Couch to 5K
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Sore throat, slight cough . . . any other excuses not to run today?

But I still did it! I had a 7 mile run due. Now I had managed 7 miles a few weeks ago when I was due to do 6 but that was a bit of a blip (and the last three miles were down a gentle slope!).

I had it all planned. Early start, drive half hour to the coastal path where the 10k race is being held in two weeks time so I knew exactly what the course was like (mostly flat but undulating in parts I am told)

Then I developed a very painful sore throat Friday afternoon plus a cough but was determined not to let that get me down or affect my running plans.

I stayed home instead of rushing round like I usually do on Saturday, mollycoddled myself a bit, took plenty of hot lemon and honey, only walked the dog for an hour and a half instead of the full afternoon planned, and had an early night.

Woke this morning, very dubious that my lungs were up to the task but decided to try. Stuck to the mostly flat local canal path instead of driving to the 10k course as I thought it would be a bit stupid driving all that way if all I could manage was a mile or two before having to drive home!

Well. . .you know the first 10 mins of all of my runs are tough and then I hit my (slow!) stride?. Well, I'm not gonna lie to you! Today every minute was tough!

I had to use a lot of mental strategies including

imagination (pretending I was actually doing that 10k charity race & my family - including my younger sister who is planning to drive 440 miles round trip to come and support me on the day - were cheering me on!),

bribes ("1 more mile and you can have a Jelly Baby!" or "if you finish you can have sherry trifle after your carvery lunch"!)

threats ("if you wimp out now, how are you going to face Fran?"- Fran is my big sis who was doing a cheeky 15 miler up and down dale at the same time I was doing my run!)

reasoning ("well you've run 3.5 miles, you may as well have a go and run the 3.5 miles back to the car as it will take you ages to walk it!" )

positive talk ""wow, you've managed x miles, you can do this!" (repeated ad nauseam)

the counting trick - count slowly up to 50 - repeat as necessary!

Funnily enough although it was a struggle, as in, my legs felt tired all the way through, my breathing wasnt' quite right and it was just HARD WORK, my heart rate was still showing as in my "easy" run range, so that was comforting.

Oh, and the blessed cool weather and fine drizzle was a bonus!

4 Replies

My goodness, you have a great deal of determination!! I'm sure I would have whimped out. Well done to you for completing it and under such tough circumstances, you had every reason to stop at any given moment.

It's lovely that your sister is travelling all that way to support you on race day, that will be 1 massive push for you on the day.

My first 10k is in 7 weeks and I'd like to be able to run all the way, at present I can run 4 miles constantly, any further and I'd need to do intervals of run/walk (I'm upto 6 miles doing a run/walk). Did you do any interval training to get to 7 miles or did you just keep extended your long run each week? I started with intervals but I prefer to just extend my run by a little each week.


Thanks x

I am following a plan downloaded from Runners world. For a couple of weeks I only had to do 3 x 2 m runs but then it added a mile once a week most weeks, till it got up to 7. It also incorporated 1 tempo run in the last 3 weeks before "race day". There was 1 interval session which I "failed" at :-( . But with hindsight the distance required was far too demanding for a 1st intervals session - 3 x 800 m sprints for heavens sake! The most I could do was 1 x 500m and 1 x 300!

I always try and end every run with (my version of) a sprint so hope that will do!

You are doing brilliantly. If you can run /walk 6m now you have plenty of time to build up the run intervals, and even if we have to walk during our events, that often gets a better time than struggling to run and running slower! (in my case I would be going backwards then!)

I am only praying for cool conditions lol, Those few weeks of heat nearly put me off running for ever!


well done you. You are being sooooooooooooooo good


Ta. I never ever would have said I had it in me before C25K! I was a serial giver upper!


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