Couch to 5K
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8 year old coming running?

So I actually managed week 5 run 3 on Saturday (Yay me) but now the summer holidays are here and hubby works away in the week so my running time is restricted.

My 8 year old son has said he wants to run with me to keep me going (bless him) and we have to go and walk the dog anyway but I'm not sure what would be best - do I just carry on with Laura and let him start and stop as he wants or should we just do our own intervals and I do a Laura run at the weekend? Or I suppose I could go back to week 3 or 4 maybe and start him from there.

He is so keen and I don't want to make it too hard for him and put him off. Has anyone else got this "problem"?

7 Replies

ive finished the plan but son of 10 wants to start it. perhaps as he sees me & 2 of his older sisters who have completed the plan go out for a run.

anyways, we will be starting from scratch tomorrow morning. not sure how he will go. I would say he has no trouble running around but having to run for set intervals may be completely diffferent.

I wasnt sure about taking him out as I thought he may be too young but have seen another blog about this being a family affair & blogger was taking his 10 year old out who was managing fine.

I think I will see how he goes but definately start at the beginning. if he manages them without even breaking into a sweat I may not repeat all of the runs for each week & move him on quicker until he does break into a sweat! I do, however, plan to keep running 30mins 3 times a week if possible & may bring him home & then go out for my run after (am lucky that hubbiy works nights so is home during the day).

week 3 may be too difficult for your son ~ I suppose you can only try & see how he gets on. personally I will start at the beginning as I think this builds you up into a routine for the running & breathing, which took me until about week 4 or 5 to gain control of.

good luck & best wishes to you both. & a big well done to you for the big week 5 run :)


I've no experience of 8-year-olds (can do up to 6 and then from 11 onwards!) but I've seen some amazing little runners at Parkruns - have a look at some of the stats to see the ages. I also know a couple of 11-year-olds who've been doing parkruns as part of their family routines. I'd say starting at 8 would be brilliant and you might even be making a new Olympian!! It might mean you have to start from scratch again but then you'd do those weeks easily and be able to build up with your son.

It is really cool that he wants to do this for you - you've clearly done well there :)


I'm glad you wrote this blog, my 7 nearly 8 year old wants to come with me.. I to am not sure or how to do it but would love for us to do it... I suppose I am worried she will get an injury..but who am I kidding.. more like she will lap me!! Let us know how you go.


I'm guessing they are all different but I took my 8yr old (boy) out on a week 8 run with me. We ran two laps of a circuit past our house in case he had to bale out half way through. 28min later however, he was still bounding along - not even out of breath and I had a job on to get him to walk the 5min cool down not just run the rest of the way home!! Can't wait to take him to a park run but not until I'm ready!

It's amazing how much natural energy they can have at that age - I'd say give it a go! Intervals would probably be good anyway because at that age- they have no idea how to pace themselves!


Thanks all.

Well he insisted he didn't want to start right at the beginning so I gave him the benefit of the doubt and did week 3. He managed 90secs fine but the 3 min run was pushing him. He did it though and surprisingly paced himself to me quite well.

He wants to come again on Wednesday though so I guess I haven't put him off yet.


Brilliant news - and thanks for the update. What a star you have - you'll be doing your first parkrun together at the end of the summer holidays. Have fun!


My 9 year old son comes with me ... but on his bike! He loves it and is a really good motivator for me. If I'm going too slow for him (which is normally the case) then he just cycles up and down a few times until I catch him up.

It means that I have to run with only one headphone in but watching him takes my mind off the 'pain' :)

We went out last week in the pouring rain and he had such a fab time cycling through the puddles ... my husband opened the door to two very soggy but very smiley people when we got back!!


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