Decided to use C25k, planning week 1. Which ro... - Couch to 5K

Couch to 5K

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Decided to use C25k, planning week 1. Which route planning app is recommended?


Good morning,

I have not started the programme yet, but am looking to get everything ready. I have seen a lot of different route planning apps mentioned, but is there a consensus on which is the best one to use (or at least a shortlist)?

Preferably a free app. I also use the Fitbit app for step and cycling tracking, as well as the MyFitnessPal app for food tracking, so if anything integrates with these, it would be useful.


16 Replies

Strava lets you plan routes and you can also feed your Fitbit data into it. I’m starting to use it to track my runs instead of my Fitbit Blaze - especially in the rain as the water / wet clothes tended to trigger the touchscreen on my tracker and stopped if tracking my runs.

Whilst you’re figuring out how long routes need to be for your pace you could always just turn round and head back the way you came at half way 😀

RobW73Graduate in reply to tony_a

Thanks for the feedback, I might start with that.

MyFitnessPal I think is on the UnderArmour stable of apps - so in which case the standard app integration is for Map My Run....

RobW73Graduate in reply to Jancanrun

Thanks, I'll have a look.


If you read the guide to the plan it mentions several apps that may be useful, but frankly they are not at all necessary to complete the course and too much tech seems to get in the way of a lot of people's enjoyment of running, judging by the number of grouchy posts about being let down by technology.

Keep it as simple as possible.

RobW73Graduate in reply to IannodaTruffe

Thank you. I hadn't found that startup guide.

My concern is that I live half way up a hill and potential routes near me involve a lot of gradient, so I'm looking to minimise that in the early stages.

I'm not averse to using technology, but if I can find a flat, linear route, I will use the "turn back at the bell" technique.

IannodaTruffeAdministrator in reply to RobW73

For planning purposes you might find Maverick useful. It gives you access to all Ordnance Survey maps free of charge as well as basic tracking ability.


This is actually quite a tricky one. There's a good argument for not using one at all yet, because, contrary to the name, this is not a distance based programme, it's all about time and the level of coaching means you'll know when you are half way and can simply turn back at that point. We *so* often encounter people who have undermined themselves by looking at stats which are not relevant.

All of that said, as a graduate of the programme I use Fitbit but don't use it to GPS track my runs, and I use MyFitnessPal but don't use it to record activity other than eating. For run tracking with GPS I use Runkeeper (the free version) But I don't tend to plan my routes all that much, more of a nose follower!

RobW73Graduate in reply to GoogleMe

Thanks for the feedback. I am not really interested in gathering running statistics at the moment, as the Fitbit can approximate that. I was looking for something that can help me plan a route that will minimise the gradient.

GoogleMeGraduate in reply to RobW73

I live half way up a very steep hill in a hilly area so decided get myself to the flattest places rather than run from the house (although I had already decided I wasn't running on roads or pavements anyway)

OS Explorer maps are useful... I did use Walk4Life in the past for online access but full features are now £5 a year (cheaper than an OS subs if you don't want paper) and I am not sure how robust it is these days.

RobW73Graduate in reply to GoogleMe

Thanks for your reply. I am not a big fan of hills; when cycling to and from work, the hill is at the end of a four mile ride and leaves me breathless...

I have worked out a way of using the 5 minute walk at the beginning to walk up the hill to a flatter area and wing it from there.

I have looked at the Map My Run and found some useful looking routes that other people have drawn up near me. In due course, I may try those, as the total distance is shown.

To start with, I'll go to the flatter part and go linear to the bell.

Thanks to everyone for responding to my post.

IannodaTruffeAdministrator in reply to GoogleMe

GM, have you looked at Maverick, a free app providing free access to Ordnance Survey maps.

GoogleMeGraduate in reply to IannodaTruffe

No, but I shall be looking at it now, thank you.

It's not an app, it's web based, but I'll just throw another suggestion in there for pre-run route planning: :) Options of lots of different sorts of map, can have it click to paths (not just roads, yay!) or draw it yourself. You can make it work out the route for you, tell it to add a loop in, shows elevation, return to start, loads of stuff if you just play around with it... You can plan infinite routes for free, but only save 5.

RobW73Graduate in reply to notoutofbreath

Thanks, I'll take a look.

MapMyRun showed me some nearby that other people logged.

As always, this shows distance, so will need to set up an "out and back" route until I complete the programme.

Thanks for the tip.

notoutofbreathGraduate in reply to RobW73

Depending on where you live (i.e. how popular it is, rather than my arse end of nowhere), plotaroute will show other routes from folk. On the righthand side it has a timer you can then feed in what time you're starting and your pace and do it that way. There's even a play button that makes it zoop around the route saying when you should get there. Of course this still has you at the "but what the heck IS my pace?!" problem, but hey, like you say, useful for later! :P

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