Success or epic fail?: I have completed the... - Couch to 5K

Couch to 5K

109,845 members141,982 posts

Success or epic fail?


I have completed the whole 9 weeks and ran for 30 mins. However I was misled into believing that wasn't a successful graduation as not 5K!! I now realise that this was a misunderstanding, the goal is to run for 30 mins, mine has always been a light jog all during training. Therefore I am repeating the 9 weeks and trying for a better speed. It will never be 5K in 30mins but aiming for faster/longer finale.

33 Replies

Whoever told you that doesn’t have a clue! This, and what it does for your fitness, health and life expectancy is all about those minutes... no other numbers matter. You’re a graduate of a tough but doable plan that’s turned you into an awesome new runner. Around 10% of graduates do 5k in 30 minutes... and I’d hope that 89 of the other 90% couldn’t care less!

Trying to add speed to achieve distance isn’t the best way to go... many injuries lie down that route. The best way to get quicker is to relax and do plenty of slow running, push one run longer than the others... and then in time shorten another and do some speed sessions. This article from a top coach and ultramarathon champion is seriously good reading if you want to get quicker the safer, easier, more enjoyable way.

Congratulations on graduating... enjoy some consolidation work and then you can start working on getting to 5k (and beyond) and then bringing your PB down.

Success or epic fail? Nah... you are a victory!

What a lovely response and thank you for lifting my spirits! I shall take your advice and thank you again for the encouragement x

UnfitNoMoreAdministrator in reply to Target5K65

No worries... if you’d like a plan to help you on your journey, our sister forum, Bridge to 10k has a magic plan in the pinned posts. It’s designed to have you go up to 10k or 60 minutes... the timed version of it would be pretty good to follow either to 10k or 5k and a faster 5k. First, it’s advised to do some consolidation, so go run 30 minutes at a time, at a conversational pace, until it becomes comfortable/easy.


Yeah what a load of nonsense, it’s only called C25K because it’s easier than saying, Get off your backside and go and exercise for 30 mins, 3 times a week 😂

Congrats on the graduation 🥳

Target5K65 in reply to Dtay1978

Ha ha! Thank you very much x


Whoop whoop 🙌

Well done indeed!

Deserved graduation 🎓 🏆. I hope I follow in your footsteps 👣

Thank you! Ups and downs - struggled towards the end but suffering a cold didnt help. Never in a million years did I think I'd get this far. Not bad for a nearly retired lol!


Many congratulations on your graduation, fellow runner.

This guide to post C25k running may be helpful

Keep running, keep smiling.


How about renaming your post Epic Success 😊 because that's what completing C25K is, an epic success! 🥳 Just think where you were 9 weeks ago and feel immensely proud that you have had the guts, strength and determination to complete a programme which constantly challenges you. My friend who has run 3 marathons and coaches at a running club told me not to underestimate how good being able to run for 30 mins non stop is 😃 I was nowhere near 5k when I graduated a couple of weeks ago (I'm still not!), but at the age of 48 have dramatically improved my fitness levels, health and weight and found an exercise habit that I hope to sustain for life, that's an epic success in my book. So give yourself a huge pat on the back and allow yourself to feel proud, you've just done something amazing 🤩 Keep on running fellow graduate 😃🏃‍♂️👍

Thank you so much for your support. My challenge was to complete this before my 65th birthday this Tuesday coming - so yes, indeed it was a success and I shall take the advice to carry on at whatever speed I can manage. Off the couch, that's the main thing!


I do just over 4K in my 30mins and although eventually I’d like to do 5K for the moment I’m just happy I can actually run for 30mins! 🏃‍♀️

Newbie59Graduate in reply to RWgirl

Me too, slightly over the 4k in 30 minutes but I am hoping that after a month of consolidation runs I might get a little bit faster. It also depends on the route taken, if the wind is in your face etc. I'm not bothered with stats, I am just so pleased to be a runner.

RWgirlGraduate in reply to Newbie59

Ditto! 😊

The sky is the limit for you now. Just respect your knees and go for it.


It took me a good while to teach 5 k after graduating.. I now can run 5 k but it takes me just over 40 minutes. I got there by moving over onto Bridge to 10k mentioned by UnfitNoMore and this had helped. Also try joining one of the consolidation groups run by the administrators. They really help too . Good.luck and happy running 🏃🏃


Hi, I'm the same age as you, just finished my final run, and am on a massive high! Why would you be down on yourself when you've achieved so much in such a short time?

Target5K65 in reply to Newbie59

Down because I thought I'd failed - as my post said. Plus I'm a jogger not a runner.

AngelpoppyGraduate in reply to Target5K65

Have you seen the Japanese Slow Runner video Target? It transformed my idea of what running is. Take a look, you'll see that what you think is 'just jogging' not running is most definitely running and probably better for us more mature runners 😃

Newbie59Graduate in reply to Target5K65

I agree with AngelPoppy, I never knew the difference but now I realise that jogging and running are the same thing. I will never be an antelope, and I class myself as a slow runner :)

AngelpoppyGraduate in reply to Newbie59

🐌 United 😘

Tortoise or hare? 🤣

AngelpoppyGraduate in reply to Target5K65

🤣 I'll never be a hare but slow and steady wins the race eh 😊


I started this malarkey 2 years ago at age 63 and can confirm that 5k is very doable at 65 - I regularly do it a couple of times a week but I’ve accepted I’ll never do it in 30min!! Am I upset? NO! This week I did it a bit faster (8 seconds 🤣🤣🤣) than I’ve done before and that was a great triumph. It’s easy to get caught up in numbers but remember all the talk of times on here doesn’t take into account ages as not everyone mentions age alongside. I’m not saying 65 year olds can’t - of course they can but as a non runner (ever) in 2018 till now I can only call my achievements amazing ☺️. And so are yours. Happy birthday too. 🎉

Newbie59Graduate in reply to Sybilw

Absolutely, and if you do Parkrun they do some sort of age comparison thingy with the results, so it is a way of comparing your running time with everyone else

SybilwGraduate in reply to Newbie59

Age grading %. I LOVE it, it’s very kind to older runners. I’m currently #1 on my local parkrun (non)parkruns this week. Just saying 🤣 It’s the small victories.

Newbie59Graduate in reply to Sybilw

Thanks, that's what they call it!

SybilwGraduate in reply to Newbie59

My best friend 😆

Target5K65 in reply to Sybilw

Wow! That's amazing too! Given me the motivation to just keep going - thank you everyone

SybilwGraduate in reply to Target5K65

Glad to help. 👵🏻🤣


Definitely a success! Remember W1 run 1 and that first actual instruction to run - think how you felt after that compared to how you feel after your 30 mins run - it’s an awesome achievement and don’t let anyone try and say otherwise!!!! Don’t force speed - we’re not all Mo Farah or Paula Radcliffe - we’re individuals that run for fun (mainly!) follow the bridge to 10K programme and build up strength - pace will follow...


You are a star for getting to this point in the programme - very well done! It's a big achievement whatever distance you're making for now. Speed and distance will come, with regular running - but having said that, even just carrying on running regularly will bring its own rewards : )

You have done absolutely brilliantly. Think back to those early weeks and the effort involved. Just take it steady and enjoy your running.

agreed, I am not sure I will ever get to the designated length but I have been able to complete the times. I am now on my second round of training and I do find I am going faster than last time. I suppose I could just keep repeating the last two weeks, but I find it more fun to re-do the whole series of workouts in order

You may also like...