Couch to 5K
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Slow, slower, happy nomoresloth!

Today's run was a very slow one. I did just over 5k in 36:04 min with an average pace of 7:09min per km.

I could have try to do a fast run: The weather was fine, not too hot, not too cold. Breathing was ok. I didn't feel exhausted when I ran. Everything was just fine (except my stupid ear phones that decided to pop out all the time...)

But: I didn't even try to go fast. I took this run as an opportunity to run just for pleasure. I did a PB (5k in 32:11) on Tuesday so I felt no need to try and beat it again.

Usually I feel bad after such a run especially if I feel that I could have tried harder. But this time, I don't. I think it's because right from the beginning I didn't try to be fast. I just tried to keep going, enjoying the landscape, the dogs running on the lawns in the park, the BBC podcast in my ears, the sun shining on me...

I recommend to everyone to do a conscious slow run. It's not about speed. It doesn't matter if and when we do a sub 30 minute 5K. It's about running and feeling the newly gained fitness to do so. I started the programme in April and I definitely couldn't have run for 36 minutes back then. This is what counts, I am no longer the unfit person I used to be. Ok, I'm still chubby and don't look as if I was doing any sports but, hey, there's a surprising fitness in this overweight body and anyone who judges my level of fitness by my outward appearance would be surprised if he or she knew how long I can run.

I will still try to improve my speed and won't do these "take-a-break-runs" very often. But from time to time, it feels good. I can work on speed on another day.

Enjoy your runs! Don't put yourself too much under pressure about beating a PB! You're doing all this not for the stopwatch but for a very important person in your life: yourself!

Happy running!

5 Replies

What a lovely post and wise words NMS. By the way your 7.09 pkm is faster than my PB however I am only in wk 10 and my goal is to increase the distance to 5 k. I am so happy with my running now and enjoyed every second of today's run. I could have happily kept jogging today. Happy running!!!


You are so right about having a slower run day every now and then. I do have the odd day, like Monday this week, when I just knew it would not be a quick run, so I set myself a 5 K target to 'Just Do It' (hasn't someone used that tag line before :-D). I find that important because it ensures I do get out on the days when I don't feel like it so much.

I also use RunKeeper to set myself a distance target, currently "Run 150 miles before 1st October" (I am half way there, and its looking tight). I find this motivates me to go out and just get some miles on.

Happy running.


A slower run is also known as a recovery run, so you actually discovered an established technique all by yourself. I think the idea behind it is to still get out there and run, which keeps the body ticking over, but to do it at a slower pace to reduce the strain.

I currently have one of these runs a week, which co-incedently was a 5km this morning.


Yes indeedy! Mixing up the paces is highly recommended. Though like Mazzero, your 'slow' would be super-fast for me - but that doesn't matter in the least, as it's not a competition against each other. We're all running against ourselves! :) Running slow enough to breathe fairly naturally, and look around at the scenery, is definitely worth doing.


Yeh, your slow is faster than any I can do too! So well done! My best 5k is only just under 40mins!


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