Eventually getting to 5k in 30 mins: I have just... - Couch to 5K

Couch to 5K

118,017 members149,151 posts

Eventually getting to 5k in 30 mins

TreezyPeazy profile image

I have just finished week 6 and realise that I will be nowhere near 5k when I get to complete the 30 mins. I think I'm more likely to hit just under 4km. Any tips on what I'd need to do next to actually run the 5k in 30 mins?

18 Replies
Irish-John profile image

Darn few graduate with 5k, or in nine weeks :)

Slow and steady will get you to 5k without injury though. For me I think it took three or four weeks after graduation :)

Oldfloss profile image
OldflossAdministrator in reply to Irish-John

,,, and many never achieve it :)

Irish-John profile image
Irish-JohnGraduate in reply to Oldfloss

I sure haven't :) 33 and a bit is my pb :)

newrunner56 profile image

Don't worry too much about nailing the 5k in under 30 mins - 4k is doing well! And then you can start building the speed later - I graduated (second time !) mid March, and am gradually getting faster, and you will too

Jigglemooce profile image

I've just completed week 9, 30 minutes but if I don't count the 5 min warm up and 5 minute cool down I'm running 3.7k in the 30 minutes. Like you I wanted to run 5k in 30 minutes but realise now that it will come with Practice.

Madge50 profile image

I graduated about three years ago, I have not run 5k in 30 minutes yet, and am highly unlikely to do so, however, running is a routine part of my life, i run twice a week, I have gone down at least one dress size, I completed my first half marathon in March this year.

The key of the plan is to get you to run for 30 minutes, not necessarily to run 5k in 30 minutes, but you'll be well on your way to hitting that distance.

Slow and steady gets you to the end of the plan, speed comes with regular running and other routines such as the stepping stones, or speed podcasts.

You'll get there if you want to, but don't be too hard on yourself, 9 weeks is a very short time for your body to learn something new.


Oldfloss profile image
OldflossAdministrator in reply to Madge50

Yeay... Go Madge50 .. we keep saying it don't we? I know folk think I am always going on about slow and steady to reach the 30 mins, but I really do believe it and agree with all you say.

I have replied to a load of posts this morning, with folk worrying about getting to 5K in time!! I mentioned, too our incredible our half marathon and marathon runners who have not reached the perceived magic 5K in 30 goal and how amazing they are...!!!

Very well said you!!!! x

Joy57 profile image

I agree with the others above. 5k in 30 minutes is unrealistic for a new runner. It may come with time and lots of mileage but for me, like Madge above, I may never get there. It doesn't affect my enjoyment of a good run though.

resolution profile image

So to answer your actual question on how to get to 5k in 30 mins, I most often see the Stepping Stones podcasts recommended for graduates. Not sure what they entail, but you might want to look into that!

If a 30 min 5k is your goal, then the logical next steps would be to keep doing the 30 mins 3 times a week, then do on of your sessions as interval runs focusing on speed.

Obviously it depends very much what distance you are doing when you graduate. If you are upwards of 4 or 4.5 k then it's not going to take much work, and may just come organically.

For all we nag people not to obsess over the distance and reassure that most people don't achieve it during the programme, there are a good number who do. I don't think I did, but I wasn't far off, and hit it within a coupe, of weeks just by keeping on running and increasing naturally. There is one person doing the programme at the moment - Absent Owl, I think- who was apparently busting out 5k in 16 minutes in W4. Although that is almost unnaturally fast.

We're all different.

For those who are just starting off, I find the "couch to 5k"-title a bit deceptive. It's really not about the distance, it's really about the duration. For someone who was a couch potato, 30min of running is really quite bloody awesome. Afterwards, you can keep running those 30 min or longer (endurance), or mix them up once a week with HIIT (high intensity interval trainings) -- they will get your muscles stronger and prepare them for higher velocity. Also, i thought i read somewhere that shortening your stride and increasing the amount of steps could help with increasing velocity? Rignold? (how to tag someone?!)

Keep up the good work, happy running!

50up profile image
50up in reply to karotti

tag by using @ then the name - no spaces. It should self populate a dropdown list, use arrow keys to highlight and hit enter. Or just @ and type out the name in full :)

Hidden profile image

I graduated nearly 3 years ago and I've never managed it. Still happy to be able to run though.

wez70 profile image

Yep ... I think it really means following to programme will GET you to 5k for most of us, not that you WILL get to 5k in 30 minutes in 9 weeks ... however, there are some whippets out there who seem to be able to achieve this but for me, it was never about speed, it was about building stamina and still is ... my 5k came after graduation in reality so I wouldn't worry ... just keep up the good work with actually getting out there and look forward to the days when you'll just run without times in mind or much thought at all, rather just seeing where your legs will take you (remembering they've got to take you back again obviously!!) :-)

Oldfloss profile image

Yes.. take the advice from the Graduates' replies... you don't have to do the 5K in the nine weeks.. some do, some don't, some never do :)

I did, but only because I thought, (duh) I had to! Not until much later did I realise I did not have to...but I did it by just moving slowly and steadily through the programme doing everything by the book.., simply because I was so new to running.

I am one of the biggest advocates of the slow and steady mantra, ( a lot of folk think I am a pain about it) .... it may get some folk to 5K in nine weeks, it may not..but it is all about enjoying the journey!

So... stop worrying about the distance, you are doing wonderfully, so just carry on, steadily and really embrace the path to Graduation :)

Withitmum1 profile image

Thank you so much for asking the question...I have been worried about this. So glad to read all the responses. I'm at Wk 7 Day 3 my second time at C25k and I would like to do a real 5k eventually...but am worried about coming in last! Thanks everybody.

W7r2 for me tonight and nowhere near 5k. It's also taken me about 12 weeks to get this far! Hey ho! Still running -and last week Laura told me I am officially a runner -never thought that would happen! Slow and steady -25 minutes non stop -wow! Couldn't do 1 when I started!

Curlygurly2 profile image

3 years on and my best ever distance for 30 mins was 4K, and that was only once! I usually do about 3.8K in 30. Do I care? No! I'm happy with my running, I toddle along enjoying the scenery....if anything I've got slower.....

You may also like...