Confused about warm up / stretches : So... - Couch to 5K

Couch to 5K

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Confused about warm up / stretches


So yesterday I began my journey with W1R1. Nearly gave up half way round, but very proud of myself that I kept going. 🙃

Today I’m a bit stiff! Mainly around my groin / inner thigh muscles on both sides 😮

I just did the 5 minute walk either side of the runs (jogs!) to warm up / cool down. Should I actually be doing stretches before and after in addition? Keen not to add too much time, but grateful for any advice.

Thanks for reading!

18 Replies

Hi, I was the same after my first run, but after the second I was fine. I only do the brisk warm up and cool down at the moment but I think as I run more I will look to do more stretching but don’t really know where to start and like you don’t want to add too much more time to the routine. Good work with your first run! When are you going again? 😀

MummyTumGraduate in reply to Bee_beside_the_sea

Thanks for replying 😊 Good to know I’m not alone! Going again tomorrow, but worried it will feel even harder if I’m still stiff 😕

How far are you through the program?

Not long started, did my third run this morning. My fiancé keeps telling me to listen to my body and if I hurt not to do it. I’m sure he’s right but I want to stick to my nominated running days otherwise it will become easy for me to stay in bed and think ‘nah, I’ll do it tomorrow’!

MummyTumGraduate in reply to Bee_beside_the_sea

Keep going! 👍


Please do read the essential pinned post for explains all about the stretches etc and gives so much useful information.. A brisk warm up is usually fine but post run stretches are really helpful and there is a link in that post.

Also, do begin some non impact exercise on some of your best days too..all of which will be really useful.

Well done you..and welcome!

MummyTumGraduate in reply to Oldfloss

Thanks for the pointer to that super helpful post Oldfloss 😊 Really good to know about post run stretches. I will try some tomorrow!

Hiya, well done on starting! I’m wk1 too, my running friends advised that I should stretch more after the cool down, as I had groin pain and hip problems. So last night (run2) I did some stretches briefly before and after, focusing on stretching out my muscles around my hips pelvis and arms. Definitely felt a difference! Slept much better too 😃

MummyTumGraduate in reply to George24

Thanks George 😊 Well done to you too! Will try some post run stretches tomorrow.

Yeah, I slept really well last night having done W1R1 yesterday morning 😴😀

George24 in reply to MummyTum

My children ran with me too, it’s a great thing to do with the family, although the dog isn’t used to it so he kept running after me wondering what I was doing 😂

Hope the stretches help, I found after having my second that some of my muscles had weakened so physio advised me to build up core strength slowly. I’m doing Pilates in a couple of weeks too, hoping that helps me regain some strength. 😊


I did the NHS Strength and Flex podcasts on my rest days and found them really helpful - still doing them now, in fact. Well done you for making a start ⭐️

MummyTumGraduate in reply to ButtercupKid

Thanks, I’ll take a look! 😊

ButtercupKidGraduate in reply to MummyTum

Hope they help !

Hi, well done for keeping going, it seems to me you’ve tried to run too fast. Try slowing down the jogging for the next run and you’ll be amazed how much easier it is. Most beginners jog slower than they walk!

MummyTumGraduate in reply to CouchDweller

Ah, that’s really helpful! So the jog can actually be slower than the walk? (I did think I was trying to take on board the advice to go slow, but maybe it needs to be slower still...)

Thanks for replying 😊

OldgirlrunsGraduate in reply to MummyTum

In answer to your question MummyTum - yes. I’m a good example- my brisk walk is faster than my jogging speed!


Welcome to the forum and well done on getting started.

This guide to the plan is essential reading and includes advice on stretching.

In my opinion post run stretching is far more important than pre run, as it pulls out contractions in your muscles which avoids carrying them into the next run and improves recovery.

Enjoy your journey.

MummyTumGraduate in reply to IannodaTruffe

Thanks IannodaTruffe! 😊


Great for getting started. For me lots of walking really helped on rest days to keep all the joints loose😊

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