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Couch to 5K
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10k charity run next Sunday

Hello, I have signed up for a 10k next weekend but only ever done a few 5k events. I had to sign up as half the money being raised is going to our cause.

I have done very little training and never ran this far before (started from scratch about 16 weeks ago) - should I aim to do 5/6k and walk the rest or go for it?

9 Replies

ok. so here is my two penny's worth:

running further is all between the ears. I started c25k in July 2015 and to give myself an incentive I entered the Milton Keynes half marathon in March 2016. All went well, I graduate C25K in 9 weeks (not without discomfort in various, most parts of my body. When I started I was clinically Obese at 19 Stone),

Two months before the half marathon I developed a very painful problem with my IT Band ( I didn't know I had one until I started running). In the end I never ran more than 14KM before I did my first Half marathon.

So I ran my first half marathon and to be honest I walked twice (about 250m each time. In hindsight that was more about me NOT using Gels as I ran round. Running 21KM without nutrition is stupid (I know that now). I completed the 'race' in 2 Hrs 17 minutes. Not an exceptional time but I was smug simply because I crossed the finish line.

Fast forward to November 2016. I ran the St Neots Half marathon (my third half marathon) last weekend in 2 Hrs, 16 Seconds (arrrgghhh). On Saturday (6 days later) I ran the Columbus,Ohio half marathon in 1 Hour 57 Minutes.

The point here is that it is all about psychology. If you can run 5KM you can run 10KM. Albeit it might be slow, it might hurt. But you have the base fitness to do it as long as you can get out of your own way.

Do you remember how the first weeks of C25K felt? If you were like me you spent weeks listening to your body telling you to give up. But you ignored it and pressed on. The migration to longer distances is exactly the same. You have proved you can over rule your body and hit your goals. This is no different.

If you were talking Half marathon or further I would say that has a metaphysical difference but 5-10KM is all in the head. Go a little bit slower and when you get to 5KM think you are over half way and you might as well finish (the walk back to the start is further than the distance left to run).

If you get to the point that you can't breath, walk a bit (my best trick is to walk at the water stations. its easier to drink walking than running)

Sorry if I have banged on a bit. But my experience in running since I went through C25K is the best thing I have ever done. Its the most selfish thing I have ever done (it is all about me feeling good about me). I am over 4 Stone lighter and even after 2 half marathons in a week I am planning another 5k tomorrow!! If you had told me that on week one of C25K I would have laughed my head off)

I am no athlete. I am 53 years old. Have been obese since my 20's and only started running 16 months ago. the biggest lesson is to get out of my own way and go for it. Its the best feeling in the world!!!

Don't go into it planning to walk. Aim to run the whole way (even if it is slower than normal) otherwise you are destined to walk.

Good luck and don't forget to share your experience on this forum. It will inspire others.



Wow Mike, a very interesting way of seeing things and doing things. I think I may save your blurb and read it every morning before I go for a run. At the present time I am reading an interesting book called "running man" by Charlie Engle. I think you may have a bit in common. 😀


Absolutely amazing advice here pal! I am going to run 7mins and walk for 2/3 mins and break that down 6 times and see how I go. The biggest battle is all in your head and I got through the 9 weeks so this is very possible.


About to embark on my first 10k. Nervous but I will use all the above advice. Thanks


I'm a fan of intervals, so I'd consider approaching the entire thing as a run-walk. You can cover a decent amount of extra ground that way.


Having started the B210K course I can easily see that one can achieve 10K having been disciplined enough to reach 5K. My only concern is this 10% per week increase in distance and I would not want you to get injured. So I would say slow and steady, listen to your body, and wish you lots of luck.

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I'm with runswithdogs on this one, treat it as an interval run. There are lots of people on here who have experience of doing interval runs who could advise on what intervals to pick -maybe 5mins running:2 minutes walking. You should get round in a decent time and, more importantly, avoid injury too. Good luck 🍀


For what it's worth I ended up running at the end of the London 10k last year with a lady who had never done more that 20 minutes continuous running in her life before. She'd been persuaded to enter by some friends and was running 2 mins and walking 1 minute. I met up with her at 8k and we did the last 2k together, so it can be done. Time just under 1.10...so perfectly respectable.


I am 56 and started c to 5k in July having never run in my life. I graduated in September and consolidated my 5k runs by running 3 times a week and doing some park runs. last Saturday I set off for my normal 5k around my local forest but felt so good that I kept going. finished at 10.5k in a time of 58mins. Completely blown away by the whole thing.


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