Looks like it's going to be Couch to 30 mins rather than 5k!

With my last run of Week 7 waiting for me tomorrow, I've started thinking about distance rather than time. Up until now, I've just concentrated on running for the required amount of time but earlier this week I started to wonder how far 2.5 k would take me before having to turn round to go back or circle home.

By using Google maps, I worked out how far that point is - and I have as much chance of reaching that point in 15 minutes as flying to the moon at my current pace.

I started getting a bit despondent to think that after all the work over the last couple of months I wouldn't be achieving the 5k goal even at the end of week nine - but actually, on reflection, so what?

Perhaps the goal of exercising for 30 minutes regularly is greater than achieving a given distance. Later, I can increase my speed gradually (I hope) or, rather than pushing for longer runs after that (Bridge to 10k), I could concentrate on making that distance in 30 mins. I dunno? What's better, speed or longevity?

Anyone else come across this old chestnut or am I the only Captain Slow? :-)


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38 Replies

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  • Captain Slow? That makes me General Slow. 30 minutes running is the important target, the distance covered is just a bonus. At graduation I was doing 3.3km. I'm now doing about 4km in 30 minutes so speed does come with time.

  • It's ok, many people don't graduate at 5k, but they do graduate at 30mins. (Couch 2 5k just sounds better!!๐Ÿ˜‰)

    Take as long as you need post grad to consolidate your 3 runs a week. Time enough to make the speed or distance decision later. ๐Ÿ˜€ (There's C25K+ podcasts)

    I'm half way through B210k and I already know I prefer speed, so I'll be happy to do 10k, but I've no desire to go beyond that.

  • The aim of C25K is to run for 30 mins...I know..confusing๐Ÿ˜‰

    But C 2 30 was not,as catchy! Many of the Graduates do not do the 5K in 30 mins in nine weeks..many still haven't๐Ÿ™‚

    The idea is,by the end of the programme to be able to run for three runs of 30 mins...comfortably๐Ÿ™‚

    Get to the end of the programme...speed and or distance can follow, if you wish.Lots of paths to follow...your journey..your way ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Thanks, I didn't realise that! Nothing like embarking on something where you don't understand the objectives! :-)

  • True.. I did not realise it when I did it, either! Duh.. I did feel a bit of a twit :)

    But, because of that.. I did actually graduate doing 5 K in 30 minutes!!!!!

    After Graduation however I pulled back, and did quite a lot of runs, just for pure pleasure, simply because I could run... with no time in mind no distance... Then when I was ready, did the C25K+ podcasts.. and then just tootled along on Bridge to 10K .. doing what I felt like, until magically, and surprisingly...! I made 10K. Took over a year though :)

    Running for me will always be about pleasure..I love to run and then, to write about it... I don't have a desire to run in races, or break any records..:) My running week comprises a short 3K a favourite 5K and something a bit further..usually 7 K up to 10K.. but I really never think consciously about speed, unless I am trying a particular running skill.

    Thing is, when you have graduated, it all starts... and you have this path stretching before you... it is amazing!!!

    So, week 8, here you come.... onward and upward, and take it at your own pace :) Look forward to your next post !

  • Most people don't realise it ...... why would they, it's not in the title or description. ๐Ÿ˜ƒ

    That knowledge is one of the "secrets" of this forum. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  • I graduated in April 2016 and STILL can't do 5k in 30 minutes. I'm starting to think that maybe I never will but also that that doesn't matter! I'm not in a team sport where anyone else is depending on me to be marvellous!

  • I graduated a year ago and can't and don't want to run 5k in 30 minutes! My fastest I think is 34 minutes. I prefer to let my fitness and stamina build itself by regular running. I run 2 x 6 km and a 10 km a week now, pretty satisfied with that. I think we all have individual goals and sometimes there comes a point where we are satisfied

  • You do right!

    I only did 5K at graduation, because, dozy little snail that I was...I thought I had to I think it was Ully, who pointed out to me that I did not have to run 5K just to run for thirty minutes.. but I had done the first thirty minute run then :) So I just carried on.. duh!

    I think after Graduation I did not make 5K again for ages, but then I never tried to :)

    The best bit, is the , doing it our own way, our own little challenges.. and most of all enjoying it!

  • That is the best bit, we do this our own way, all different! :)

  • When I graduated, I just did 3 x 30 minutes but it wasn't long on a good run, that I just kept going until I did 5k and it took me 43 minutes. After that I changed to run 3 x 5k and that kept me busy for quite a few weeks!! Running 30 minutes three times a week apparently results in "significant health benefits" according to Doctors. Just settle for a while because the C25K programme is a safe way to build running stamina and 5k is just around the corner!

  • Hi Tractorman - I graduated this week nowhere near 5k. At my present speed I reckon I'd take 45 minutes to do it. So the plan is to continue 3 runs a week and add 10% a week to my time till I do the 5 k in a few weeks' time. I figured I'd then work on trying to improve my time. Basically it means there are still goals to work towards which helps with motivation. Slow and steady hopefully means injury free, which is really important. Good luck as the journey continues.

  • Very few people manage 5K in 30 minutes at the time of graduation and some people will never get close to that sort of speed. That's fine.

    Speed and stamina or not separate things at our level. Building stamina allows you to run faster for longer - if that makes sense.

    After graduation, many of us try to gradually increase distance with one longer run each week. So something like two runs of 30 minutes (or 5K :) ) and one longer run every week. Every time you go out and run, you will get a bit stronger and improve a little bit aerobically so you can expect to continue to progress rapidly for a good 3 or 4 months after graduation.

    All the best.

  • I have just graduated and in 30 minutes I can run around 3.6km. The fact that I can run for 30 minutes seems a miracle to me, so I'm only now trying to increase my distance......very slowly!!! Stick with the times and then worry about distance once you have graduated!

  • Ha! 5k for graduation? Colonel Slow here๐Ÿ˜‚ I'm still the company tortoise but I don't care! My graduation run was just under 3k!

  • I love that we have a company tortoise. All companies should have a tortoise. :)

    (PS If we do have one it probably isn't you by the way).

  • I've also only just graduated, and am only running just over 3.5k in 30mins (on a good day) so you're definitely not the only slow one out there. Last night on my run i decided to try and do a shorter but faster run, and 7.5k/hr feels fast to me! I cant even imagine being able to consistently run for 10km/hr for 30minutes! But then again I never used to be able to imagine running for 30mins continuously either and now I can do that thanks to this program!

  • I think you will be chuffed to bits when you make graduation and can run for 30 mins non-stop.๐Ÿ˜Š I was. Its a great acheivement and the distance covered is not important.

    Once you can do this regularly, you can enjoy starting to build on it if you want to run further, or mix up your running with shorter and longer runs. The important thing is to build stamina which is what the c25k plan does by getting you to 30 mins, and consolidating that.

    Keep going...you are getting there.๐Ÿ˜Š

    I have recently started to increase my distance using the B210k plan, but sometimes just do 30 mins (not 5k) and its all good fun.

  • You are doing really well and you're definitely not Captain Slow. I still can't run 5k in 30 minutes, but you will be so delighted when you can run for a full 30 minutes non stop. So, don't get concerned about the distance, enjoy the journey of time and you will probably become faster as you get fitter. Strangely enough, my 5K time improved when I was running a 7K. I suggest you consolidate your 5K and then if you fancy it, slow and steady to 10K, but keep a check on your distance covered, as you should only be increasing your distance by a maximum of 10% each week. Happy running to you! ๐Ÿ˜€๐Ÿƒ๐Ÿผโ€โ™€๏ธ๐Ÿƒ๐Ÿป๐Ÿƒ๐Ÿผโ€โ™€๏ธ๐Ÿƒ๐Ÿป๐Ÿ˜€

  • Thanks to everyone who's come back on this one. I have to admit to thinking it was important to achieve the time AND distance in order to graduate. I now feel more comfortable about going into weeks 8 and 9 without the niggle of not being able to make the distance within the time.

    Several of you commented that there was a time when you didn't dream you'd be able to run for thirty minutes regardless of how far you went and I was exactly in that position two months ago. It says a lot for the C25k programme that I'm even thinking about how far I'm going to run! Just the buzz of getting to the end of the run is really the best feeling I've known in a long time... Should you ask for any more?

    Onwards & upwards - and thanks again.

  • The name is the problem. It sticks 5K in your head a a goal right from the off. I don't agree with people who say it is Ok to name it C25K cause it sounds better, that's like labeling butter as 500 gms when it weights 454 gms.

    But it is - how to run for 30 mins from not being able to run for 1.

    Maybe "0 to 30 in 9 weeks" - the accelerated running plan lol

  • I think there were other programmes around before the NHS presentation which *were* predicated on speed and being able to run a 5k in 30 minutes.

    But it is a good illustration that despite Laura (and presumably the celebs voicing the new app presentation) making it quite explicit what the goals are, people don't take that on board.

  • I have to disagree. I know exactly what the goals are for the podcast I am listening to at the time. In this weeks case, that is to run for 25 mins, end of story. However, if you are in a program called C25k, I don't think it's unreasonable to expect to have to reach 5k by the end of the programme. Or perhaps I AM being unreasonable? :-)

  • Well, you had the option to bail at the beginning of Week 1 when the actual goals were revealed if it was more important than learning to run :-) ... but you didn't. Thank goodness.

    I do agree that it is a problematic name.

    Most people do go on to achieve 5k, taken there by all the 'Death to Small Furry Animals' events [you'll note I am not a fan of the official obfuscatory name for those], Parkrun etc (which is perhaps a reason in favour of keeping the name as it is, the NHS has a vested interest in people learning to run safely and with the best chance of success long term)

    The irony for me is that achieving 30 minutes, achieving it regularly and achieving 5k is something I have cracked... it's the couch bit I still can't do. I like watching the BBC nature Watch programmes but find an hour on the sofa night after night when I normally spend most of my time in bed is still really gruelling.

    There are also people who would not define what I do as a 'run' because they'd reckon I am too slow. Those are the up themselves fussers and botherers that made me assume that I could not be a runner and would not want to be anyway. (My Fitbit is an arse about it too)

  • Hey, perhaps you've identified a gap in the market! "5k2C" for running addicts who need to reconnect with relaxation! Watch this space :-)

  • Oh I think there are a number knocking around these forums who know they need this! But at least they have a choice...

  • Don't worry about it, my first 5k was about 37 minutes, took me 6 months after graduation before I broke 30 minutes and I've only managed it once! :-)

  • You are doing great, graduation is just around the corner, yeaaaaaah! Have you thought about downloading an app to track your runs at all, will give you time and distance. I use Mapmyrun which is free, but there are many orhers too.

    Keep going runner๐Ÿƒ๐Ÿปโ€โ™€๏ธ๐Ÿ˜€๐Ÿƒ๐Ÿปโ€โ™€๏ธ

  • Yup, good one. I've downloaded Strava but I've run into a few issues using it with my Fitbit AND the podcast. I need three hands and two phones coz I need to start the Fitbit, the podcast AND Strava all at the same time. To be fair, the Fitbit Charge 2 should auto-recognise the activity but I'm still new to it all and consequently I'm manually starting the run recording. Oh yeah, and while I'm doing all that trying to warm up and avoid white van man (slight lack of pavements around here).

  • Quite some while ago someone posted a nifty calculator where you could input your age, sex and weight and it would show you a realistic 5k time to aim for. And for me (and many of us here given our age) it was more than 30 minutes.

  • That would be great. Was it based on a sundial? :-)

  • Entirely possible for my first 5k...

  • Www.run bayou.com has a calculator. Apparently average time for someone my age (55) is 17 mins 34 seconds. Think I am going to set my goal as just running for 30 mins, regardless of distance or speed ๐Ÿ˜Š

  • Very few people do the 30 minute 5k on graduating.... I certainly didnt but I achieved it after 3 months through doing the speed podcasts etc... you are quite right to focus on your time running, speed can come later if indeed you want that.... :)

  • Actually, after this morning's run, I think I'll concentrate on achieving the ability to breath after 30 mins full stop. What a shocker! At one point, just putting one foot in front of the other seemed almost impossible. I had a bad night and only got a couple of hours sleep - seems that that's not a good precursor to a good run!

  • I think the point is that if you can run for 30 minutes you will almost certainly have developed the ability to run for 5k regardless of how long it takes you to do the distance.

  • Hi there. I did wk7 day 1 today i downloaded app 'Run keeper' to see how long I ran in 25 mins it showed I did 3.1 k. I'm not sure I'll do 5k either. I'm with you 30 mins is better. look where we were 7wks ago it's amazing what we've archieved!!

  • Well done on your first W7 run! Dont worry, a month after graduating (ie running for 30 mins) I've STILL yet to run 5k - but I'm not bothered!

    4.8k in 41 mins has been my best. It's (very) gradually getting quicker but who cares on days like today? (sorry if you didn't have the lovely Spring weather).

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