Couch 2 5k Week 2: Start the Long Walk

For Week 2 of BeneFIT Physical Therapy’s “Couch 2 5k” Series, Brian Ireland, PT, DPT, OCS, Cert MDT, CSCS, CKPT, FMSC, TPI , owner and physical therapist of BeneFIT PT in Chester and Bridgewater, NJ, wanted to share personally how he increases walk time frequencies. Take a sneak peek into Doctor of Physical Therapy Brian Ireland’s world and READ ON! 🔎📖

📝”So one week is in the books! I’m hoping that you have been able to start the Couch to 5k series and you were able to get out there. Again, for now, don’t worry about the distance you are walking. Just focus on actually walking during the times you set aside to go walking.

Remember whatever the days and times you choose, make sure they fall easily into your daily schedule. As we saw in how to make a habit we need to reinforce the habit of exercise by scheduling it during a part of the day that makes sense, isn’t forced, and takes the least amount of time to create.

This week lets focus on the…..Long Walk.

Last week we talked about picking the best days that fit into your schedule and to have one of those days be dedicated to a longer workout day. Ideally, you want this longer duration day to fall on a day that allows you the greatest ease to take the time to complete the longer walk AND happens at a point in the week that you can easily recover the next day.

For these reasons most of my long days fall on Saturday or Sunday.
I prefer Saturday mornings; I’m used to getting up early. The only detractor I have to fight is getting out of bed; not any emails, family commitments, or work deadlines. Morning walks are quiet and I can get lost in my thoughts while I am walking.

Finally, by the time I get back the rest of my family are just getting up so I don’t feel like I missed anything. Then, I get to relax for the rest of the weekend!😎

Now that we have the long walk scheduled for this week, what constitutes a long walk? For this week we suggest you double your mid-week time for the long day.

For example, if you have been walking for 15 minutes each day during the week then this week your long walk should aim for 30 minutes. Again, YOU are in control so base the times off of what you can handle. The goal this early in the program is to create the habit of getting out there….That’s it!

Some Tips

Keep an eye on our social media channels as we will be posting things to help you out along this journey. For example, if you plan on walking outside, check out our upcoming post on 📢 Road Safety 🏃‍♀️ as it is a pet- peeve of mine when I see people walking the wrong way in my town. Be on the lookout for our posts on stretching post walking, and how to properly layer! 🧣🧤👟

If you are starting this program on a treadmill, don’t worry about the distance yet, focus more on the duration that you are walking on the treadmill. The timeframe for the long day is the same regardless of being inside our outside. Keep in mind that the 5k will be outside, so start by having the treadmill set to a hill program right from the get-go! This way the treadmill will increase and decrease it’s incline as if you were walking outside.”


Our physical therapist Brian Ireland provides professional physical therapy to all of his patients. Brian Ireland, pictured above and shown below, helping a patient on the bike at BeneFIT PT.

Depicted below is a row of treadmills at local Chester gym Nitro Flex. Note: picture color effect added for creative inspiration–create variety in your workouts to stay engaged!  😀 At many gyms across NJs, treadmills also offer videos of trails in scenic locations. If only the 3-mile treadmill virtual journey through Hawaii included a fresh coconut and tropical weather! 🥥🍍🏝Luckily many of the 5ks located in Chester, Bridgewater and other nearby NJ areas are scheduled in the Springtime, so nice weather is likely!🌞


Remember, starting any exercise or fitness training is taxing on the body. Before starting any activity you should consult a healthcare professional to ensure you can start the program.

With that in mind, if you have any questions or concerns about starting this walking program, feel free to contact us at our location in Bridgewater (908.203.5200) or Chester (908.879.5700) to schedule a free medical screening with one of our highly trained Doctors of Physical Therapy to ensure you are starting off on the right foot! Throughout this series we are offering free screenings at both locations.

Our physical therapy location is Chester NJ, serving all of Morris County NJ.

⬆️Our Chester location: 179 Route 206, Chester, NJ, 07930.

Our physical therapy location is Bridgewater NJ, serving all of Somerset County NJ.

⬆️ Our Bridgewater location: 479 Union Ave, Bridgewater, NJ, 08807.

We look forward to hearing from you! Got questions? Call or e-mail us at While our clinics are open M-F, the Internet never sleeps! @Benefitptnj is always available, one like, share, instagram, or tweet away! Please share our blog posts with your friends, family, and colleagues. As the old saying goes : knowledge is power! BeneFIT PT NJ aims to share fitness and exercise plans to strengthen our patients and community, inside and out!


Update us on your “Couch 2 5k” journey! 📞📧💻