I am new here on Week 2, looking for advice how to use C25K to enable going further

Four weeks ago I joined a friend for a 5K Parkrun, which for me was a walk as I was very unfit and I realised I had no idea how to pace myself. I was determined to try again and the following week someone recommended I try C25K to learn how to pace and to build stamina. I downloaded it and have completed week 2 run 2 (which was a bit of a struggle). I have used it to pace myself on the last two Parkruns, but would appreciate some advice on how best to manage it. It took me 47:25 to do the 5K last week, which means the 20 minutes of walk/jog runs out half way round. Is it best to just keep repeating the pattern until I finish, or can anyone suggest what would work best please?

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11 Replies

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  • Everyone's different, but I decided not to parkrun until I had completed C25K and then managed to run 5K comfortably. I wanted to make sure that I had the best chance of avoiding injury. I am due to volunteer at my local parkrun before I actually start participating.

  • For most people, the key to c25k is to run slowly. The program is designed to stretch you but as the runs get harder on paper, your aerobic capacity and leg strength are building.

    There is no harm in doing Parkrun but in all honesty the last thing you should be thinking about right now is your finishing time. Focus (through c25k) on building the stamina to be able to run 5K first and find out how fast you can go later.

  • Thank you. It is not so much my time I am worrying about, more using the C25K to help me manage the distance. I never honestly thought I would do anything like this and think I ended up doing it backwards, but at least I am having a go :-)

  • OK understood. Running 3 times a week including one Parkrun (where you walk most of it) is absolutely fine.

    Bear in mind that the amount of running you do increases week by week in c25k so that by the time you get to week 6 or 7 you will be running most of the way and at the time of graduation you should have the level of fitness to be able to run all (or very nearly all) of it.

  • Welcome to the group. We're here to help you achieve your ambitions, can hold you accountable and give you advice and encouragement when you need it.

    I'd suggest following the C25K program to the letter. That means 3 runs in the first week, doing Podcast Week 1 three times. It is a walk-run program, and will allow your body to adjust to running, building both stamina and endurance, whilst strengthening your body for more running. The program has been widely successful, and has got tens of thousands of folks running for 30 minutes at a time.

    So, you can use C25K at parkrun. I'd suggest simply starting the podcast when you start, and then the first 5 minutes will be the warm-up walk. After warming up, the podcast will transition to the run-walk sections, and eventually (after about 25 minutes, depending on the week), you'll be told to do the 5 minute cool-down walk. You won't have finished the parkrun at this point (podcast is about 5+25+5 minutes long) but just extend your cool-down walk 'til you get your finish token.

    Make sure that you run 3 times a week, and allow one or two days recovery between runs.

  • This is a brilliant and sensible reply. Do this.....and good luck with your progress.

  • Thank you. I didn't really want to give up going to Parkrun as I think that helps motivate me, but I also didn't want to push myself to overdo it. I will take your suggestion and not overdo it when doing the Parkrun, but will also continue doing my other runs on Monday and Wednesday, which then gives me two days recovery before the Saturday Parkrun.

  • I'm 58 vey unfit but have just graduated and only because I followed the programme

    I wouldn't have progressed at all on my own

    Keep going well done on your park run but I will wait a few weeks before I attempt one

  • If you want to continue Park Run's, then just incorporate that into your C25k. Ie. Run Tuesday, Thursday, and Run 3 can be done at your Park Run. I suppose that will be a nice way to monitor your progress.

  • Whatever way you go, enjoy yourself 😀

  • Thank you all for your replies and encouragement. I still have a long way to go, but never thought I would get this far. I am so pleased I found C25K as I don't think I could have managed it on my own.

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