The secret to running faster - revealed... - Couch to 5K

Couch to 5K
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The secret to running faster - revealed...

This week I had to change my running groove. My other half has disappeared upcountry (as we say round here) with the car. So I have no transport to get to my usual running haunt - the coast path by St Michael's Mount. I toyed with taking a sabbatical because of the hot weather, but decided I was being a wuss and needed to brave the hill out of the village. I extended my warm up walk to 10 -15 mins in order to walk the worst of the gradient and then I was onto some relatively flat, narrow, rural lanes.

Firmly plugged into my headphones, I was a bit trepidatious about being mown down by passing vehicles, but at 6am - not a single car passed me! The leafy lanes were cooler than the coast path has been, but the tarmac was hard on the knees. My new trainers felt springy and I tried to practise 'kissing the ground lightly'. I'm not really sure what I'm doing with this, so glad no one was around to witness it. I think I'm still in the category of 'fairy elephant', a description my mother frequently used to describe my 5 year old attempts at ballet - scarred me for life!

When was nearing the end of my intended 30 mins, I was feeling OK. It coincided with having to cross the normally busy main road, but at this time in the morning it was empty! So I carried on running thinking I would try for a 5k.

Reader. This is the point when I reveal the secret to running faster... The key thing to remember is that the last part of my run was returning to the village - DOWNHILL!! Who knew there was such a simple and effortless solution to improving pace! I shaved a whole TWO MINUTES off my previous 5k time. Ok, so I'm not breaking any records, but a sub 40 minute 5k? 39:27 in fact - I'm happy with that!

The only downside though is that my new trainers have given me a blister - just at the point on my nascent bunion where the support to my under-pronating foot ends.

Any tips? Rest it? Plaster it? Resort to my old trainers for a bit? All advice gratefully received...

21 Replies
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Aww, hon? Blister? Ouch. And in new tyres too. Owsie. Someone will pop up with some blister remedy in a while. I've got no clue.

I'm loving the "How to Run Faster" top tip. Don't know why anyone else hasn't thought of that one. Let's keep it to ourselves and just use it on special days tho.

xx

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New treads were fine on the first outing! Reckon it was this downhill lark wotdunnit.

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If it stops you running, I’m sure this is bad advice, I pop it (something sterile) and cover it with a blister plaster. That way I can carry on. Otherwise just use a blister plaster they are amazing 😉

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I’ll try that - just need to find the nearest stockist of blister plasters - not sure it’s a stock item in the neighbouring village shop!

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Once you have tried one you’ll be pestering them to stock some 😉

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Compede is really good x

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The "kissing the ground" bit, is that what the Pope does or what we all did when we had just completed our first 30 minute run?

Another useful tip for upping your pace, is to try and plan your route around where people walk their big, scary dogs.

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Ha ha! That would work!

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Im going to try that out! Hurts my knees though running downhill. I find with my bunions some footwear rubs and some never rubs. Luckily my runners are ok. And I've got walking boots made for bunion feet!

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I thought going downhill would hurt my knees, but i was going so fast i didn’t notice...😜

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The key, I have been told, is not to try to slow down - that's what hurts the knees, however if you go too fast then you hurt your nose when you fall. My old dad always said of scree-running (frowned upon these days) that the key was to be going faster than it was shifting....

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I think part of my motivation to not slowing down was that i was getting closer to home - i wanted to get back to my house before any of the neighbours saw me!

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I'm no expert, but a blister plaster, with silver (I think), might well be the way forward. As for keeping on, guess you have to do what feels right for you - sorry that's so unhelpful 🙃. I'd probably carry on, depends on the pain, don't like pain. Get those plasters though.

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With silver? Is that a special kind of plaster or the colour of the pack?!

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Well done Pippa! Hope that blister heal up quickly! I have new trainers, deliberately bought black for the rainy days, but I haven’t braved it outdoors with them yet. I’ve had blisters before (no running involved) and ouch would be putting it mildly. I can’t imagine running with one. So well done you! Especially for braving the uphill run! 😉

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I’m probably being a wuss! I should pop it, plaster it and get on with it!

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Think I’d be a wuss too if I’m honest! But I’m sure you’ll get on with it! ❤️❤️

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Ouch! I’m forever getting blisters when the socks come off and the summer sandals come out. I put a gel cushioned blister plaster over the blister and it prevents the back of shoe/strap rubbing and doing worse damage. Pretty sure Dr Scholl do them. Apart from your blister it sounds a lovely run. 👍

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Dr scholl! Of course - i think i’ve had them before. As you say, despite the niggle it was a good run - even in the heat!

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I’ve started getting a blister. Just the one in my left arch. I’ve discovered it’s from my £11 a pair fancy running socks. They’ve got a lovely padded heel and padded toe, but what have they got in the middle? Stitching. 😡

my wife got me some weird blister plasters, I’ll dig them out when I get home and let you know the name. It’s a massive (compared to the blister) flesh coloured oval that’s squishy like gel.

You put them on and leave them for a few days, I ran with mine on and it was fine. When the edges start to come up you remove it by stretching it away rather than pulling off at 90 degrees so it doesn’t pull the new skin away.

God knows why I don’t get one on the other foot, same shoe, same sock, same stitching. 🤔 should be grateful I guess. 😆

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Grrr - bad design really makes me cross! Especially when they charge a premium! Your weird plaster sounds just the ticket. Let me know the brand? Thanks

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