Couch to 5K
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Help! W5R3 is coming up, and I'm starting to lose my nerve!!

Ok, so I've just come back from w5r2. It wasn't easy, but I did it (I guess there'd be a problem if I found it easy!! ) But the whole way round, the little voice in my head kept saying 'thank god it's only 8minutes, thank god it's only 8minutes, oh my god on Thursday I have to do 20 minutes, I'll never manage 20minutes!!!'

I just can't imagine being able to run for more than double what I did today with no break! Argh! Up until now, the slots have seemed sufficiently small to feel manageable. But 20minutes just seems like FOREVER! :( any tips from those of you who have done it?

11 Replies

Don't worry you've done the prep work up to now and this program works. Have faith in yourself, start nice a steady, not too fast too soon. Try and relax into a comfortable stride and don't think too much about how much longer you have to go. You will be amazed how quickly the time goes and OMG what a buzz you will get when you finish it. Good luck :)


As long as you have done all the runs for the previous weeks you will be able to cope with it. It does sound a lot but you will surprise yourself how you CAN do it. The best advice I found was to start slow and steady. Do not try to go at it flat out because you will only run out of energy resources. For all your runs from now on hang on to the mantra 'Slow and Steady' and you will be fine. If your body starts screaming at you to stop then ease off the speed and take smaller steps. You may feel as if your walking pace is quicker than your running pace - not a problem!

You have reached the stage where you must get your head into the right mindset. The gremlin on your shoulder begging you to stop can wait. It is largely 'mind over matter' now.

Listen to your body. Obviously stop if there is a problem, but we are capable of so much more than we give ourselves credit for.

GOOD LUCK, DON'T PANIC! You will probably come back and surprise yourself!


Another 'slow and steady' vote here. :) None of us thought we could do it. But we did. Just keep going. :)


You'll do it don't worry! I remember feeling exactly the same and minutes 8-11 I ran thinking "I can't do it, I can't do it - but I'm not giving up - but how will I finish" but as everyone else say you've done all the training & you are ready - by the time I hit 11-12 minutes I was off & felt great, the worry faded away & I loved it! I graduated yesterday & i know that on week 5 I felt just like you - keep going - keep focused - you'll do a great job & you will do it!


I'm just one week 4 and I'm already dreading week 5!

that sounds like such a big jump in length of time:S But I'm sure that if we just go sloooow and steady and relax

then everything is possible -

I mean going from week 3 to week 4 sounded impossible;) and yet ... you did that;)


Well done for getting through W5R2 :D

I felt the same as you, I read on here someone suggested just thinking of the run in 5 minute chunks, you know you can do 8 minutes, so break it up. Laura does the same on the podcast, so concentrate on working through 5 mins at a time.

After a friends recommendation, around week 3 I started reading "Running like a Girl" by Alexandra Heminsley. I found it incredibly inspiring and it helped me adjust to the whole idea that running is so much more than a physical thing. She says the first 10 minutes are the 'worst bit' then you settle into a rhythm and for me, from then on it it's all about breathing, keeping steady and not falling over.

I seriously considered not attempting the twenty minutes and repeating the 8m runs, but was amazed that my body took me through it, and I'm like a regular healthy weight person running with twenty bags of potatoes strapped to them :s

Just Go For It and Good Luck!


You can absolutely do it!!! I (and I'm sure everyone who's done c25k) felt the same way. I remember hearing Laura say "20 mins" and I started laughing hysterically. My advice is the same as everyone else -take it slow!!! You might want to stop but just try slowing down. The first 10 minutes are the hardest but after that you'll be in a zone. And that feeling once you've completed 20 minutes straight?!?! AWESOME!!!!!! Good luck!


Try and fixate on anything but the time & the thought "I can't do this". Let your mind wander. Plan a day out, plan your next route anything. Your body can do it but you'll have to give your mind a good talking to. It is so doable & so amazing when it's done & you get the privilege of telling everyone - "I ran 20 minutes" and you're allowed to say it over & over again. Good luck


Thanks everyone for all your support and advice! I've stopped freaking out, and in a weird way, I'm now almost sadistically looking forward to doing it, just to reach that milestone! Will definitely be repeating the mantra 'slow and steady!', and I really like the idea of thinking of it in 5minute clumps, it makes it seem so much more manageable!


Good luck, mine is coming up at the end of the week and I feel the same way. Let us know how it went!


Yep, mine due on Saturday too! I found the first 8 min run of w5r2 rather hard, but the second one was fine. I think I'm slow to really warm up, and I'm curious if I'll settle into the 20 mins while running, or if I really need the walking break.


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