• Sunday, May 5, 2024
  • 12 Kilometers (7.46 miles)
  • Spokane, Washington
  • 48th Running

Training Program

This information courtesy of Providence Health Care, Bloomsday's Official Health Care Sponsor

The most successful training program is one that is properly designed. Your training program must balance a progressive training schedule with rest. By following the principles of proper frequency, intensity, and duration, you will learn to train at the level which is best for you.


Frequency refers to the number of days per week that you will train. At least three and up to five sessions each week is recommended for the best results. Injuries are more likely to occur when exercising six to seven times each week. Less than three times each week is not likely to produce the results you want. However, any amount is better than no training at all if you plan to participate in Bloomsday.


Intensity refers to how hard you are exercising. This is measured by how fast your heart is beating. The heart rate at which you will exercise is known as your TARGET HEART RATE (THR). Your THR will be in the range of 60-85% of your heart rate reserve. Heart rate reserve takes into account your resting pulse to figure out your THR. The following guidelines will help you to determine at which THR range you should begin:

  • 50-65% Sedentary Lifestyle -- no regular exercise.
  • 60-75% Moderately Fit -- exercises one or two times a week, very recently began a regular exercise program, or exercises for less than 20 minutes per exercise session.
  • 70-85% Very Fit -- exercises aerobically three or more times a week for at least 20 minutes and has been doing so for at least three months consistently.

Please read carefully the section titled "Learn About Your Heart Rate (Pulse)" and use the chart to determine your THR.

Remember: When your body adapts to the stress of exercise, adding a slight additional stress is necessary to achieve additional results. Therefore, very gradually increase your THR up to 85% (there is no need to go beyond 85%; it may only hinder your efforts). Spend several weeks at each THR range before increasing.


To derive aerobic training benefits, you should work up to at least 15-20 minutes of exercise while maintaining your THR. Spend five minutes gradually getting up to your THR (warm-up) and five minutes gradually decreasing from your THR after the exercise (cool down). Never abruptly stop exercising.


This information courtesy of Benjamin Howie, MD
Providence Orthopedics & Sports Medicine

About Dr. Howie:

Board certified in Sports Medicine and Family Medicine, Dr. Howie offers comprehensive care to athletes and patients seeking to live more active lifestyles.  His clinical interests include acute and overuse musculoskleletal injuries, activity promotion and ultrasound-guided procedures.  He enjoys adventuring in the Inland Northwest outdoors with his wife and 3 children.  He is dedicated to keep Spokane moving!