"Here's the good word dire
"Here's the good word directly from Honda..
This should all be in your owners manual, that is unless you bought the motor in a back alley somewhere at a really really good price...
If you don't have the manual get one and read it more than once. Most 4 strokes end up as junk because owners fail to follow the recommended service "to the letter". A 4 stroke is not forgiving the way a 2 stroke is - neglect it and it will quickly turn into a few hundred pounds of scrap metal...
Break-in period: 10 hours
Break-in operation allows the moving parts to wear-in evenly and thus ensures proper performance and longer outboard motor service life.
First 15 minutes:
Run the outboard motor at trolling speed. Use the minimum amount of throttle opening necessary to operate the boat at a safe trolling speed.
Next 45 minutes:
Run the outboard motor up to a maximum of 2,000 to 3,000 rpm or 10 %to 30 %throttle opening.
Next 60 minutes:
Run the outboard motor up to a maximum of 4,000 to 5,000 rpm or 50 % to 80 % throttle opening. Short bursts of full throttle are acceptable but do not operate the motor continuously at full throttle.
Next 8 hours:
Avoid continuous full throttle operation (100 % throttle opening). Do not run the outboard motor at full throttle for more than 5 minutes at a time.
For boats that plane easily, bring the boat up on plane then reduce the throttle opening to the specified break-in settings called out above."
A "professional" is someone who gets paid for their work - it doesn't necessarily mean they are good at it :)