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Couch to 5K
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So I completed couch to 5k back in march which was good and my first 5k after completing took me just over 33 minutes. I then set myself the aim to try and complete it in under 30 minutes. I thought that continuous practice would make me better like anything. I managed to knock 30 seconds off of that eventually. However recently I have slowed down so much. where I used to be getting closer to 6 mins per km, I am now up to 7 and even 8 mins. I cannot get anywhere near 32 minutes. One run was 37 mins! I have tried increasing distance and interval training but nothing seems to be working. Any advice from anywhere?

5 Replies

Try mixing things up with interval training also called fartleks where you run as fast as you can for a minute then jog/walk for 2 minutes to recover then repeat. The speed podcast has this and will help you get quicker. Also try to do a long slow run and every 4 weeks have a couple of days off. Your body needs to recover and going flat out all the time will hold you back.

It worked for me. You could also look at myasics plan and set a goal of sub 30 5k and do the run myasics.com (it's free)

Good Luck


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Completing C25K in March would mean that you did the programme during Winter?? Are the warmer temperatures now affecting your runs??


Don't worry about it. Just keep running every other day and you will gain strength and fitness. Eat well, good healthy food and stay hydrated. It will come. Just don't stress over it


I agree with the posts above :)

For me, the heat is a real factor that is affecting the ease / pace of my runs.

You are only about a month or so behind me in your experience and that makes us both relatively inexperienced. I'm sure I read somewhere you are classed as a beginner for the first 18 months.

Doing some extra cross training (it doesn't have to be much) seems to be helping me. The speed podcast is also very good, but be warned - it really pushes you so might not be right for you unless you are massively determined :)

Have you tried a Parkrun? Running with others seems to help and the times you are suggesting are slow are respectable enough to just turn up and give it a go.

Please try and be patient and enjoy your summer of running. I'm sure it will come with time.


I think like you I believed that practice would bring improvement naturally, and I was a bit despondent when it didn't happen as well as a bit frustrated - if you're putting the time in, you kind of feel you are due your reward...

What I found worked for me was to get a structured plan and follow it - my personal preference was for Runners World (if you've read ANY of my posts from the last 3 months you will now be letting out a collective groan :) ) which aimed at moving you from around 31:30 to sub 30 in 6 weeks. I'd say you could do this off your time - it's more about having a process and seeing it through.

I did look at my asics as well, but my personal opinion is that it was offering less improvement over a longer time (I think you can adjust your goals as you go, but I was put off when entering the initial data).

What I'm getting at is that - for me at least - having a professional plan to follow/achieve worked better than me going out for a run without having a clear aim (covering weeks, not just that run)

Hope that helps



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