Bridge to 10K
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What next?

Am looking for some advice on what to do next. I graduated C25K in November and ran my first 5k (38mins) at the end of December. I've worked and got into a great routine of 3 runs a week interspersing steady 30 minute runs with C25K + podcasts (which have really helped improve my pace) and slightly longer runs at the weekend and I can now run 5k in 34 mins.

I love the solitude and headspace running gives me (I spend my working life dealing with the demands of 100s of children and their parents at a primary school) and my unstructured weekends so park runs and running clubs don't really appeal.

I like the idea of eventually getting to 10k but not sure I'm quite ready to join ju-ju's Feb programme - but am thinking I might be able to consider this around Easter time.

So what should I do in the meantime? Keep on going as I am and trying to improve on the 5k time? More interval training - I do like the Speed podcast (and where might I get some support with that?)? Strengthening activities - I do get occasional hip and knee niggles but nothing that a rest day doesn't put right but wonder if increasing the distance might put more pressure on these. Or bite the bullet ond go for 10k now?

You should know I have never been a member of a gym and have no desire to be! And I don't have lots of time. Also still feel a bit like a running imposter - can this really be me? (I mean like posting on here rather than C25K forum makes me feel like a bit of a fraud - this is for proper runners right?)

All advice gratefully received.

Happy running!

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Why not join JuJu's prog anyway so you are connected to the prog's community and support? You could just clock the shorter runs and max-out at 6km. You don't have to follow through the weeks ridgidly but as and when you feel like it so you can progress when you want to or tread water for a bit?

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It really depends on what you feel you want to do. I consolidated for about six months, because I was happy doing 30 minute runs, sometimes the C25k + podcasts and driving out to new places to run sometimes.

There is a Quest every month on the Bridge forum so you can commit to running three times a week and chat on there if you don't want to post your runs and also weekly chat posts which can help you feel motivated.

As long as you are enjoying yourself, there is no rush to start increasing your run time/distance.

There are strengthening exercises you can do, here is a link.

nhs.uk/Livewell/c25k/Pages/...

Why not join the Feb quest, I'm going too..😊xx

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Well you are certainly no fraud. That is a brilliant time for your 5 k distance, and you run....... very regularly.....nothing fraudulent about you Runner!

Don’t join JuJu’s Magic Number until you feel you are ready to take on the 10 k, there is no need to put unnecessary pressure on yourself. If you want to do it in the future you will, Ju will always relaunch so there is no rush.

As Jan says there is the Quest, plus if you can add in new routes to keep things fresh that might be good. Have a look at hill training, Kenyon hills or something, as well as choosing routes with some hills.

An occasional Parkrun might work........how about half term and end of term......that’s what my teacher daughter aims for. You may find you really love it.

Those knees........go see a sports physio asap.....deal with it early. You seem to really enjoy the running so invest in your legs. You will come away with some exercises which you can add to your routine.

But just run because you can.

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I’ve had another thought, how about signing up for a couple of virtual events, many submit part of your registration to a specified charity.

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The beauty of park run is its free and theres no obligation to go every week. Just rock-up when it suits you. And with hundreds the length and breadth of the country it doesn't matter where you are you can go to any you please.

That said, if your not ready to move to 10k, and theres no reason why you should, why not explore other avenues.

If you want to add a sense of adventure then the zombierun app is popular (and free): zombiesrungame.com/

Why not sign up for a 5k race, to give your runs a more training impetus: timeoutdoors.com/

There are also different types of runs: interval/ fartlek/ hill training, etc. Or how about you try and add a little bit more distance to your run anyway. If you feel good on a run don't stop at 5k try for 6k. Don't go too big too soon though.

I find working with weights a nice alternative on my non-run days. I wouldn't touch a gym either. Just get a set of weights and start small at home. There plenty of guidance out there.

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Thanks everyone for your suggestions. I think I'm going to take my time before rushing into 10k programme. Was wondering if I was just dithering but think I want to make sure I'm becoming a stronger runner.

Have really enjoyed the interval training on the speed podcast so am going to investigate that a bit more and use my weekend runs to try and gradually increase the time I spend running.

I also want to have a go at some strengthening exercises for my hips and knees on rest days - so plenty to be getting on with for now 😊

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