To start Stepping Stone, or to go with my own music and see what happens next because as of today I graduated Week 9 Run 3

I never thought I would be able to say that I ran for 30 minutes straight without stopping. Never thought that I would say I would be back out there again because I hadn't reached my personal goal of running a full 5km. But here I am, post Week 9 Run 3 and already trying to decide if it's better to go with Stepping Stone or make my own playlists and see what comes of it.

Any other graduates have any input on this? I do like the structure that I got from the training, but I sort of want to play my own music now.

And, I am pleased to say that I made it wee bit further AGAIN today. I made it 3.74km which is about .10 further than yesterday I think :)

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  • Congratulations! It's an amazing feeling isn't it? You need to ask for your graduate badge now.

    I think it's a very individual thing about what people do next. Some like the structure of the C25Kplus podcasts. Some like to work with their own music. Some work on speed, some on distance. Some like to go for races or join running clubs.

    I think maybe you should mix it up a bit to see what you enjoy the most and go with that. The beauty is that you call the shots now!

  • Well done! I like the coaching encouragment and my own music playlists too. If you use a app for the coaching and tracking, then you can set the app to play your own playlist or podcast and have best of both. Laura from nhs is just a playlist really. I just started 5to10K with (android or iphone). There are many more free and paid apps. Enjoy your next stage!

  • Unless you have a particular event in mind that you want to train for, I'd recommend just going out and doing your own thing for 2 or 3 weeks and see how it goes. Someone posted about having chosen music with a beat that was too fast, so be careful what you choose. I listen to podcasts rather than music and just set my own pace.

    Anyway, after a while you may well find that you want a bit of structure, so then you can look at the options and try the C25K+ podcasts.

    In the meantime, congratulations! You'll now find that what you thought was the end of a programme is in fact the start of a whole new world of running adventures! Enjoy your running and keep us posted about what you're up to.

  • Congratulations. Personally I prefer to run without music etc but I am fortunate enough to live in a place with the sounds of the river, the sea, the birds and just now the lambs (and the wretched cuckoo which has been going all night!)

    I graduated at the end of Mach and have done 2 organised 5ks since then. One at 37 minutes, the other at 42. I am working on increasing distance & speed, but just for now enjoy & work out what is best for you.

  • Thank goodness for another nature lover! Beginning to think I was a bit odd. I run on country lanes, with no pavements and sometimes no grass verge, just high hedges, and it is vital to be always listening out for cars, tractors and manic cyclists ( who never seem to have a bell to use to warn my they are coming up behind me at speed), plus,as you say, the brilliant sounds of birds, the wind in the trees etc. I have never used apps in my life, and just got the instructions for doing C25K online and wrote them on a scrap of paper which I kept in the pocket of my sweatshirt to remind me of what I was supposed to be doing. Please don't feel you have to be using all the latest gadgetry if you can't afford it - have the confidence to trust your own judgement about your pulse, heart rate, speed, distance, how your body's feeling etc. Your own body tells you what it needs and how it's coping. This is one of the reasons I am not keen to do parkruns at the moment. I know I would be drawn into running faster than my body wants to. I am 60, total beginner at running, and want to be doing this when I'm 90, so taking great care, but can now do 5k, slowly, slowly, but feel wonderful when I'm done.

  • You've just really inspired me (as a 27 year old who'd also still quite like to be doing this at 90). Thanks. :-)

  • Well done on your running. You're doing brilliantly and increasing slowly as we are supposed to do to avoid injury.

    I found it difficult without the structure amd missed Laura and I am aiming to get to 10k so I begin with one of the podcasts amd then it rolls into my own music as lart of a playlist. I think you should experiment amdnsee what works for you.

  • I really should wear my glasses when tapping out posts on my phone!

  • Hi, well done you. As above, there are lots of options -- if you need structure, then keep up the structure; if it is less important then experiment with less.

    since reaching the 30 min mark I have been using nike + app on my iphone so that I can habituate running 5ks x 3 per week. When I do that I will move (slowly up to 6ks x 3). I am planning to run in a 9k run in september. I am pretty slow, but when I've worked on speed then I really struggle with my 5ks, so I think I will focus on that for the next wee while. Keep it up!

  • Brilliant you little runner you, I cant wait to graduate, but know I will feel lost for a while, will be interested in which you go

  • I'll let you know :) I think I will try out the other podcast first and see how that goes.

  • Well like you I graduated recently, yesterday. I have been toying with my own play list for the last couple of weeks and it has made a big difference to my runing and motivation. I googled runing songs at 160bpm and took it from there. You will find suggestions and see if you need to speed it up or slow it down. I used the microsoft media player to make the play list as it adds up the time for you. I then found good songs for the warm up and cool down. It has worked a treat. The first run of week 9 I managed 3.6km in 30 min and my graduation run was 4.4 km. I still haven't got it right but I'm getting closer. Good luck and please share what you decide to do.

  • What's funny is that I already have about 3-7 songs picked out to run to. I have no clue what their bpm is but it's more about the feeling of the song that makes me want to move. (and oddly most of them are from musicals lol!) I think I'm going to try the other podcast first and then the run after that I will make my playlist. Just haven't decided what to use for the warm up and cool down yet so it's sort of exciting. :)

  • If your open to suggestions, I love Waka Waka by Shakira for my cool down . Very uplifting and upbeat to keep you striding when you finish.

  • Congratulations on graduating!! I graduated last weekend and as I liked the structure of c25k I've done each of the 5k+ podcasts this week. I have to say the music is soooo much better on these and you still have Laura. I think it depends on your training goals as to what you decide to do next. Personally I'm going to focus on getting my 5 k time down to 30 mins rather than running a longer distance so think the 5k + will work for me. What ever you decide good luck with your running and enjoy!!!

  • Think I have decided I want to try the 5k+ myself to start out with. I have almost 5 months til my actually 5K run so I have tons of time to see what works best and maybe after a few weeks I can move over to my own music. At any rate, I am with you, I am more interested in running a full 5k in that 30 minutes so I'm going to keep working on that first.

  • Congratulations.

    Enjoy that amazing feeling.

    I too liked the structure and although I have got a playlist and use motionX GPS which tells me how I am doing every 5 minutes I do miss Laura.

    Enjoy which ever option you choose.

  • I mix it up, I still use some of the c25k podcasts, listen to my own music and I've also a little DAB digital radio so sometimes I'll listen to that, sports commentary, current affairs programme etc. Whatever works for you

  • Just for a quick update here, I decided to use the podcast today for my first post grad run. Now the funny thing to me is that while I actually walked twice during the podcast (yeah I felt I was allowed for some reason heh), I actually made it further this time than on my Friday run! 3.944km Don't know if it was simply the pacing of the music or having Laura there to help but that's another 0.2km closer to the actual 5K mark :D (although today's run felt like shite to me)

  • For a further update on things, I did the first two runs with the Stepping Stone podcast and found myself somewhat discouraged because I had a hard time keeping the beat in my head (yes a bit silly but it happened). So, out of pure curiosity, I used my own running mix (a 40 minute mix plus the 5 minutes on each for warm up and cool down) and the change was amazing. Saturday's run, even though I walked a few times during it, was the first time I made the full 5K distance before the mix was done! We'll see what happens with today's run. :)

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