Couch to 5K
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Can't keep a regular schedule?!

Hi all,

Have just completed 1st run of week 3 and feel great, was really nervous about moving up a stage but felt a bit of an accomplishment after surviving!!

I really struggle to keep to a 'running schedule' as read that your more likely to run if you do so on the same day every week. I also have the problem that my schedule is very up and down so one week I may not run at all if too busy. I'm sure others have this  problem, If so, do you just make sure you do the three runs then move to the next week even if it's over two or three weeks or do more runs of the same week?

Thanks for any ideas or advice xx

9 Replies

I don't have set days as I work a rota and have 3 kids and a disabled partner so their needs very often come first, I just make time when I can, sometimes I run while waiting for kids at an activity because I'm on taxi duty, or I go out in the dark if need be, or I make something like lasagne for their tea and run while it's in the oven , Its always possible , you might just need to be creative!


So far I have just done the set number of runs but over a longer time. I've never done extra runs. The longest I have had between runs is a week and I didn't need to re-do anything, my body still remembered! I worried about this too when I started, because after about a month life got more in the way, but it's OK to not be in a set routine. Sometimes you just can't, and I think it's more stressful to worry and then force yourself when you're tired/rushed, rather than enjoying the run when you do go. Rest days are good for you too. 

For example I already know I won't run again till at least Wed, because tomorrow is my rest day and on Tuesday I have yoga class. It might not even be till later in the week but when I do go it'll be when I have a bit of a breather to do it. Hope that is helpful in some way!


I'd really struggle to fit do it if I didn't have scheduled days, but do what you can. It is all better than not running at all. However if you don't run at all one week, I am not surechowcwell it would work. The point of the programme is that you're training the muscles you need to run and building stamina. If you sometimes don't run for a week at a time, don't do extra runs the next week to compensate. Just do 3 runs a week or run alternate days but no more.


I find it helps to remind myself that the run plus warm-up and cool-down will only take me 40 minutes max. If I have a clear hour I get my shoes on and get out the door before I have time to second-guess myself. 

I had nearly a week off between weeks 2 and 3, but I just carried on with week 3 anyway. As miss_august says, your body remembers how to manage. You could always just repeat one run of a particular week if you feel you need a refresher.


Well done, great feeling isn't it.  

I've been running every other day so far, however this coming week it could be a problem.  I think I will be taking two rest days after the next 2 sessions.  I worry about loosing motivation if I break with my usual routine but sometimes it can't be avoided. 

Keep up the good work!


I have changed my running days from time to time because life gets busy or maybe my legs are achy so a two day rest is needed.  It is good to plan to run 3 days a week but it is flexible, if you are too rigid, it is going to be disappointing when things change

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On the programme I tried to stick to Mon, Wed, Fri. I had a couple of deviations which really threw me. Now I'm just making sure that between Mon-Sun, 3 runs are done. Mixing up days and times etc. I think it has to be whatever suits and however you feel about it. It's 'quicker' to graduate if you have 3 or 4 runs in a 7 day period but as your running will hopefully continue for many years the main thing is to just 'do it' :)


I can't always do every other day as I'm on a rota like some of the others. I've found it best to repeat the last run if there's going to be a big gap ( say more than 3 days) as psychologically I feel I need the build up before moving on. It really doesn't matter though as you'll get there in the end just keep going!


thanks all for the messages, its nice to know others are in the same boat! currently managing 2-3 runs a week when I can. just think it might take  me a little longer but ill get there. Always do my Wednesday morning run, wk4r1 done! slower than a snail but done!!


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