To repeat or not?: I’ve just finished W3R3 and... - Couch to 5K

Couch to 5K

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To repeat or not?


I’ve just finished W3R3 and for all that I managed to complete it, I’m so worried about Monday’s W4R1. I just don’t think I can run for 5 mins yet. The 3 mins this week was tough. Should I re-do week 3 again or give week 4 a bash? I genuinely don’t know what to do. Thanks for any advice.

33 Replies

Move on! Trust the plan! Just remember to slow down and slow down again!

Hidden in reply to Tasha99

Good advice, thank you. I need to get out my own head!


Did you think you could run 3 minutes after week 2?

If not, you did!

If you did, what’s the difference this week?

Week 3 asks you to double the running interval... week 4 only asks for 67% more... you can do it, trust the plan, believe in yourself and go slow and steady.

Hidden in reply to UnfitNoMore

Actually no, I didn’t think I could. I went into week 3 apprehensive too and managed it, albeit through gritted teeth. Thank you, more good advice. “Trust the plan” will be my mantra this coming week I think!

UnfitNoMoreAdministrator in reply to Hidden

Believe! You can do anything... you may meet a run that is impossible... right now I cannot run a marathon, but with work I will.

If you get to a run and try it and it’s not possible... that’s OK... the run you did made you stronger and after a rest day you’ll be closer and maybe do it... if not another rest and... you get the picture.

Running for 30 minutes is the aim... all that takes is a refusal to quit and some hard work. I did it... am I special? Nope, far far from it. You CAN do this... think that way, the biggest hurdle on the way to success is in your mind, that voice that says “I can’t do this”. That voice is a liar... that voice never tried... that voice likes the easy life... that voice is weak. You? You’re strong, you’ll take on the challenge, you won’t quit, you will succeed. Tell that voice to %#^* off... I did, out loud, in public... after checking no kids were around.

Go do it.

Hidden in reply to UnfitNoMore

Oh my goodness, I seem to have something in my eye! Thank you sooo much, wise words!! Really appreciate it.

UnfitNoMoreAdministrator in reply to Hidden

Enjoy your journey. I completed this with words from others... post on here lots, you’ll inspire others.


People say trust the plan , but don't forget the plan says it fine to repeat weeks, or repeat runs, and there is no shame in it. Wait till your next run day, and then decide; you might feel ready to go for the next one, especially if its a nice bright crisp and sunny day, but you might not. Its fine, you'll get there in your own time.

Hidden in reply to Hidden

I think I’ll give it a go but if I’m really struggling, will repeat a run or two. Thank you so much for the advice.


Go to week 4. I found Wk 3 tough and worried but managed the 5 mins and now just did a 20min this morning. Good luck

Hidden in reply to emct64

That’s fab! Well done you! Thank you


Ask yourself what information repetition will give you that you don't have now.... I think you'll find the answer is 'nothing' (and potentially worse than nothing... what if your repeated run because your mind is already having a bit of a wobble coincides with the bad run that we all have from time to time???)

Every run is a contribution to the aim of getting out there and towards improving fitness so it is never a waste. And there's no rush to get to the end of the programme because the programme isn't an end in itself. But emotional strength is like a muscle... no you don't want to overstrain it by being gung ho, but it does need to be exercised.

The programme is well designed... you could argue that one size doesn't fit all but within that programme, there's enough scope for variation: the way some people run on set days over the week so they have two rest days together, the pace we run at, cadence, hills, surfaces.


More great advice, thank you for your inspiring words!


If you complete a run and aren’t injured or haven’t taken too long out of running you are ready for the next one. Every single one of us has doubted the next leap, but it’s possible, and doable, if it want the plan wouldn’t be around.

Unless for some reason you don’t complete a run (we call those practices) or like I say you have to leave it for a while for whatever reason there should be no reason to repeat a run.

Trust the plan. It works.

Hidden in reply to glentoran99

Thank you. I can’t tell you how much this advice helps.


Like you I had finished w3 and was moving on to wk4 I found I a bit of a struggle and decided to repeat w3 which I've done and will move back on to w4 tomorrow. Just do what feels right for you and keep going 🤗🤗

Hidden in reply to Buddy34

Thank you. I hope you have a great run tomorrow too, we got this!


Go for it! You can do it! It’s more a mental challenge than a physical one good luck xx

Hidden in reply to Grotmeister

Thank you! I’m feeling much more positive after reading these comments!

Go for it !!! The negative voices are just your own thoughts and fears - it’s good to find ways of making them shut up - I used to swear at mine ( - not on here obvs) and I was pleased to find other people had them too - I still get them they popped up on my Parkrun yesterday about the 3 k Mark but I knew them and a quick burst of swearing 🤬 packed them off! Have a great week 4 and as Laura says - you can do this!!!

Hidden in reply to MandiV

Thanks, I’m all for a bit of internal swearing, will give that a bash!


Mini mantra... If complete, don't repeat🤩

Hidden in reply to Jell6

I like that, thank you!

Jell6Graduate in reply to Hidden

You're welcome, I can always come up with a snappy one liner, feel free to pass it on🤗


no just carry on you wont belive how easy it realy is it sounds hard but just trust the program and they always told me slow and steady just do it at your own speed and you will be fine honestlet us know how you go

Hidden in reply to paul1960

Thank you, I will update tomorrow. Feeling positive now!

GrotmeisterGraduate in reply to Hidden

That's great glad u feel positive now! I felt like stopping yesterday, looked at the app and had 6 mins to go and thought what a waste if I stopped now! Slowed right down and crawled to the finish line ;)


I did repeat because I lacked confidence and repeating made me feel more positive

However I think if I’d had more nerve I could have just followed the plan

Whatever you choose you win - you’re out there running not on the sofa 😊

Hidden in reply to blackcatgib

That’s so true isn’t it. Thank you!


Week 1 prepares for you for Week 2. Week 2 prepares for you for Week 3.

See where I'm going?

If you're ever worried about a run , remember that everything you've done to that point has prepared you for the next run.

Otherwise, how else would a plan like this work?

Good luck!

Hidden in reply to John_W

Thank you! I see where you’re going! Feeling ready for it now.


What a forum this is, thanks to everyone who commented and for the encouragement. I can’t wait to get out there tomorrow!


Honestly, I didn’t think that I could do a single one and I was seriously nervous before each run up until middle of week 8! I just put my trust in the program and did what Jo Whiley told me to do. And it worked, it really does work 👍

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