6.5 km was a step too far?

Graduated from C25K about 10 weeks ago and run X 3 times a week. Started with 30 mins, then added in a 5k, then 3 X 5k and when that was comfortable, tried a 5.5k, then went on to 6 km for my runs.

Yesterday as I was a way from home, carried on to 6.5k and my recovery has been slower, stiff legs and a bit achy so although I am not injured,math inking of pulling back to 5k again this week.

Does anyone else find there is a distance that is beyond them right now and how do u know when to try again?

9 Replies

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  • I just pushed myself to run 8k again today and felt like it was potentially a 'mistake' too (esp as it was the only run I did this week as well!) although perhaps I've just about got away with it. I've done extra stretches again and am about to jump in a hot bath to recover. I think knowing your limit is a positive thing as long as you do make sure you're careful at that point. Keep playing with different ways to break the barrier. Go back to previous distances that used to be difficult and enjoy them being easier now - e.g. see if you can do 5k a bit faster now, or try breaking up your run into 3k then walk for 0.5k then run for 3k, try running very very slowly, etc. I couldn't get up to 5k for ages and tried loads of strategies to manage a 5k comfortably without ragged breath, stitches, sheer exhaustion etc all taking over. It took me about 3 months from May to August but I got there and managed a parkrun finally in late August. Now I'm nearer to 10k than 5k, can't believe it to be honest. It's a long game, but satisfying I think :)

  • Thanks for ur ideas, I will just stick to 5k for a rest next week. Can't actually believe 5k is a rest because I struggled to run for a minute not so long ago. I found 5k a real challenge for ages. I have read that progressing from 5 to 10k is quicker n easier than couch to 5k, I hope so LOL. Tso rest days should put me back on track 😀! Hope you have a good rest, can't help ourselves from doing a bit more, can we??

  • You could try running a few quick 3k runs, or just 1 k runs with a slow jog in between. Not every run has to be further ☺

  • It's tricky isn't it? I have managed a few longer runs recently, with 6.3k being my furthest. However my last couple of runs have felt harder and I actually stopped mid run yesterday because left calf wasn't happy. Am desperate to build up to 10k but think I have been pushing things a little too quick, especially as I had a nasty calf tear earlier in the year. I know I will get there but have realised my body is going to dictate when, not a pre-printed training plan!😮 Think I run better when I have had two days off rest rather than one, as well. Good luck!

  • Very wise advice. When I graduated from C25K I was worried I wouldn't cope without a programme and started a 10k programme. Within a week, my knees were sore, so I stopped and now just do what I want according to how my legs are on a run and how they recover, going to have an easier week

  • Any time I've increased distance I've done it very very slowly and usually less than the suggested 10% maximum weekly increase. So far it's worked for me but everyone is different and I think you just need to use common sense and listen to your body. It'll usually tell you when to slow down and the secret is not to ignore the warnings!

    It's also a good idea not to increase each week but every 3 or 4 weeks decrease your weekly distance so that your body can rest a little and get ready for the next series of increases. Also, are you doing any cross training on your rest days as that all helps with strengthening the body for running? Cycling, swimming, Pilates, rowing, weights, yoga, walking etc.

  • That is good advice, I already increased last week from 5.5 km to 6 but I think going on to 6.5 k was unwise. Might even drop back to 5k on Monday

  • I will do a shorter run on Monday too hopefully - 4 or 5k. I think feeling I did too much today is a sign to pull back a bit too :)

  • Good advice above.

    Also, do remember that not all of your runs have to be the same length. Try mixing them up. One run can be 5k. "Speed" is a great podcast for doing something shorter (but it's deceptively hard work). And then do a longer run once a week.

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