Why do I think I am going to die (not really but you know what I mean) in the first 5-10 mins of Parkrun?

I need some help! I have tried everything - going slower, going faster, thinking about something else, increasing warm up to 10 mins, running for 10 mins before start to try and fool my body but NOTHING works . As soon as I start my legs feel really heavy, breathing really hard and it's just all horrible . Luckily I now know it only lasts for wee while and once I get to 1k marker it's much better - not easy but better. I always know I will manage to complete run but if anyone out there has any suggestions to help me at start I would be so grateful.

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10 Replies

  • I am exactly the same. I think it is pretty common.

  • Thanks eebahgum I think i had guessed that but was hoping someone had found a magic answer

  • I would love to know the answer to this too! I think by the time you get to 1k you know you just have to keep going and sort of go into denial :) but that first kilometer is not fun! I think with me it's that everyone around me is faster than me so however much I try to slow down I actually go much faster than I should and by the time I hit 1k most people have overtaken me so I'm not subconsciously trying to keep up anymore

  • Hi helc it's just so strange isn't it ? I got caught up with crowd and def went way way too fast the first Parkrun So then I tried to go slower but just felt the same Although the ' pain' is physical I am guessing a lot is due to mental attitude but I just can't seem to sort it out

  • Yes, I think it's the 'caught up in the crowd running faster than I normally do' thing for me too. I try to consciously slow my breathing down, concentrate on form, not worry too much about the pack around me (ha! easier said than done!). It's that fine line between using other runners to pace yourself against and not knackering yourself by trying to outrun your own natural pace.

  • Yes you are right not bad but it also happens when I think I am going slow -- maybe I'm not going slow enough yet. I sometimes feel why am I worrying about it as it's only a few minutes and I really love the Parkrun

  • Is it just at Park run? I feel like that on every run really! I even like to start on a downhill now to help! Which it does a bit! I think just go slower but it does take a while to get into any run! I start to get into it by about 4km and then ok till about 8km and after that just really pushing myself!

  • You are getting over-excited by the event ! :) Try walking the first 5 minutes - this way the speedies will get away from you and you will be able to control your own pace much better. After of couple of times of this, reduce the walking time. It is a little difficult to avoid getting carried away a bit at Parkrun :)

  • Thanks bazza I suppose the bit of me that wants to improve my time thinks by walking ill lose some mins I think you are right and I need to chill out

  • Hules On other runs my legs feel heavy for few minutes but I don't get that 'terrible' feeling My husband thinks it must be nerves but I get it even when I am feeling relaxed at start of park run I guess it must be my subconscious

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