Why is the first 5 minutes always the toughest? Or is it just me!

Did run 2 of week 6 which is 10 min run/3 min walk/10 min run. The first 10 minutes was mostly flat and it was a real struggle. After I'd walked I was raring to go and actually ran for a further 2 minutes.

Wednesday's run is the 25 minute run which I'm more worried about than the 20 minute one.

Week 7 I am hoping to run during my holiday to Turkey next week - yay!



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13 Replies

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  • Yes for me the first 5 minutes is often the worse. Not sure why, maybe I am not really warmed up at that point, once I've got thru it the rest seems to get easier.

    Have a great holiday, have fun exporting c25k to Turkey!

  • Same as you the first 5 minutes are not easy. Think its not the physical challenge but the mental challenge as you know this is the start and will you make it to the end.

    Good luck with Turkish C25K, hope its not too hot when you run.

  • Now I'm doing longer runs (30 mins plus) I've really noticed how long it takes me to get into it - sometimes I don't hit that 'sweet spot' till about 25 minutes in (admittedly this may depend on how many hills are on my route of the day :-) ). But there is a huge mental oomph when you get to that stage and realise you can still go on. Actually it's one of the best feelings in the world :-). The best thing is that now you KNOW it's going to be tough but then get better, so experience can persuade you to push through it. Keep on trucking, C25K peeps!!

  • i was just about to post that question myself! the first 5 minutes (or even 8) seem so hard like I have no fuel to sustain myself on and my legs are like jelly. Like you, I was raring to go after that first 10 minutes and walking for 3. Is it the muscles warming up and trying to get their fuel from glycogen stores? maybe that does take a good 5-10 minutes of exertion before it kicks in?

  • Absolutely. I think for me it's a mental thing, I always start a run thinking there's no way I can run the full distance. But after 5-10 mins I start to get into a good pace and my breathing settles down and it just starts to feel easier.

  • Yes, I'm about to start Week 7 and I still think those first 5 mins or so of the run are the hardest. Don't think that ever changes.....

  • Thank GOODNESS for you guys!!!!

    I honestly thought it was just me being wimpy...warm up walk fine...laura says start running...so automatically my legs feel stiff and my brain says youre never going to make this...so i head for the next lamppost and then gradually i start to think of COURSE you can do it....

  • I read somewhere (sorry cant remember the link) That it takes the first ten minutes of a run for the oxygen levels to build up to the optimum level to fully feed the lungs/blood/muscles etc and from then on we are oxygenated enough to keep going.......sorry not a medical sort but this makes absolute sense to me as after 10 minutes feel have passed the worst bit !! Also psychologically when I get pass the first 10 minutes feel ready for the run in full...

  • That is interesting, I have been finding the breathing worrying for the first 5 mins or so, I feel really wheezy especially on the out breath but by 10 minutes I have forgotten all about it. My PE teacher sister in law has also told me that it takes about 20 minutes for the body to adjust to the demands of running but after that settles down into the rythm of what is expected of it.

  • I find the same thing - I usually spend the first few minutes wondering if I will have to slow down in order to complete the session but I think I've always managed to slightly pick up speed later on. I always try to make the last minute or two of each run faster than the rest too. On the week 5 20 minute run I knew within the first minute or two of running that I'd be able to complete it and I ended up not wanting to stop but, strangely, the two week 6 runs I've done since have felt tougher to start with, but I've managed to pick up pace a little and feel more relaxed after the first run of each session.

    Like you, I'm looking forward to doing the week 7 runs while on holiday - but I'll be in Northumberland, not Turkey ;-)

  • I thought I had become an addict wanting to run on my rest days, but now hit week 7 third day due tomorrow and struggling to find the motivation I had. The last 5 mins my beathing gets all out of sink and I start panting! anyone else having this problem?

    I have changed my route and this has helped and will continue in the hopes my motivation returns.


  • Having just got back from WK5R1 I was wondering the same thing. I found the first 5 minute run harder than the second two and the last one even had some uphill in it (what a killer!) I am glad its not just me and I will push through it!

  • Yesterday I was working with someone who was an ex marathon runner (3h05) who said it is normal for you to feel at your worst up to 15 minutes in. After then your body looks for alternative resources of fuel and sets itself up properly. Once you power through the wall, it will not get any worse and may even get better.

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