Seem to be going backwards, not forwards, sinc... - Couch to 5K

Couch to 5K

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Seem to be going backwards, not forwards, since graduation.

moonmar profile image

The past few runs have seemed more difficult than the programme. I don't seem to be able to run for 30 minutes without finding an excuse to stop at about 20. Today I did better. I had to stop and walk to get around a RADAR gate on my way out, closely followed by a lace tie up. On the way back, I decided to remove my long sleeved outer top at the gate and then had to slow down to a walk later on to avoid skidding into the canal at the muddy puddle zone.

I feel I am not progressing. I know it is all in my head but I don't know what to do for the best. I think today's run was better than my three in Menorca because I was using my own music.

Has anyone got any advice for someone who thinks she is cheating calling herself a runner?

7 Replies

Could you keep listening to the week 9 podcasts a few more times? I had my first run after graduation today with my own music and no Laura for the 1st time and I definitely missed her talking me through it and the encouragement! I wondered if I might benefit from still listening to week 9 every so often to keep me going! Maybe set yourself some specific goals? I think throughout the program there's always small goals each week with the big goal at the end of 30 mins running and once you're done you can feel a bit lost without goals! Do you think that could help?

Jaqs99 profile image

I don't think that's cheating! You're having proper runners' runs..and that includes puddle avoidance, wardrobe changes etc! How about setting out to do 20 mins every other run and 30 mins with Laura in between. Or try 15 mins run and then 90secs walk repeats 2 or 3 times. Whatever you do you are a runner! Enjoy :) x

moonmar profile image

Thanks Jaqs99 and Purplesparkle8. Your comments have helped.

no-excuse profile image

You are definitely not cheating! It doesn't matter if you have to stop, it doesn't matter if you walk for a bit. You are out there, you are able to run and you are a runner. I floundered around after graduating because I missed having the structure and those goals. I found the stepping stones,speed, and stamina podcasts (downloadable from here) helped me until I had decided what I was going to aim for next. The main thing is get out there for however long and to enjoy it. x

We all go through times when we don't feel like we're making any progress. After the heady heights of graduating, it's quite easy to struggle and lose a bit of motivation and therefore feel like you're not doing as well as you were.

I did W9 for about 4 weeks I think before trying some of the C25K podcasts, but now I usually listen to speech rather than music and that way I'm not trying to keep up with a beat (although I do like the speed C25K podcast).

The best advice I can give you though is just to slow down and enjoy your running. There is nothing wrong with taking walking breaks, indeed some deliberately use this as a method of running further or for longer. But as you know you CAN run for 30 minutes, then it is a benchmark you can keep aiming for.

By slowing down I mean run at a pace where you could talk while running. 80-90% of our running should be at this "easy" pace, so chances are you've been pushing yourself too hard and trying to run too fast.

And of course you're not cheating. You're a runner. Enjoy your running! :)

Bazza1234 profile image

I was in a similar situation to you after graduating. I "managed" to do the 30 minute non-stop runs by forcing myself to do them according to the programme - but I did not enjoy doing them. So, after graduating, I reverted back to using run/walk to run my 5k Parkruns and also to increase my distances (now out to 10k's) . I have now been graduated for about 5 weeks and I believe that I am slowly discovering something - a combination of improved fitness over the past 5 weeks plus the discovery that I can indeed run more slowly non-stop, has meant that running non-stop is no longer quite as loathsome for me as when I was doing the programme. !! :) It is a very recent discovery - in fact, only this past weekend - so from now on I am intending to incorporate both run/walk and non-stop running aspects into my longer distance training. It doesn't matter what works for some or what works for others -- what is important is what works for you. And when you find what does work -- do it!!! :)

Ullyrunner profile image

Of course you are a real runner. Plenty of us do run/ walk at times to extend our distance. You know you can run for 30 minutes but you will only keep running if you find a way of doing it that is enjoyable for you. That may mean new distance challenges or walk breaks, or new routes, or speed work. There is no failure or cheating if you are out there instead of on the couch.

Just experiment with what feels good and enjoy. No one is judging.

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