Consolidation 5k - I realise I can run (long post)

I ran 5 k today. As planned. I found a lovely loop round the park to extend my standard route to 5 k and as it's now lighter in the mornings I have no problem running in the park at 6 am. It's full of dog walkers anyway. The run was nothing spectacular, 38 mins, steadily getting faster as the kms rolled by. No niggles, no gremlins, a solid run. Was relieved when 5 k was announced on runkeeper but that was because I'd been running faster and pushing myself a bit. Not too much, I still cough now and then.

So not much to report. And then in the afternoon at work I got thinking. That is exactly what I wanted from Laura. I want it to be the most normal thing in the world to run 5 k 3x a week (or more). I want it just to be a part of my life - not up for discussion, just something you get up and do, like cleaning your teeth. I checked my "running equipment", no blisters, heels fine, no tightness in my calves or pain in my shins. Knees better than they were 3 weeks ago, no soreness or stiffness in my thighs, no back ache. My body had just "swallowed" my morning run whole and I felt great. My legs feel really strong, full of energy. I smiled to myself, I had run 5 km this morning - that's more than most people walk all day - and it was the most natural thing in the world. I could do it tomorrow as well and I know it would be no problem. It dawned on me - I can run! I can run for 30 minutes or for 5 km and I can do it regularly. It's not easy, but it's not difficult either.

Today I realised I am a runner.

Of course I want to run further and faster, but when I think of runners I have an image of a wiry, lean 90 year-old, who runs 5 miles a day every day before breakfast. I don't know where the idea comes from, but I want to be like that when I'm 90!

But for the moment, thanks to Laura I have achieved something I have strived for for about 12 years. On a number of occasions in the past I have been able to run for 30 minutes. But it's always been a one-off, the next run has always been a struggle, and the one after that even worse, until my efforts fizzled out. Until the next attempt, weeks of trying to build up some kind of distance and time, minute for minute, always a struggle. Not really much fun, not really much success and never anything consistent. I really thought I was not a runner. My lower back would ache. My toes and part of my feet would go numb. I'd run out of puff. I'd push too hard and fall ill. My legs ached for days. The distances got shorter instead of longer. Even 8 mins / km was impossibly fast.

The C25k programme is truly amazing!

Sorry for my ramblings - I am astounded at my transformation into a runner and my new-found skills.


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18 Replies

  • If it were possible to double-like a post, i would do so.

  • What a wonderful post.

    I think many who've completed C25K know *exactly* how you feel.

    You've articulated it beautifully.

    Thank you,


  • This is a great post!! This plan is incredible - but only because you've had the mental staying power to stick to it. Congrats on graduating and on your 5k run! Running in the morning is always very impressive to me :-)

  • I've come to the conclusion mornings are the only time I will consistently run! But I am faster at weekends or midday whenever I run then. Strange.

    But once I'm home after work it is very difficult to get out again.

    You're not far from graduation yourself - tomorrow is the big day isn't it?

  • Yup! I'm looking forward to it. I enjoy running after work as it lets me mentally shut off, but I like being able to run in the daylight at weekends, too!

  • I love this post! It's so encouraging and enthusiastic. I hope I can get to this stage. 😀

  • You will if you want to. It's astoundingly addictive this running lark! Amazing what happens in just 9 weeks!

  • What a great post! Inspiring to those of us who are still near the beginning of the programme (wk 3). My aim at the end is also to be able to run 3 times a week for half an hour and make it a part of my life, maybe when I get to that stage (and I feel that I will thanks to reading all the positive posts on this forum) I will want to run further and faster but not thinking that far ahead at the moment.

  • Jay,

    thank you for that inspiring post, I also want to be that wiry debonair 90 year old running every morning before breakfast, who has that smile on his face because he loves life. I am very early in the process, and for now I aspire to be like you and run 5k in 30 mins before I eat and start my day of work.

    this programme is amazing I highly recommend it to anyone who wants to swop the couch for a an active life !!!

    I shall become an ambassador for couch to 5k :-)

    I hope you have a wonderful day

    Kind Regards


  • Congratulations. Exactly what I want out of the c25k. To run 3 times a week for general health and fitness. No fuss. No drama.

  • I echo all of it and well done by the way. I've tried running several times over the past couple of decades on a treadmill, with little success. Like you eventually getting to about 30 minutes, 40 once I seem to remember, but short lived and never repeated ... until trying again a couple of years later. Started C25K in November last year, graduated in January and am now regularly running each week. I aim for 3 times a week, a 30, a 5k then push a little further but some days I do the bare minimum cause I'm not feeling it for some reason. But I still go out ...

    I did 8k last night for some reason, having done a couple of 6s and a 7 ... some days you just feel you can do it but I'm conscious of not pushing too hard too fast and am protective of my rest days as having got this far I don't want to injure myself ... a whole new way of thinking that I never had before, another bonus.

    I seem to be working towards 10k so I'll go with it and who knows after that but whatever comes next, it will almost certainly involve getting out 3 times a week, rain hail or snow and just knowing that I can do it ... finally! Enjoy your freedom too :-)

  • That's exactly what I want. And it just hit me yesterday that it was possible. That I was in fact already doing it! (Only graduated 2 weeks ago, so that's probably a bit of overstatement). And I was pretty chuffed!

  • What a fantastic post!!!! Love it! Well done you! You are a runner what a fantastic achievement! x

  • Great post JaySee, sorry I missed it. Sounds like you are truly embracing being a runner and it's lovely to hear how it's become a part if your life now, just as you'd hoped. Fantastic x

  • How are you doing? Have the muscle-problems stopped? Are you just consolidating quietly in the background?

  • Hi, I'm doing good thanks. Still a big niggly with the hip and upper thigh, but I ran 5K on Sunday in 35 mins 6 seconds and was absolutely over the moon! I bored everyone with a really long post about it, but it was great, I loved it! :) Tonight I ran some intervals with my daughter, was fun too! Like you, just loving actually being able to run - still find it funny when I plod off, in my gear, it doesn't really feel like me! Plan to run 5k next time out, probably Friday, but not fussed to really increase pace or anything yet, just keen to get some good 5Ks in my legs for a couple of weeks. X

  • I'm out on Friday as well. Thinking about intervals with the C25k+. Then next week we're on holiday in France so I'll be running in new places. Will be hotter as well.

    Saw your post about running with your daughter - sounded really fun!

  • Ooh France with running gear, how exciting! Will look forward to reading about the holiday runs when you're back :) x

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