Couch to 5K
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W2R2 - herons in Yorkshire are a bit dim

So once again, I survived a Week 2 run! And, if I dare say it, I found it perhaps a little easier than my first run of this second week.

Although my legs were beginning to mutter threats of mutiny at the 70s mark of each run (pathetic, I know!) I found I was less out of breath by the end of each run. I think the key was not gunning it on the first 90s run (on my first 90seconds of the Run 1 on Tuesday I had to leg it past some builders, you may recall, at a stupidly brisk jog to avoid total humiliation. but then probably exhausted myself from the outset as a result). Today I took the running/jogging sections at a much steadier pace, which was more manageable over the course of 20 minutes. However, I was struggling with Laura's instructions about breathing: she says to breathe in for four counts of your left foot hitting the ground (and breathe out similarly) but I found I could only do it for one or two counts at best. Am I breathing too fast? Am I running too slow? Does Laura have the slow and meditative breathing technique only enjoyed by Buddhist monks and nuns? I've no idea!

Today I ran a different way along the canal, through Goose Danger Zone. Fortunately all the geese must have been holidaying in Scarborough or something, for there were none to be seen and I made it back with all my limbs un-maimed. I did however see two very cute baby moorhens, and scared off nine herons.

'Gosh', thought I, after I had scared off the first three, 'There are a lot of herons about this morning. What an oasis for wildlife I live near!'

After scaring off heron number four I began to take more notice of these magnificent birds - after all, it's rather special to see so many of them in such a short space of time. However, once I started to pay more attention to my surroundings (and less to the two blisters on my feet) and engaged my brain, I noticed that it was actually the same heron that had been repeatedly frightened into flight as I careered clumsily past, and then landed further up along the tow path. My first thought, I am ashamed to say, was 'Herons in Yorkshire are pretty dim'. I mean, why fly off and then land further up the canal (where I'm heading) only to be scared off when I run past you again a minute later, eight times over, you silly bird? But, talking of silly birds, how did I not realise it was the same heron sooner?

For Run 3 this week I intend to avoid further herononcanal-induced confusion to my tiny brain by taking a route through the woods. The inclines might kill me, but trees don't move - right?

5 Replies

Spooked a heron myself the other day. There's something about herons that I find a bit sinister, big flappy giant winged things. urgh. Anyway, great blog! I was flumoxed by the breathing advice too. Still can't do it.


Well done!

I never managed the breathing thing either, I just gasped/breathed when I needed to and hoped it would sort itself out. Couldn't & still can't do in through the nose out through the mouth either....

I did W8R2 this morning and can honestly say I don't worry about my breathing, it's a lot more comfortable than it was in the earlier weeks. So on the back of that I would just say go with a breathing rhythm that works for you :)

Good luck with your next run :D


Thanks, that's good to know! Wow, week 8, the stuff of dreams to me right now. Hope you're enjoying yourself! :)


For someone who would still plonk her overweight backside on a sofa and thought she was going to die after W1R1 its going ok really!! But I do love the feeling of achievement once I've finished :)

You will get there, it's just about pacing yourself and not beating yourself up if one of your runs doesn't quite go to plan. As Laura says 'its about distance not speed' and although I've not got much of either at the moment, just like the breathing, it will happen. (I hope LOL)


Loved reading your blog entry. I'm started week 2 next week and was looking for some idea of what to expect. I think your heron must have a relation in Aylesbury. I spooked one earlier in the week and it foolishly flew in the direction I was running and then landed further up the toe path on the canal. Needless to say I then spooked it again about a minute or so later when I passed it again. Daft but very beautiful. It was the highlight of my run watching it fly low over the canal. Amazing.


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