Couch to 5K
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Race for Life coming up, advice?

So tomorrow I'll be finishing week 4, and I've worked out that if I keep going with my running every other day that the Race for Life falls on my running day so no worries there. I'll have just started week 7 by the time my Race for Life on the 2nd of June comes up, so what would you do? Try and slowly jog the whole thing? Stick Laura on? (but don't want to miss out on atmosphere), or just do what comes naturally?

Very nervous/excited about it because its my first ever "running" event, and I do have my heart on jogging the whole thing but am I being slightly over-ambitious?

7 Replies

Start slow. START SLOW! Don't let everyone else shooting off quickly at the start make you think you have to keep up with them. Go at your natural pace and you will be overtaking the over keep ones by a couple of km's in. I was given that advice before my first race and it served me very well.

Are you running on your own or with someone? If you are on your own maybe have Laura ready and waiting. I have done one 10k with my sister (my first ever 'event' and one on my own). It was certainly nice running with my sister to keep me going. I put some music on when I ran on my own and it did keep me going in the tough moments but I don't think I enjoyed it as much as I didn't really feel part of the race... so I'd say have laura waiting if you need her and then see how you go.

Also I'd only ever run 6km before my first 10km race. I just wanted to finnish and fully expected to have to walk some of it but I ran the whole thing in 1hr 1min and totally surprised myself... you will be amazed at what you can do on 'race day'!!

Good Luck!


Like the advice above, just start and continue at your pace. I hadn't run 5k or for that long when I did my race for life. I ran it all and did it in under 35 mins. So keep going, and the atmosphere will drive u on :)


Agree with the other comments. I've now done RfL 5k about 6 times. Depending on the venue they may split the field into runners, joggers and walkers. I'd suggest you join the joggers or the back of the runners. I've found that even the "runners" includes a number of folk who go off too quickly and if you take it steady you pass them.

If you get a chance I'd recommend walking or running the course before the event. RfL is poor at giving info on routes but you may have friends who know where it goes. Also practicalities like parking and loos. That way you can concentrate on enjoying the day.

RfL isn't really a race so a great introduction to a 5k event. It's not timed and is about the spirit of the people taking part and the cause.


Race for Life is so incredibly inspiring, and made up of such a mix of people. I always get caught up reading everyone's signs, saying who they are running for. You might get stuck behind the "sudden walkers", people who just stop running in the middle of the course right in front of you, so don't stress if you don't get to run the whole way. Just enjoy it! I'm doing mine on the 1 June (my sixth), and looking forward to it.


I love the term "sudden walkers"!

Incidentally, thank you for the pointer to the book about running that I think you mentioned the other day (running like a girl?) - looking that up, I came across 'Running with the Pack' which I ordered online, and it arrived today, and I'm enjoying it. :)


I did my first ever RfL last Sunday, and it was great. I'd have had one earbud in, since I was running it on my own (DDs were walking with their nana), but I'd left mine at home, and my borrowed ones from m-i-l wouldn't stay in!

I'd second the advice to start with the joggers - certainly on Sunday even a lot of them stated walking after the first couple of hundred metres, so I think it's worth the psychological boost you get from going past people rather than being left behind or passd by hoardes of quicker runners ;)

Don't worry too much about not knowing the route; I'd looked at the route plans when we arrived at the site and was concerned that it look a bit complicated, with one bit that needed 2 laps - but they explained it before the start, and as well as signs saying '1st time left, 2nd time keep right', they also had a Marshall standing where the course split, reminding people which way they needed to go :)

More than anything, have fun! Happy running :)


Its one of the best things I ever did last year. Just do what you think is right , though I would jog. I did it on my own last year and put music on to block everyone else out.

This year I am doing RFL as a team ....The tickled pink Trotters ......though I will be the only one running, just can't resist it!!!

Hoping to then go back around the course to find the team and finish with them too.


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