Post C25K - bewildered by options

Hello B210K-ers! This is my first post here after graduating C25K a couple of weeks ago. Since graduating I have done a couple of parkruns, a couple of 'I'll just go for a run' runs (30-ish mins), and last week I tried the Stepping Stones C25K+ podcast. I really didn't get on with the stepping stones thing - I felt like I wasn't doing it right. The pace was OK, but it made me run with shorter steps than usual, which I guess means I wasn't moving my legs fast enough. Awful music too. After about 15 mins I gave up, switched to my usual music and jogged home.

I haven't really figured out what my next goal is yet. I want to consolidate 5K (which I can do but still find pretty tough) and speed up a bit. Beyond that I can see myself interested in moving up to 10K, but I'm not in a rush.

I've bought a garmin watch, downloaded strava, heard about myoasics, garmin and various other apps etc. It's all a bit bewildering! One of the (many) wonderful things about C25K was that I didn't have to think - I just did as I was told... I miss that!

I think what I'm really looking for is a version of the C25K+ podcasts that doesn't have the awful music or the BPM thing. Does anyone know of such a thing? Or have any other advice?

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  • I couldn't face the C25K+ podcasts because of the music, didn't like the training plan that suggested I start with a 6k run, when I had never run more than 5k, so went it alone.

    Using the 10% rule, I increased one run per week and got to 10k in just a few weeks, which made me wonder what all the fuss was about. It was simple and flexible, which suits my personality, but I know some like structure.

    You will find your own way.

  • Thanks Iannoatruffe - I wish I could do it that way but I definitely need structure. I had a decent run this morning - just me and a desert island disk podcast - gorgeous south Oxfordshire misty autumn morning. I ran for about 25 mins, but I spent the whole time with 'I want to stop' gremlins. I didn't have that when I had Sanjeev Kohli in my ear telling me where I was up to and to push on. I think the answer might be that I need to to some consolidating with C25K week 9 repeats for a while.

  • I've been using the c210k app based on the c25k link at the last c25k run (I used the zen labs c25k app not the nhs one) and it lets you start somewhere in the middle of c210 and continue from there. You could start at week 7 which is a 25 min run.

    Before that I used the stamina c25k+ podcast for consolidation which I enjoyed. Never could get into the Stepping Stones - I think it was the music and the frenetic pace changes that put me off. Also just running for 30-35 min with your favourite tunes is fun too!

  • Thanks Decker - I will check that out, although I'm not sure I am ready to push on to 10K yet. I think a few weeks of repeating C25K week 9 might be in order.

  • Yes I agree. I think I did the 5k runs for at least a month before moving on. In fact I tried to go to the 10k program earlier but was not ready and had to keep practicing the 5s! Whatever works for you 😀

  • I entirely sympathise. Major appeal of Couch to 5K to me was that I just had to do what I was told, without thinking about it. I did Couch to 5K last spring, followed by a couple of Park Runs, and then floundered around without any structure and stopped running. I restarted Couch to 5K in January, and (fired with new year's resolutions) entered a competition for beginner runners to win a place on a run, which included a training plan. Having a deadline and a training plan has definitely helped keep me running, and made me run further than I ever thought possible. So suggest deciding on a distance - 10K? Half marathon? Look for a local race date some time in the future on somewhere like Run Britain, and then google a training plan for that distance. My husband used a 16 week Cancer Research half marathon plan, for example.

  • Thanks Fiendarina - that's exactly my problem. I'm definitely in danger of floundering without some structure. In most of my life I'm the boss - I have to make all the decisions and (nicely) tell other people what to do. I loved C25K because I didn't have to be the boss. When I did my graduation run I came home and said to my husband 'I just wish all of life's challenges could be broken down and delivered like a C25K programme - it would be so easy!

    Yes I think a 10K sometime in the future is a good plan, but I really want a bit of time to consolidate 5K first. I think I might just return to week 9 a few times for now.

  • Good plan. I stuck with repeating week 9 for ages and did several Park Runs/ Great Run Locals. If you are consistently running half an hour / 5kish it's then much easier to step up to anything else (or so I was told).

  • Congratulations on graduating! It's a good idea to consolidate - in terms of running you are still a very new runner so don't be seduced into trying to do too much too soon. You need to get the miles on your legs, and I don't mean increasing your distance, I mean just getting out there and running regularly. Is there a Parkrun near you? This is an excellent way of focusing on your 5k with no pressure. You don't need to go every week but just popping in every so often gives you an idea of how you're progressing. Also, try including intervals and hill work (if you're not doing this already). There are plans out there but they are often aimed at specific distances or races. Is there a running club you fancy joining? Personally, that's not for me as I am a solitary runner. I have tried my local club's 10-week taster summer beginner's club but didn't enjoy it, but there may be something for you nearby if that's what you fancy.

    But above all, keep running!

  • Thanks Anniemurph. Yes you're exactly right - I feel like a very new runner. I've signed up to a beginner group at my local running club - it's a bit intimidating, but I thought I might as well bite the bullet and give it a try. I have done 3 parkruns so far - two since graduating. I really like them and agree they're a great focus for now.

  • Don't stress about it. Have fun with your running and develop at your own pace. Running groups are good and will help keep you on the road through winter and dark nights when you might otherwise not want to run alone. Running groups are for all abilities and they're used to C25k gradutes so don't worry about that

    I am the biggest advocate of C25K+ podcasts on here. They might be a bit strange but I am telling you that they are good for you, and that if you do them thoroughly they will move you on beautifully towards moving on towards 10k. If that's where you fancy heading

    Good luck. Bon Voyage!

  • Thanks misswobble. There was a similar post on the C25K forum yesterday and I noticed a few people saying they got on much better with the speed and stamina podcasts than with the stepping stones one. I will give them a try. I do fancy trying to speed up a bit...

  • You'll speed up when you get stronger. Getting stronger comes with longer, slower running. So, as you build up your running your strength will increase. Do some cross training too and walk as much as you can. It's all good

  • Firstly- well done on graduating!! So your goals are to speed up and possibly get to 10k? I do agree that consolidating the 5k distance is definitely the right first step! However when you are ready My suggestion is to increase your long run by 10% a week, have an interval session as one of your runs ( speed podcast or similar) and a 5k... this gives you structure and a focus which I sense is what you need. If you are interested I did a 6 week 10k programme which you will find in the pinned posts :

    healthunlocked.com/bridgeto...

    This is the first one.

    enjoy your running... that's the best advice over anything that I can give you 😎

  • Many thanks Ju-ju. I hadn't spotted your 10K programme - that's great. I think your suggestion of one longer, one faster, and a steady 5K is a great plan - I like the variety as well just building the miles in my legs.

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