Couch to 5K
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Foam rollers, squats etc?

I have seen foam rollers mentioned on here from time to time and didn't know whether one would be a useful addition to my life, however I have a rather tender hamstring today so would a foam roller be useful for an occasion such as this? I have also been doing regular squats in the hope of adding some strength to my legs but is there an accepted amount I should be doing daily? I tend to do them whenever I can - making the tea, standing at the photocopier at work etc! I suspect a bit of core work may come in useful as well but it's difficult to know what to do and how often.

5 Replies

Hi LisaRose,

On the NHS website there is a 4-week strength and flexibility programme that perfectly complement the C25K one.

You can find it here:


Thanks secan, I'll take a look at that

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I remember an article that used the anology of a chicken thigh with the layer of fat between skin and muscle that acts like a lubricant, when this is not present pain is felt. Pressure from the foam roller sorts out these hot spots. Not sure if I've got chicken legs, but foam roller did clear some niggles.

My doctor however compares muscles to noodles and hence any way of stretching these noodles will be beneficial.

Currently my shoulder noodles have scars which I'm now working to sort. Causing the classic frozen shoulder. Or frozen chicken noodle soup?!

So I'm officially a wreck or a meal. I'll be running again soon 🏃🚑🙈

Tackling fitness 1 injury at a time.




one of my favourite topics and activities. How many squats? I don't think there is an upper limit, and your approach of whenever, wherever, also known as 'greasing the groove' is a very good one. It will do wonders for your general mobility. As with everything, but particularly with squats though, how you do them is more important than how many. Quality over quantity. Spending a bit of time, or better still a lot of time, working on the mechanics of your squat will pay bigger dividends than endless sub-par reps.

this is not meant to sound condescending: I have been hammering out squats by the hundred since I started C25k but only relatively rcently have relaly started pay attention to my form and found that it was actually pretty appalling. I squat every day, 5 days of the week under the watchful eye of a strict coach and while my form has improved drastically, it still takes effort and nagging every day to correct my flaws and I still have a long way to go. hinging from the hip, not bending from the knees, not allowing the knees to move forward, keeping the chest high, back straight, opening the hip flexors... for such a simple movement there is a lot going on.

There are loads of online tutorials to learn how to do it, YouTube has tons too. You will need to do some work in front of (and sideways on to) a mirror to see what you are doing. I love watching videos of people squatting properly (yeah, I know, SquatGeek). It is so simple, but done right such a thing of grace. Watch this video of Lu Xiaojun - ignore the weights (and the fact his is lifting 4 times hs bodyweight!) and watch his squat form.

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Wow that guy is impressive, makes my knees creak just watching him. I don't look anything like that doing my squats at the photocopier, some work to do methinks 😀


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