Couch to 5k

Running for Beginners : The Couch to 5k Beginners’ Running Plan

At Running Ibiza we believe strongly that running is an activity for everyone – after all, everyone is built for running!  We have seen at first hand, the positive impact running has on the lives of people of every age, shape, size & gender.  But we know that for beginners, running can be very daunting, especially if you want to start running at 40, at 50 etc, or are interested in running for weight loss.  At Running Ibiza we have lots of experience of running with beginners (which included us, at one point!), which means we can gently (but firmly!) teach you the techniques & motivate you to be able to run 5k without stopping

If you already know you want to start running and get the benefits for yourself, sign up now for our Couch to 5K Beginners’ Running Plan.  However if you’re still not sure it’s for you, read on…

Everybody knows that keeping fit & active is good for you, but why choose running?  Here are our Top 10 Reasons to run:

  1. Physical health benefits (too numerous to list here… Google it!)
  2. Mental health benefits (it triggers the release of lovely serotonins in your brain and gets you out into the Vitamin D-giving sunshine)
  3. Increase in self-confidence(a wonderful side effect from 1 and 2 above)
  4. Sustained weight loss, without dieting (here at Running Ibiza we eat fairly healthily, but we eat BIG PORTIONS and we love our G&Ts and wine!!)
  5. Inclusive (you don’t need any technical skills or specialist equipment, other than a proper pair of running trainers & a sports bra for ladies)
  6. Time effective (you can run to and from your own front door, and you burn more calories per hour than any other exercise)
  7. Cost effective (no gym membership fees & the only equipment you need is that pair of proper running trainers/sports bra)
  8. Convenience (You can integrate it into your life and get to places quicker! Need to pop to the bank/post office/meet a friend for coffee? It’s too far to walk but the parking’s a nightmare?  Run there!)
  9. Flexible & portable (you can run when you want, for as long as you want. Wherever you travel to, pack your trainers and you can run!)
  10. Sociable (join a club and make friends you can run with)

Running Ibiza

Running Ibiza’s founder Donna has been running for 17 years and is a qualified UK Athletics Run Leader. She has completed over 200 races including 4 marathons and 40 half-marathons. However, until she was 33, Donna didn’t run at all and was overweight. As a child she swam a lot, but she gave that up at 16 and did little else for the next 17 years, other than a lot of very low impact gym classes. She first tried running after her daughter was born, and the first time she went out she ran for 10 minutes and had to stop 3 times. It wasn’t until a few years later, when she followed a plan, that she was able to run consistently – and she’s been running (and 2 dress sizes smaller) ever since!
So, running changed her life (corny but true!) and now she really wants to help others who would like it to change theirs too, or who simply want to start running in order to get fitter. You can read the testimonials below to hear the positive impact running has had on the lives of others.

Running for Beginners: Couch to 5k

Running for Beginners : Beginners and Coach on Beach in Ibiza‘Couch to 5k’ is a beginners’ running plan.  It was developed by a new runner, Josh Clark, who wanted to help his 50-something mum get off the couch and start running, too.  Taking up running can seem like a scary prospect, especially if you feel out of shape or unfit. When first trying to get into exercise, we can often overdo it, feel defeated and give up when we’re just getting started.  ‘Couch to 5k’ is designed for absolute beginners, and it works because it starts with a mix of running and walking, to gradually build up your fitness and stamina.

We will track your progress during each session and keep you motivated to reach the goal of running 5k (or 30 minutes) without stopping.  Progress is individual but you can expect to be able to run 5k (or 30 minutes) without stopping after 9 weeks, as long as you follow the plan each week.

Training 1 to 1

The 1 to 1 training plan is made up of 3 sessions per week for 9 weeks.  You can choose to run 1, 2 or all 3 of the weekly sessions with us, dependent on your self-motivation levels/budget.  If you decide to run some of the weekly sessions by yourself, we will provide you with the plan to follow, and encourage & support you remotely.  However, it will be your responsibility to follow the plan in between our sessions – you will not achieve the goal of running 5k (or 30 minutes) without stopping after 9 weeks if you don’t 🙁

All sessions will take place at a location convenient for you, because we want to make it as easy as possible for you to stick to the plan!

Group Training

If you would prefer the comradeship of running with others, you can join our 9 week group training programme in Marina Botafoch.  The next group will start on 18th October 2021 and will finish in the week before Christmas.  There will be 3 training sessions per week for 9 weeks: every Monday, Wednesday and Friday.  The sessions will last approximately 45 minutes each.  To join you will need to sign up at the start of the programme.  There will be a maximum of 6 people in the group.

The October programme is available at a special price of €100 for the total programme of 27 group sessions.  If you are unable to make any of the 3 sessions each week you will need to make up the missing sessions in your own time, in order to keep up with the programme (we will let you know what you need to do for each missed session).

Take a look at our FAQ section , which includes a lot more information to answer the more detailed questions you might have – or get in touch & we’ll answer your questions in person!


Costs for the 9 week programme of private 1 to 1 training sessions are:

  • €270 for 9 x 45 minute sessions (1/week) (€30/session)
  • Or buy 15 sessions & get 3 free: €450 for 18 x 45 minute sessions (2/week) (€25/session)
  • Or buy 18 sessions & get 9 free: €540 for 27 x 45 minute sessions (3/week) (€20/session)

If you find you need more than 9 weeks to be able to run 5k (or 30 minutes) without stopping, you can continue sessions for an additional 3 weeks at the same ‘per session’ cost you have already signed up for.

If you would like to share the sessions with a friend, contact us to discuss.

Cost for the 9 week programme of group training sessions is €100.  You must sign up for the total course at the start of the course.

If you will not be in Ibiza for 9 consecutive weeks but want to buy a group of sessions to kick-start your Couch to 5k training, contact us to discuss.
All costs are inclusive of IVA.

Sign Up for Couch to 5K Here

Use the booking form to reserve your place or contact us to discuss your requirements.

I hadn’t run in over 2 years (since having my youngest son) and I was dreading the thought of trying to get fit. Donna was a revelation!  She encouraged me to join her lunchtime running group and had the patience to take me from that first laborious and really tough jog to being able to run 5k without stopping, and enjoy it. Along the way she taught me techniques to help my running and to understand the positive impact it could have on my life. Her relaxed and motivating approach was great – it helped me to stay focused and appreciate the progress I was making.

It feels weird saying it, but starting running has really changed my life – I now run 5k home from work at least 3 times a week.  It feels like part of my normal routine and the time I get running is ‘me’ time that I relish and appreciate.


Emma, 36 (London)

I can’t thank Donna enough for suggesting I try the Couch to 5k training programme. At aged 66 and not having done any running for over 30 years,  the challenge was daunting.

I honestly thought I’d give up before the end, but I surprised myself that I felt no inclination to do that – more a confidence that I would get there.

Donna coached me throughout with inspiration and gentle encouragement. Without her I’d still be on the Couch!  Many thanks Donna.

Peter, 66 (Ibiza & Farnham)

Donna encouraged me to get back into running after having a baby and returning to work full time.  Our weekly lunchtime runs started slowly, allowing me to gain fitness and confidence, to the point where I got back to enjoying running for my physical and mental health.  It’s the only exercise I can fit into my life currently, so I cherish it and know when I don’t run I’m not as happy.

Donna is patient and considerate, helping beginners increase their stamina slowly but also pushing and encouraging them to run further and faster.

Since running with Donna I’ve completed 3 x 5km and 1 x 10km races – not bad for a 45 year old mum!

Brigid, 45 (London)

Donna has been so motivational!  In the past I would have gone for the occasional run, only ever a couple of miles and always a real chore.  Running with Donna on a weekly basis made me realise I was capable of so much more than I realised; she encouraged me to continually challenge myself and was always there to support me in achieving it.  Over a period of months my running improved so much, and I was able to complete a half-marathon in September 2018, something I never imagined I would do!

The biggest change has been in my attitude towards running, it’s no longer something I dread but a time I enjoy, and great for clearing my head!  No longer living in the same country as Donna, I have been inspired to continue running and now go several times a week as it makes such a positive difference to my general mood.  Feeling so much fitter is also an added bonus!  Thank you Donna for showing me a great way of relieving stress, as well as a new hobby which I can enjoy anywhere I go!

Genevieve, 23 (Newcastle)

Donna is truly an inspiration. She makes running social, effortless and fun – 3 adjectives I never thought I’d use to describe it!  I came back to work after Maternity Leave feeling quite unfit and looking for a way to fit some exercise into the very busy daily routine of being a mum to 2 kids and managing a hectic job – running at lunchtime with Donna and a few other colleagues was the perfect solution. She really inspired me through those initial, very tough runs and got me to a place where I felt more comfortable in my ability to run a short distance, eventually bettering my 5k time at every race I participated in.

Even today, after she’s moved to Ibiza, I can still hear her voice in my head when I go for a run. Donna makes running fun – I just wish she was still here for me to continue running with!!

Archana (London)