Couch to 5K

Week 1 Run 2: At high speeds :)

Some of you might have read my previous rambling blogs, for those that havent, brief recap:

Completed C25K, dont really want to run for longer, thirty minutes at a time is quite mind numbing enough, but i do want to be able to do it faster.

I graduated with a run/shuffle of 7kph a long way from finishing 5km in thirty minutes.

When i did c25k the first time i weighed 304 pounds, starting it this second time ten weeks later i am now 260 lbs.

My aim of repeating the programme is to use the intervals to get my speed up to manage the 5k in thirty minutes. If I find its too much, i hope to at least get my general speed up.

Run one i did my intervals at 11 kph, it was a bit harder than i expected and the eight intervals seem to take forever to complete.

Run two, always one to shake things up, i pushed the incline to 1%. I didnt seem to notice it been harder, as the eight interval runs counted off it got harder and harder.

My heart rate seemed pretty good for the first four. It would jump to 165bpm on the one minute run, but settle down to just below 150bpm on the 5km walking sections. It seemed to recover a bit better than last time. This repeated each time. I suppose a good level of fitness would show recovery rates stable for pretty much however long the workout lasted.

Things started to get a bit uglier though from five onwards. The rest period increasingly became not long enough to allow my heart rate to get down to below 150. By run eight it felt like there was very little recovery from the seventh run.

That said, once finished i didnt feel completely out of energy, i pushed the incline up to 3% and did my cool down walk at 5.5km instead.

This kept my heart rate at about 155. I suppose that would be perfect fat burning mode.

I hate having to wait a day between runs, i just want to get out there and do them. I am in a quandary though.

Do I:

i) Carry on the programme, do one more run of week 1, and move onto week 2 and see if I can cope with the longer run intervals and shorter recoveries while maintaining the speed.

ii) Or, just go back to running thirty minute runs three times a week and slowly speed should just improve as you get used to it.

In terms of effort, it feels like i expend a greater amount of effort doing eight minutes at 11kph with ninety second intervals between each minutes than just running at 7kph straight for thirty minutes.

10 Replies

Gosh, you've done well with the weight loss.

As for the training, intervals are supposed to be best for increasing speed. Strength/resistance training in between times should help too. But it sounds as if you are spending a lot of time analysing and not much time enjoying.


I dont enjoy any of it! I enjoy the feeling of accomplishment. The analysing bit allows me to to take my mind off the awful thing i am doing to my body!

Yes, someone else recommended strength and resistance training. But i feel quite unsure of what to do.

C25K is easy, you just get on the treadmill and follow the podcast. When it comes to weights i understand the terminologies etc but dont know about the form.

My gym (which i am a very recent member of) does have some weights based circuit training. That might be of use!


I started the gym before I started this running lark ;) My trainer put me on pure cardio machines because he said for weight loss you need to do that first, and then do strength and resistance training otherwise youre just building up muscle under fat and you cant see it ( think thats what he said I was too busy admiring his legs ;) )

But yes, seriously, cardio first and then maybe now is the right time to move onto circuits. A friend of mine does circuits and weights only and hes put ON weight so definitely keep up cardio else it wont work! Good luck and I admire you for going to the gym cos I hated it and have abandoned it for now!


Why don't you mix it up a bit? Do a thirty minute run at a comfy pace for enjoyment and then an interval session to build speed. That way you get the best of both worlds.


thanks mair99, i was thinking of doing that. Do the three runs on alternating days as laid down, and do a thirty minute run. Then start week 2, do week 2 runs, and at the end another thirty minute run.

If i tried to do a thirty minute run and an interval run on the same day, arent i likely to result in an injury?


Yup. Not advisable... Space it out for sure. I meant on different days...

I recently did some interval running and was surprised at how fun it was but tough near the end. I had to drive myself a bit!


I think you're doing really well.

I've graduated 4 or 5 weeks ago and have decided to join a gym, partly cos a)its so hot running outside and i fancy a go on a treadmill! and b) think i need to do strength and weight training on top of running.

I did read somewhere that new podcasts are comong at the end of the month, not only for increasing pace/distance but for strength and flexibility too.

They should help all us graduates! :)

Whatever our goals!

Well done on the weight loss by the way x


I much prefer the treadmill. Did outside a few times, but it just looked like i was running for the bus or the chippie.

The gym (or, Gime, as Homer Simpson would pronounce it) is cheap and cheerful. They were offering a free day pass the other week, i went and tried it out. I was easily the largest person there, maybe x2, but i was scheduled to do my week 9 run 3 graduation run.

Stepping onto the treadmill, i had no problem completing it. Half an hour felt a long time, and there was a series of people who came and went on the treadmill while i slow and steady kept on pounding away.



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Thank you so much for bringing this up. I am in the same situation - shuffling along, not enjoying but feeling proud - at week 9 and wondering how to get faster. The 3 less-slow intervals + 4th longer run ("for enjoyment"?? right.) sounds perfect! You are my new hero - very inspirational for tubs like me!


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