Uphill and Downhill!

Hello all.

Virgin poster. So please be gentle!

I am actually following a slightly different plan because I didn't see the NHS one earlier enough but it is very similar and wondered if someone could advise...

I reached the stage where the plan had me (ignoring warm-up/down) running 10, walking 3, running 10. I managed this on my usual flat route although it was hard. I thought I might have reached the stage where walking, jogging and staggering a Saturday morning 5k park run might be possible for me. So for my next run (supposed to be 15R, 3W, 5R) I thought I'd try it on the route of my local park run in Halifax. But after 6 minutes of the first stage I was zonked! The undulating course was not something I'm used to and it really knocked my confidence. I went out and did the 15, 3, 5 on my usual course this evening but I realise I'm miles away from a ParkRun. Any suggestions ?

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8 Replies

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  • Only pointers are to sick with it and increase with small incremental changes and you'll get there in the end. I started with Couch to 5k this time last year and couldn't run for more than a minute to begin with. I stuck at joining my local running club who provided the Couch to 5k. I've just ran five miles this evening through woodland in just under 45 minutes. Keep chipping away.

  • You might find that when you are with other people you are able to run further and for longer than you can on your own. Also, there is nothing wrong with a mixture of running and walking - some people walk the whole thing! [There will be more people on here with better advice than me, as I haven't actually made it to a Parkrun - yet - because I haven't had a free Saturday morning for ages!!]

  • Thank you for the replies. Much appreciated! I do have a habit of wanting to run before I can walk (pardon the pun). A few weeks ago I couldn't run for a minute so I guess I just need to keep with the plan and gradually crease the uphill bits gradually as suggested.

  • Hills are tough. I avoided them until after I graduated. Then I started running them one out of three runs until I built up some confidence that as long as I take them slow and steady there really is a hilltop at the end :)

    You may want to check your pace also - both on flats and hills. I still have a devil of a job not starting off too fast despite a lot of practice, Just this morning when I would have sworn I was taking it easy I did my first two laps of the Park in twenty minutes instead of the much-more sustainable 26 or 27....

    Basically though - just take it all nice and easy. It takes time to build up the stamina you need for sustained running. Speed will come later - it is so easy to unwittingly fall into the trap of 'must run faster to reach X before I run out of steam'

    I did a different programme to the NHS one - the Zen Labs one. Is that what you are doing?

  • You are never 'miles away from a parkrun' as it's perfectly acceptable to walk it all, run bit walk a bit, walk a bit jog a bit.... however you feel able to get round. You will never be last as there is always a tail runner. You should give it a go regardless of what happened today and you will then have a marker for future improvement. If the course is undulating try just walking up the hills to start with and run the bits you can, trying maybe to run little further up the hilly bits every time, eventually you'll be able to do the whole lot running in one go. parkrun is for everyone......

  • Thanks for the advice. On the park runs... I actually went to watch the Halifax parkrun a couple of weeks ago and a volunteer lady was shouting out to those that had walked up the particular steep bits that it was time to start running again.... I'm sure that sort of encouragement works for some but I'm a bit shy and wouldn't like that sort of encouragement. I will wait until I can be sure I can run all the way before joining in.

    With regard to the plan.....I downloaded an app named 5k by Fitness22. Its an 8 week plan and I have just finished week 6 ( it has taken me 8 weeks because of dodgy knees complaining!) I had to pay 3 quid to open up weeks 2 to 8. The timings seem very similar to the NHS plan on the whole. My next run is one which is non-stop for 20 minutes and I will definitely be atempting that on the flat on my all weather pitch. There's not many flat places at the top of the Pennines!

  • Somebody should have a word with that woman. That kind of behaviour really pisses me off. I'm a solitary sort of runner and no expert on Parkrun but from all I have heard from others here, it is contrary to the spirit of the event. No wonder you feel put off.

    You could dump your plan and slot yourself in on the NHS version. I'm sure Laura of the podcasts won't mind you showing up late 'cos you went to the wrong room ;-) There are some very special treats in those later podcasts it would be a pity for you to miss out on, eh folks?

  • Look at hills as resistance training Mshaunb ! I'm further up the Pennines in Teesdale, and learnt to embrace the hills early on - price we have to pay :) !

    I have done a couple of Parkruns at Darlington and find the whole buzz and chatter of everyone participating really good fun. No-one is there to judge you, everyone just does their own thing whether that be walking, running, pushing buggies, Nordic walking. I run with my earphones in listening to the NHS C25K Stepping Stones podcast ('our Laura' is great) as I find that she pushes me, so can't hear what the volunteers say anyway. Why not give it a go, see what you think, and if you don't like it, don't go again, if you do, then you'll find yourself going back again and again. Whatever you decide, good luck...xx

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