Couch to 5K
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Has anyone else failed W5R3 at the first attempt?

Hi, this is my first post, I've been following everyone else and you're keeping me motivated.

It was my big W5R3 today and I was feeling quietly confident after reading about everyone else that had managed it.

I got to about 12 minutes and had dropped to a slow shuffle, I lost the cycle path I was following, the road started heading uphill and I just couldn't go any more. I dropped to a walk for about a minute then ran the rest.

I'm trying not to let it get me down, I've run further than I ever thought possible, my route was about 4K and I'm confident I'll manage it next time but I was so looking forward to a big high.

8 Replies

So you ran 19 out of 20 minutes with one minute walking in between ?

What were you running 6 weeks ago?

Come on, don't beat yourself up.

Next time, pick a new (flat) route, and remember to start very, very slowly.

Make sure you're hydrated...and you will be fine.

Let us know how it goes :) :)


I only managed about half the first time too - I was so disappointed I know how you feel! I tried it again on a treadmill and that was fine and the next time I did it outside I manged it - everyone has bad runs

If you are running in the same place could you try running back the way you came rather than carrying on up the hill to make it easier?

Good luck!


I'm so sorry you've had a rough time. It sounds like you went too fast perhaps, so that means that going slower you'll definitely make it! I've yet to do the 20 minutes (hopefully Friday or Saturday) but I can't yet imagine what it's like. I guess we need to focus on what we've achieved so far, going from a ghastly 60 seconds to this!! You'll do it next time. Chin up, be proud of yourself, go slow, go flat and have faith in Laura! Good luck. We're all in this together.


I didn't make my first attempt and was gutted....a hill got me too! But as gypsydepp says it's still further than you've done before. You've done really well and am sure you'll rock it next time...pick a different route and slow right down...if you've anything left you can speed up at the end. Good luck and let us know how you get on


Definitely avoid the hill for this run. Take it nice and steady. You did most of it this time and that's quite an achievement. If it were me I'd now go back to the start of week 6 again and work up to the 20 mins run. I'm sure there's a reason why week 6 starts with shorter runs again. And remember that you're doing brilliantly. You can run so much further than you could before.


Oops. I meant go back to the start of week 5 again.


One problem I've seen with many training programmes is that that there is little or no mention of the difficulty that you will experience when faced with even the slightest slope. One valuable piece of advice I picked up was to focus on maintaining constant effort rather than constant pace. Don't worry if you slow down to nearly walking pace. it's never about how fast you go, it's about getting there in reasonable shape whether you face a twenty metre slope or a marathon. Hope this helps.


That's a very useful tip! When you live in a hilly place, this is important! Thank you for bringing up the subject and the advice.


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