Couch to 5K

Week 5 Run 3 completed :) The big 20 minute run completed :)

Just finished the big run of week 5, a couple of days later than planned, had a bit of pain in my left heel in the week so thought I should take a few extra rest days before the run. I did it on the treadmill (av speed 6.5k) and was quite surprised that I still had a bit left in me at the end (so did a last minute sprint of 9.k).

How much easier is it on the treadmill than outdoors? I remember having a bit of a struggle on the last 8 minute run I did outdoors (at the same speed), but today on the treadmill I found it so much easier. Just wondering if my fitness has improved that much or if it really is so much easier on a treadmill? If so, am I cheating myself by doing it on the treadmill?

4 Replies

I did my 20 minutes run on a treadmill and then found week 6, which I did outside, really quite tough.If you move outside, for the next run, do take it slowly; loads of people find week 6 run 1 a greater challenge than they expected. Personally I find the treadmill quite a bit easier ( no wind, no change of a gradient) but a bit boring, though of course it is interesting to see how fast you are going,, Wherever you are running you are getting fitter,so you are certainly not cheating yourself. If you want to make it tougher you can always up the incline, not that I do when I use a treadmill; I rather like running on the level.


I do not think that you are cheating yourself by running on a treadmill. I always run outside simply because I have no choice - I cannot really afford the cost of a gym. I ran on a treadmill for gait analysis and found it quite easy, lovely and smooth - but, of course, it would feel that way after running on various uneven surfaces outside. If you can run outside sometimes it would probably benefit you but please don't think the treadmill is any kind of cop-out because it isn't. By using that, plus some outside runs, you could have the best of both worlds if that suited you.

Now, well done on completing week 5 but, here, I must say that Azores has just given you some excellent advice - week 6 is not a soft option after the 20 minute run. Returning to intervals is a lot tougher than it may seem so please handle week 6 with kid gloves. Take it very slow and steady, keep calm and you will get through it okay. Good luck with your next run and very best wishes.


Thank you for responding :) Hopefully, I can do some of my next runs outside, weather permitting, so I will certainly take your advice and pace myself well :) x


Well done on completing the big 20 minute run. It is amazing to achieve and a great sense of achievement. I did the majority of my runs on the treadmill and personally do find the treadmill easier maybe for pacing as much as anything. It can get boring though and I am trying to make sure at least one of my weekly runs is outside even if it means driving somewhere suitable. The main thing is wherever you run you are rapidly improving your fitness so its all good. All the best with your future runs.


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