Week 3 start

After week 2 my legs were so stiff that I was walking with difficulty, so after 3 days rest I did week 3 run 1 in the drizzle last night. Despite what Laura says, neither 'enjoy' nor 'easier' are terms that come to mind and I still feel nearer the couch than the 5k! I am knackered and am simply relying on the sense of achievement after running! However I am NOT giving up.

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  • It is tough...the 'runner's high' might be all you have at this stage, especially when you feel you're creaking along the roads and thinking to yourself, 'why am I doing this...it's just not pleasant!'!! This plan relies on you beating the mind gremlins on the run, as well as listening to your body when it aches and asks you to slow down or take an extra rest day.

    I'm not sure I can say that it gets easier, but as the weeks go by, you get closer to that 30 minute run and further away from the couch (don't worry about how far you're going, at this stage) - you might find that you can't stop yourself getting out, even if you don't enjoy it...it's the weirdest thing!! it is absolutely fantastic when you finish, though...I graduated just a few weeks ago and love just doing my own thing! Keep strong - you can do it! We're all with you... :D

  • ..also, try the NHS strength & flex podcasts (more of the lovely Laura) on your rest days...i wish I'd done the 5 week programme early on - I might not have suffered quite as much! The post-run stretches on the same website are really good too,..I still use them after every run!

  • Well done getting to week 3. Are you stretching after your runs, it does help a lot. Good luck with your next run, you can do it.

  • Thanks for the helpful replies. Almost 24 hours after W3R1 my legs aren't as stiff as last weekend - possibly as this time I ran on tarmac which was slow and steady - rather than off-road where my previously chosen footpaths have become too muddy to maintain a steady speed and even sucked off a trainer!

  • Keep at it! My legs were also really stiff and aching at about Wk3 but it got better. The warm up and cool down walks are important and a running friend told me that stretching your calf muscles was also important after a run. Don't try to go too fast, take it slow and steady. You've come so far already - keep going!

  • Looks like you're at a similar stage and in the same area as me. I find running on tarmac much harder than on fields/towpath. The constant impact feels bad for my feet as well as back and basically all of me. Or maybe I just run slower on uneven ground. I'm running along the Kidlington towpath (which is still OK after all that rain) but the approach over fields is certainly very muddy at the moment.

  • Kristina, I'm a few miles south on the wet footpaths and fields around the River Cherwell in the northern suburbs and go much slower off-road, particularly in gateways where cattle have churned up the mud. W2R2 was VERY slow in these conditions, but it will be back to roads for evenings.

  • I'm also pretty slow and gates are a good excuse to slow down even more - but I think being too fast for my fitness level is more likely to cause injury so I'll stick to my glacial speed for a while still until it feels easier. How has the rest of your week 3 gone? I did w4r1 today - mud splattered from top to bottom - but the cows don't mind.

  • Keep going Oxford Mike, I'm doing my first w3 run tonight and I have to say I'm nervous about it! I find stretching after the run really helps, someone advised holding each stretch for 20 seconds and not 'bouncing' it, I think it really helps as the w2 second run was soo sore on my thighs (which was odd as every other run was bearable, just!). I'm on the pavements as it's too dark when I run to be in the parks, plus I live in a city, makes everything bar pavement running quite difficult for convenience. I got told by Nike + that I'd done my fastest mile yet on last run, which had me nearly running with my arms in the air! I can assure you this 'run' wasn't exactly fast. I've been told that you do progress faster than you would think, if you keep going and I'm determined to finish this in January and start the new year feeling fantastic as a 'graduate' - so like me, hold onto the sense of achievement that you're doing this and trying and at least doing something good for your health and let's keep at it!! Good luck with it and I hope the aches and pains diminish! :)

  • Miss Slinky, Thanks for your reply and good luck with your 10k. I'm lucky to have the choice of roads in the evening or (very muddy) paths and fields in daylight - I'm going very slowly and hoping not to be recognised at this early stage in the programme!

  • Aren't we all Mike :)

    The 10K is a longer term goal, if I get to the 5k in January I'll be made up to be fair! You're a week ahead of me, so keep posting and let us know how you're getting on.

  • And now week 3 finished! Thanks for the encouragement and advice. I've done it but it doesn't feel like it is getting any easier and although I find it hard to believe, Laura tells me I'm ready for week 4 ... there's only one way to find out!

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