I wouldn't totally dismiss the idea of browsing though others' code. Even if you don't understand everyhing it might give you a hint on how to structure code. It is also very helpful if you find complete projects just to compile them and get them to run on your computer. Then start modifying them to see what happens and you will soon understand bigger portions of the code and the structure that is behind that particular project. After you have done that with a couple of projects you might start to see patterns that are worth keeping for your own projects.
When I started programming back in the ages it began as dissassembling raw memory and poking around at instructions to see what would happend. Today with Internet and so many projects giving out the actual source code to the entire project I would say that its a gold mine to learn from. Just go in with the mindset that you will not understand half of what's there and that is a perfectly normal feeling. Just start poking around in the code and learn from what happens.