Couch to 5K

How do you know which route to run?! I'm about to try and hope to maybe... start C25K, but I don't want to end up 20 minutes from home!

I don't want to run up and down my road either, but I don't know what length of route to run or how I'd know.

I don't have a smartphone or anything I can do fancy apps with, so how would I know where to run?

New here so any help is really gratefully appreciated!

12 Replies

Laura does tell u when u reach the half way point, I just used to turn round and run home again at that point or do circuits of the village :)


Ah that's great - thank you! That's exactly what I needed to know!

Now I just have to face the 'people will laugh and point' fear and get out there!



Sorry about that rant Tiger79, I feel better now. I was like you when I first started, I nearly always went too far from home but it just meant that I had a longer cool down walk at the end, so no big problem. But try signing up for GoodRunGuide or MapMyRun there are a few out there most are free GRG is £10 a year after first month trial. These programs give you a Google map to plan out your route, so if when you first go out try and take time checks of your 5 minute walk and then approx half way mark, that will give you a bit of a starting guide for distance. But so long as your not stuck for time and running out of energy there will be no harm done if you do go too far. The other option of course is to do small laps, circular route and repeat them until finished, I never did mine that way as I thought it would be boring. I wish you all the best with the programme, keep us posted on how you get on too. :)


Another option is to go for a twig and leaf approach - doing loops off a main spine. Depends on the layout of your neighbourhood.

Worth trying different surfaces too (grass, pavements, dirt tracks) to find out what suits you.

It's a great way to explore your area as you go through the programme.

Good luck


I know has a loop planner. So you could plan your loop before you go out.


I found that I was running about 3.5km on my first few sessions, and I had found a loop that was approximately 1.5km, with some mini-loop possibilities within that.

If I did find myself finishing a bit away from home, you'll have been walking for five minutes or so anyway, so a little bit of extra walking can't be bad!

Don't worry about other people. I read on here, someone mentioned that when you're out and about, you see joggers, and more acknowledge that they're there, rather than paying too much attention to them. It'll be the same for you - and with Laura in your ear, you'll be concentrating too much on the catchy music, breathing, and carrying on, to notice anyone outside of your zone!


Mapmyrun is another great website. You can just type in your area, and the length of run you want then it'll give you other peoples routes (or you can sign in and create your own routes). From there you can always adjust the route, or go with theirs.

I'd be tempted to start off with a route just shy of 4-5k and see how you go. If you can get all the way around with a mixture of walking plus running then you can stick with it, otherwise you can adjust the size accordingly. It's free, so it might be worth having a look for ideas if nothing else!

Best of luck for when you get out there! Try not to worry too much about other people, at the end of the day there's not a runner out there that didn't start somewhere. We have all been red faced, sweaty and tired as we train: but it does get better if you stick to the program!


Thank you all, I really appreciate the help, I'll look into those websites later on.

I am now trying to work out some timings to actually get out there. i'm a single parent who works, so finding time when I'm not either at work, or picking up/with the children is going to involve some massive juggling. Anyone want to babysit?!

Thanks again, I really want to do this, I used to love running at school, and now apparently I love cake and sitting down more!


You can just plot a route on google maps, I've been using it to work out a loop before I go for a run.

Good luck with juggling your time so you can go running - you know you're worth it !


google "walk, jog, run" a great site where you can plan your run and it will tell you your speed, distance, calories used and even a profile of the hills


I've also just discovered Walk jog run net, it's brilliant.


If you have a few long roads near your house just keep running up and down them. I felt a bit silly running back and forth up these roads but you soon get over it. :)


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