Postgraduate advice? : Hello all, I have... - Couch to 5K

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Postgraduate advice?


Hello all,

I have graduated on Friday, woo hoo! But now I am very confused as to what happens next. There are a lot of posts, lots of options, lots of plans... It's great to have many options, but this is all a bit too confusing to navigate for a novice like me (even after reading IannodaTruffe's post) .

I know I should do a few consolidation runs, and I will do them. Eventually, though, I would like to run an under-30 mins 5k (nowhere near at the moment), and then progress to 10k.

But let's focus on the first goal. Should I build distance first, and then improve speed? Or improve speed and then distance? My experience with W6R3 (had to repeat it and had to reduce speed a lot to complete it) makes me lean towards the first option, but I really have no clue.

Advice, please ?

15 Replies

People say building your longer distances increases your speed over the short ones anyway, so I reckon your thought is on the money - increase distance first :). You've read the FAQ so you know to do it gradually (look up 10% rule in case anyone reading doesn't know) :)

Your first goal really is just those consolidation runs though. I hope you enjoy them :)

in reply to icklegui

Thank you!


I’m so glad you posted this. I struggled post-grad & got a lot of advice which was great- but I still don’t feel I’ve found my way or that I really know what to do! I’m very much a person who needs structure - I need to be told - “do this” “now do this” and how & when to increase it. I will be interested in the answers you get.

in reply to Hidden

Yep, me too!

in reply to Hidden

I think there are other podcasts called C25K+ with Laura coaching? Three different ones depending on which areas you want to progress. Only available as podcasts though, not apps, so you’re stuck with their choice of music. Not graduated myself so haven’t had occasion to use them.

in reply to Hidden

Completely agree with you Welshwitch. Post-grad has been tricky for me too ....and now the heatwave!!! I have managed a couple of 5k runs but, with the weather making it more challenging, I’ve just been running for the sake of running. Today I even went back to W6R2 as I’m just not enjoying the non-stop running at the moment. I felt better after today’s run than I did when I ran for longer. I think I managed my pace and breathing a lot better. I’ve signed up for Park Run but waiting until it’s cooler before I attempt it. I just like to have something to aim for. At graduation 2 months ago thought I’d be running 5k easily by now but it’s just not happening. However, I’m still running and that’s what’s important. Congratulations on graduating and good luck on your post-grad journey.

in reply to NJGam

Yes I’m exactly the same. I’m off to France in a couple of weeks & will re-evaluate then. Maybe you could try some of the podcasts? See Sallenson’s reply below as well - he’s very wise!


PS- well done for graduating! Congratulations.

in reply to Hidden

Glad to be of service, and congratulations to you too! 😊


My "non-wisdom": If you get the end of the original programme and are covering around 4ish KM, then do a week or so of 30-min runs and try out the C25K+ pdocasts (Stepping Stones, Speed and Stamina) in that order. Do a couple of podcasts a week and use the other "slot" for your standard" 30-min run (a W9 run). Then you're reasonably set for the ju-ju 10K plan.

If you're not near 5K or you find it really challenging, do a couple of weeks of straight W9 runs, then start to mix it up a bit.

The ju-ju plan works in terms of distance; if you're struggling with 5K you need to build up your distance first.

Most of all, just have some fun. Walk if you need/want to. Don't push it too hard. You're a runner now.

No race. Just have some fun and celebrate what you can already do...

in reply to sallenson

That seems structured enough. Thank you, sallenson!

And I know, I was very proud to graduate. It's just that I tend to lose motivation if I don't have structure or a goal to reach, despite really enjoying it. :)

There's also this available in the pinned posts

Whatever it is you decide to do next - enjoy


Neither... just run lots of consolidation is the name of the game. The new legs have only just begun building up.

Different routes, shorter runs, longer runs and plenty of 30 minutes in there... just do not push too hard too quickly.

The more you run the stronger you get and speed and distance do evolve.. ( not quickly enough for some..but that is the way to the IC)..

Follow the 10% rule as you move onwards... some ignore it... we would advise not..:)

After a couple off weeks or so of consolidation then the C25K + podcasts are useful.. challenging and fun .. but, yet again, folk do them too quickly after graduation... and miss the whole point of them. they are about discipline and supporting Speed and Stamina.

Many of our most awesome friends on here who are running amazing distances still use them :)

Take a look at this excellent post... again, tried and tested advice form the seasoned Graduates:)

This is your running path... but do not be tempted, especially by other posts.. to move too quickly to soon... just enjoy the whole thing and stay injury free:) yes we are all different, levels, age and ability..but slow and steady does work...!

Huge congratulations Graduate... !

in reply to Oldfloss

I consolidated for a few weeks I tried the podcasts too then went on to ju ju plan I loved the structure of c25k one for up to 10k would have suited me too.

Thank you everyone!

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