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Couch to 5K
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😟 Too much too soon methinks. Gutted

So close to finishing, and I think I've gone and scuppered things temporarily.

Wanted to do Wk9 R2 yesterday, but I'm also itching to do a Park Run. Everyone I spoke to said 'Go for it', 'You'll be fine' blah blah - and I've seen posts on here from folk who've done Park Runs before they've completed all 9 weeks. So decided yesterday to extend my run, so that I ran the full Park Run course - just so that I knew I could do it before Saturday, and not be a complete embarrassment to myself. Took lovely MJ with me, did my own 5 min walk, then ran through the whole thing (5+30+5) and a bit more on the end. Yes, I completed the course, in 45 mins, but it was a struggle, and I was too stubborn to put in a couple of walking bits.

However, in the last 1-2km, I started getting a twinge just underneath my shin bone - but not too bad, so carried on. After the run it was a bit more painful, and now just feels like a bruise if I press on it. But, the pain has moved down my leg, and there's something going on in my ankle, which I've now got strapped up. Walking is ok-ish. (Driving is fine!). Going upstairs twinges, but going downstairs is extremely painful!

Somehow, I have that feeling that my Wk9R3 run is going to be delayed, and Park Run will be a couple of weeks away.


10 Replies

I am so sorry. We usually recommend that you walk anything over 30 min when doing your first park run before graduation. You can still pull it back rest up, ice and heat and hopefully it won't be too bad. Parkrun isn't going anywhere, it will be ready for you when the time is right. Take care Rfcx.


Thank you - will be more sensible from now on!


So, the thing about Parkruns is that you CAN walk for some of them. My recommendation - once you are healed and if you still want to do a Parkrun - is to do your normal session at the Parkrun. So, either do what I do which is to walk for five minutes just prior to the start so I'm warmed up OR walk the first five minutes. You will not be the only one doing it. That is why there is a tail walker - there is always someone walking even at my Parkrun which is not at all user friendly for beginners because of the hills and terrain - and therefore largely attracts experienced runners. Once you have walked the first five minutes then do what MJ tells you and, when MJ tells you to stop running and do the cooldown walk, do that. You may need to extend your cooldown walk to complete the 5k but that's ok, just do it gently.

Parkruns are amazing things and I believe they really come into their own for either beginner runners, run/walkers or just walkers. The super fast guys that finish in 5 minutes (slight exaggeration) are not what Parkrun is about. Parkrun is about people who would not normally run a 5k having a go. The biggest cheers are normally reserved not for those coming in first, but those coming in towards the end. When I did my first Parkrun I was so worried about being last but two things here. Firstly, you will never be last - the tail walker will. Secondly, it actually doesn't matter - truly. Parkrunners are mostly generous and kind in spirit and nature and they know that whether you run 5k, run/walk 5k or walk 5k, it's still 5k and it's still way more than the average person will do and they celebrate this in an uncondescending and truly supportive way.

I am always at the back - normally in the last 10 or so runners - with a PB (on flat course) of just under 39 minutes. I will admit that I get a tad cross and upset with myself because I want to find it easier. Then I remember my husband, my sister, my work colleagues, the majority of the UK, who could not run 1k let alone 5k. I try to keep things in perspective.

Even though I've graduated, I cannot run my entire Parkrun - it's too hilly with very challenging terrain. It amazes me how many runners lap me and give me a "well done" or "keep going, you can do this" even though I've never seen them before in my life! There is nothing like Parkrun and I can understand why you are keen to do them - but make them work for you - not the other way round.

One last word. I got injured before I was graduated - for doing too much. You'll miss MJ when you graduate (I still listen to him sometimes) make the most of him and just follow the programme - in the long run, you'll finish it quicker than doing too much, getting injured and having to take time out.

Good luck - speedy healing!


Bless you. Thank you for your lovely supportive post and encouragement. Lesson learnt!!


It doesn't sound like too bad an injury. Sometimes we need to do this things just to realise we're not superhuman! Just rest up and you'll be back in no time!


Great post you!

1 like

What a great supportive post. I also injured myself today so I read your post as if it was aimed at me too. Thank you.


I learned the hard way. I never - and will never - break the rest day rule, even now, but on my rest days I was doing long and challenging walks - and it was too much too soon. The good news is that you should recover (I'm not a Dr so don't this as bona fide medical advice) as long as you rest and, weirdly, the rest never seemed to do me any harm. Apart from the blip from doing too much walking, I completed the programme injury free - and this is a miracle. I over-pronated very badly, I have two messed up metatarsals in my left foot after breaking them five years ago and I have dodgy knees. I never thought I would be able to run without injury - and I am. You'll be fine - just give your body a little rest!


Unfortunately a phrase that we hear too often.

Thank you for posting this. It will act as a warning for others tempted to push too far beyond what they have already comfortably achieved.

We graduates, who urge caution are not just a bunch of nannying stick in the muds. From first second and third hand, we know that injury gives little warning, is horribly frustrating and always comes from some part of your anatomy being asked to do more than it is either used to, or designed to do.

Rest up and when it feels right try a gentle jog. Probably something less than thirty minutes. I have been out for a couple of weeks with a dodgy knee and my first run back, hopefully next weekend, will be no more than a very gentle 3.5k and less than that if everything is not tickety boo. The 14k run I had been planning before injury will have to be built back up to.



Lesson learned!


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