Couch to 5K
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Can anyone suggest a good alternative to the Couch to 5K which is no-impact?

I broke my patella a couple of years ago and have been told not to run or jog by my GP - I tried the first session but the knee swells and is very painful. I've since tried very fast walking but it hardly compares to the effort needed to run. Even a fast walking session needs a couple of hours of icing for the knee to return to normal.

9 Replies

I'd recommend cycling. One of my hubby's kneecaps is held together with six pins following an accident and although he can now walk and hillwalk he doesn't feel he can run. He sometimes joins me on my runs on his bike. If you're not a cyclist/don't have a bike, it's possible to make a start on a cheap or second-hand bike, as long as you find on that is a reasonable fit.

If you wish the discipline of a gradual training schedule to follow, some of the charities that organise sponsored cycle rides share Beginner Cycling plans. eg

Cancer Research:

British Heart Foundation:

These give you a written plan that you can follow exactly, or adjust to fit your schedule.

If you're looking for a supportive community like here, you could try the Cycling Bug - a new website (an off-spin of the sister Running Bug):


The Amature Swimming Association has a programme called Swimfit that provides progressive training cards depending on your level, and a number of distance challenges.

Google asa swim fit will get you there.


Extreme hill walking? I once a woman at my gym walking on the treadmill at ridiculous inclines. It looked like a real workout and the sweat was pouring off her. Must be amazing for your behind!


Thanks for the replies. I live on the south coast and there are certainly loads of extreme hills here and that, together with my accident prone nature, excludes the cycling idea. But I would really like an exercise plan which takes into account the stunning (and flat) walks alongside the beach. Has anyone succeeded with longer term exercise plan using speed walking?


I know hills - I live in the Highlands - and have learnt to embrace the extra exercise... or at least put up with them! :-) I'm accident prone too and have several scars from stitches and the medical 'super glue' from tumbles from my bike, but recognise you may not to go that route!

What about Nordic Walking? There's information here on the NHS pages and some places offer group walks.


Hi Beachrunner

Definitely swimming and cycling as they are low impact. I also do hot yoga twice a week which is a bigger workout than you would think considering you dont move off a 6' by 2' mat. I also do workouts at home check out where you can download free exercise workouts or join for $10 and you get personal programs developed to suit you goal


I use the Leslie Sansone walking videos on YouTube when it's too nasty to go out for a walk or a run. She's an extremely nice American girl and very motivating.


I love walking and take out a couple of dogs. Been out with a strong one this morning for two hours. I love it as he walks at a fast pace so I know I'm working hard. It's free too

I started doing yoga at home too using free online clips on youtube


A rebounder? That's low impact but a good cardio vascular workout, you can even get rebounder dvds for different exercise routines. Yoga can be also good but best to seek a good instructor to start with as some poses may not be suitable for your knees.


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