stone
  • Day 4: 10-minute full body toning workout
  • Day 5: Stepping stone
  • Day 6: 10-minute firm butt workout

Include a rest day

Week 11

  • Day 1: 5K+ Stamina (35 minutes)
  • Day 2: 10-minute cardio workout
  • Day 3: 5K+ Stamina
  • Day 4: 10-minute upper arms workout
  • Day 5: 5K+ Stamina
  • Day 6: 10-minute abs workout

Include a rest day

Week 12

  • Day 1: 5K+ Speed] (16 minutes)
  • Day 2: Strength and Flex – level 5
  • Day 3: 5K+ Speed
  • Day 4: Strength and Flex – level 5
  • Day 5: 5K+ Speed
  • Day 6: Strength and Flex – level 5

Include a rest day

Well done on completing the 12-week plan! You can continue using 5K+ and Strength and Flex level 5 (no intro version) to keep your activity levels up!

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