Week 6, Day 3 - new to this community and STAL... - Couch to 5K

Couch to 5K

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Week 6, Day 3 - new to this community and STALLING!!!

Pilks47 profile image

So thrilled to bits to find this community and just in the nick of time. I have been frankly amazed to have got as far as I have (formerly a non-sport person but having done six months of Joe Wicks HIITS from January to June this year) but! This running lark is not getting any easier. There is no way on God's earth that I could possibly have a conversation and do any running at all - so don't understand this easy pace concept at all!! Do you think I should go backwards a bit in the program and concentrate on running slower (I am pretty darned slow as far as I'm aware anyway) and try to build up cardio fitness/leg strength/stamina?

So far I haven't dropped a single run and completed every single one to the second (bloody minded!) - no injury, pain, or stiffness the next day - but lung burning knackeredness and a general desire to stop pretty much all the time.

LOVE the satisfaction of finishing and perhaps the first couple of minutes!

All thoughts gratefully received! Four hours till decision time . . .


18 Replies

Hi Pilks and welcome to the forum. Well done on getting to Week 6 of the program it sounds like you are doing fine.😊

You say you couldn't hold a conversation, which sounds like you may be running faster than a steady sustainable pace. I always start my run at a slow pace til I get past the first 5 to 8 minutes (the time it takes for your body to take on enough oxygen to cope with the exertion), then you can relax a bit and let your running flow and still have enough to get to the end (just😆)

Your breathing is something that develops once you get this run and the next ones done, but unlike HIITS, you are not going for the burn, just learning to run for a prolonged period and if in order to do that you need to run more slowly, that would be my suggestion. No need to go back to redo the plan just go forwards with a smile and a gentler pace.😊

Good luck with that run...

Thank you so much for such solid advice - and it worked!

ah that explains my often struggle points between 5-10 mins and its all breathing related, feel like I am too out of breath to continue. I slowed down today and it really helped, good to know!

Indigogirl profile image

I think, if you've managed all of the runs so far, however slowly, you should keep moving forward. Have a stab at W6R3...it may turn out to be a practice, in which case that adds to your stamina training anyway...or it may be the one that you absolutely nail! You never know until you try! Just keep it slow and steady, and be thankful that you're running on your own so you don't have to chat! (There were lots of dog walkers in the park where I ran this morning - I was dreading any of them offering me a polite "good morning" as I wouldn't have had the puff to respond😂).

Let us know how you get on!

WhiteJog profile image

Awesome effort and I love your perseverance. You are making more progress than you realise. Finishing each run, however hard it feels, is the key to building your fitness. Keep completing those runs and don't lose that bloody-mindedness. Good luck!

AJ2804 profile image

Well done. I've just started week 8, and it's only now that I manage to have some sort of conversation while running. Good tip from Bluebirdrunner about the oxygen getting round your body - I didn't know that! Oldfloss on this forum is a great proponent of "You can always go slower" if you're finding it a struggle, and I found that helped me. My average time per km is over 9mins (which is nowhere near 5k in 30 mins), but I am doing the runs, and I tend to enjoy getting to the end, more than the actual running. I'd stick with it if I were you, it really does make a difference to your fitness - in your case it sounds as if stamina is what you need to improve (am very impressed you have no aches the next day!). Don't go back, just carry on, and maybe slow down a bit. God luck, let us know how you get on.

Pilks47 profile image
Pilks47 in reply to AJ2804

How exciting that you are in Week 8! And interesting that the conversation thing has only just kicked, marvellous. Great advice thank you - I don't use a fitbit and the mapping on my app (I use 5k runner by Fitness 22) doesn't work 100% but I quite like that at the moment - I haven't quantified my speed (or lack of!).

AJ2804 profile image
AJ2804Graduate in reply to Pilks47

I use the free map my run app, i start it when i start running (after the 5min warm up) and stop before the warm down walk. I think it works off your phone's gps. I'd quite like to work towards the Parkrun, but think I need to work on stamina and speed before I do that! Good luck for getting to week 9 and beyond.

Hey I'm only just starting week 2 tomorrow. I think you're doing fantastically. I'm not experienced enough to offer any clever advice, other than if you've done the other week 6 runs, then you've already done nearly that amount of running within half an hour. The only difference is it's in one go.

NOT speaking from experience here, but I reckon that the 5 minutes walk in the middle probably isn't enough to recover fully anyway, so I would go for it, but don't rush. I'm not bothered about speed at all. The first run I did I was barely running faster than I had walked, and felt like giving up after 30 seconds. But believe me, you can actually push through. For me completing run 1 was stubbornness!!

Anyway, best of luck. Please do let us know how you get on, success or failure. And one failed run doesn't mean you've failed, just rest and try again in a couple of days, or go back a run. No shame in that at all.

Take care, Neil

I read a fantastic article which said something along the lines of ' if as a beginner runner you can recite the complete works of Shakespeare then you are running too slowly. If however you struggle to string together just one sentence then you are running too fast..' so your happy pace is somewhere between those two extremes. Now it's slightly silly, but that does make sense, if you can't even say a word then you probably are overdoing it. One problem I found was that as my fitness improved slightly, I started out just that bit quicker and like the dodgy batteries in the Duracell bunny adverts, I ran out of steam quickly.

If you've done all the runs so far then don't go back always look forward. Just put your mindful hat on and see if you can temper the speed a bit, particularly at the outset.

Very well done you have a happy run later

Your idea of slow may not really be that slow for someone half way through the plan. I don't know what this joe wickes is all about, but it could be that it's intensive, and you might feel like you are just 'plodding' along too slowly when running, but I have seen so many joggers and runners going at different paces at different points it pales into insignificance.

Week 6 is kind of where the transition from 'crawling' to jogging comes in , in my opinion. Week 7 and 8 are really interesting parts of the couch25K plan. I don't think it is a good idea to go back on yourself, just set off for week 6 Run3 at a pace slower than you were running at before. If your lungs are burning then you are probably not going to slow for your body.

I find with this couch 25K plan it's all about balance. People will tell you to run slow which is advice that you can't argue with. Sometimes your lungs are maxed out and other days its your legs that will feel that they can't give anymore, the trick is to just make sure you finish, if it says run 25 minutes; then do so. It doesn't matter if you don't get far. The desire to stop lessens but it always returns, and that is part of the satisfaction of getting to week 9, that you don't stop. At some points of the course in order to make sure that I did it without stopping I was running extremely slowly but it is part of the challenge. If wanting to stop is a recurring theme which spoils your run, think about a park run, or changing your course now and again. I would say that the wanting to stop feeling is pretty normal and week 7 I remember I had that feeling a lot. I didn't stop on any runs but I took out 2 extra practise runs as it was when the weather was hot (so I cheated in other words) but I didn't stop or give up on any of the runs of the couch25k plan,I think that is the most pleasing aspect of finishing week 9. Weeks 7 and 8 allow you to get there, its a very well put together plan

Whatsapp profile image

You are completing each run, so far so good. Don't adjust your pace, don't go backwards.

Personally I believe this whole 'conversational pace' thing is nonsense. I struggle to talk if I am walking a bit fast, other than a few words - I certainly don't want to be holding a lengthy conversation.

If you are getting to the end, you are running a sustainable pace. If it gets tough, slow down. Whether you can also have a chat whilst doing this is irrelevant.

Oldfloss profile image
OldflossAdministrator in reply to Whatsapp

Good advice there:)

Oldfloss profile image

Building up strength and stamina in conjunction with the running days is essential!

Core strength exercises are really important...work out a daily regime for yourself, it needn't be too long, but do it.

Do not go backwards... move on... but, do it gently... as Bluebirdrunner says... start slowly and stay slow...You do not need to talk... ( except to the voices in your head.. or is that just me?) Breathe steadily as you relax into these longer runs... :)

I coined the phrase, happy pace...it comes...so let your running legs take you steadily onward...until you feel that happen and if you relax into the runs it will.

Don't overthink things.... we get too wrapped up in, should do, the only thing I would say , should do, to, is slowing down and doing those exercises...this is meant to be enjoyed ...:)

ejvcruns profile image

Well let's see. I could never ever hope to have a conversation while running, TBH I can't even understand how that could be a thing. I reckon if you're completing the runs you're doing fine. In my opinion the lung burning is the first phase and the leg burning is the second phase. the bloody-mindedness is useful throughout.

But, one thing I have found *really* useful is to constantly tell myself to relax. When I relax, my shoulders go down, my breathing evens out, my stride opens up, and I go faster with less effort. It really makes the running much more pleasurable.

So happy to report that it is mission accomplished! Thank you thank you THANK YOU for the advice and encouragement. Relaxing and slowing down made the difference between binning it off and getting Week 7 Day 1 DONE!

Bluebirdrunner profile image
BluebirdrunnerGraduate in reply to Pilks47

Yeah...we knew you would do it😄x

Indigogirl profile image
IndigogirlGraduate in reply to Pilks47

Excellent, well done you!

(I was going to ask earlier today had you managed it, but didn't want to hassle...😄)

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