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Couch to 5K
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Is it about the time, speed or distance?

I have just completed wk7 r2 and running comfortably for the recommended time of 25mins and have even run for a further 5 mins as I knew I could. But now I'm thinking about the pace and also the distance. I read the aim us to run for 30mina x3 in a week but if I don't run the 5k in the 30mins have I not been successful...a bit confused.....

9 Replies

Read the pinned post on the right for the official requirements for graduation.

Being able to run for 30 minsis the aim - many of us can't do 5k in that time on graduation ( or ever! ☺️)

Sounds like you're doing great!


Thanks for that now I can start overthinking it and concentrate on the rest...I can't believe I can say with pride that I can run for 30mins with feeling as if I am going to have a heart attack :) live this app it's been a savour to me over the past 2 months.

Well done on your graduation :)


the program is 3 x 30 mins on week 9, if you manage 5km all the better. I graduated last June and still yet to do 5km in under 30 minutes! I can now run 5km but takes longer and thats ok for me :)

happy running


Cheers for your positive support. Keep running :)


There is absolutely no requirement to run 5k in 30 mins! At any stage of the plan.

It's not about the time, speed or distance - it's about you, running for 30 mins, 3 times a week. Doesn't matter how far, doesn't matter how fast - in fact it's vital that you build speed and distance gradually or it's almost certain you will do yourself some damage. If you complete W9 by running 3 x 30 then you've 'graduated'!

Once you have done that, then possibly think about increasing pace and/or distance but again, it's important that you do it gradually. Your body needs time to adjust to the extra stresses you're putting on it so a measured approach is more likely to bring results than trying to bash out PBs every week.

Good luck!

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Yes.....and no. There are the graduation requirements and then theres the more general question about what you want from running. Not everyone is the same. There's no rule or 'best practice' around running. No one will think any less of you if you jog around slowly just a couple of times a week if that's what suits you. However, I have a feeling, and only because it happened to me and evidently to many others, that obsession quickly builds.... I would add another thing to your list. Speed and distances might be things that you want to improve, but another thing that motivates me is location. The thrill of the new run on a different surface. See Pigivi's "New Run" post from last night as an example. Pure joy and not a mention of speed or distance.

I recommend you complete the programme, running with Laura three times a week and then..... See how you feel. Anything could happen.

And that's the great thing about it!


3 x 30 mins in week 9 and you graduate :D :D don't worry about pace speed or distance for now all of that you can work on after you graduate , You are already a big success for 1 starting and 2 being at week 7 :D keep at it you are doing really great :D


Cheers slow rob I will keep this in mind... Not long to go now :)


I have just completed w7 r1 and covered 3k in 25 minutes so I know there is no way I will run 5k in 30 mins lol. I am going for the slow and steady wins the race mantra! Also I ruptured my achilles last April and so I plan to probably just continue with 30 minute runs 3 times a week when I finish the programme. I may try and increase my pace a little bit but my advice would be don't overdo it and end up getting injured.

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