Couch to 5K
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How do you pace yourself?

I've completed the w5r1 so far, and I've noticed that every time I begin a new run milestone, I am over cautious about pacing myself, because I *really* don't want to tire myself out. Not being able to judge the pace with respect to the previous one, I end up going slower. Atleast according to the distance I've covered. I've barely increased my run distance in the last 2-3 weeks.

I try to make sure my pace is steady by going with the rhythm of the song that is playing, but when the song changes I'm not sure if I'm still doing the same :)

But more importantly, I want to, at least, maintain my previous run's pace but I find it hard to judge what that was and also, not go too fast and risk tiring myself out.

7 Replies

I was very lucky, when I ventured out during week 8 for the first time having plucked up the courage to leave the safety of my late evening gym treadmill sessions (no witnesses to what I thought were my doomed efforts!), my big sis lent me her old Garmin (no heart rate monitor) so I knew what my pace was.

When I graduated I treated myself to a Garmin forerunner with heart rate monitor! Not cheap, but I decided I was WORTH IT! Plus I had saved at least the amount of money I ended up spending on not buying so much booze and take aways! I love it!

I have it set so I can see my pace my distance and my heart rate at the moment.


Thanks Deryn61, i do have the Nike+ running app on my phone that gives me my stats based on GPS tracking, but I didn't wish to keep my large phone in my hand and keep looking at it :) Or maybe it would be worthwhile to do this in the beginning just till I get into a rhythm of my own.


I really wouldnt worry about pace at the moment.

This program is designed to teach you how to run continously for 30 minutes.

Some people manage 5k in 30 minutes, some don't.

When you've graduated, and can run for 30 minutes, and after you've patted yourself on the back, then start thinking about distance and pace.

Best of luck ! :)


You're probably right, gypsydepp :) It's just that I don't want to go slower than before and also keep a steady pace. I've read that it's important to get into a running rhythm. I've attempted a 10k run/walk before but my takeaway from that was that I was never consistent in my runs and walks and also my pace. I just dragged myself from the start point to the end :D


I always have slowed down for the start of each weeks new challenge to make sure I could do it and finish, then increased slightly for the second run of week. More important to me to finish than speed. Going to worry about speed and distance when I graduate in 10 runs time!


I think pace is the hardest thing to figure out, there is two ways really one is just experience which will come your way like it or not and its really just part of the learning process. I started using little landmarks along my route - you know by 6 minute when Laura says "Get a move on slow coach" I should be by the pub, that kind of thing. You just get a feel for it after a while.

Alternatively if you are up to buying "kit" I use my Garmin to pace myself now and use that to check if I am over or under cooking it now. Though I am not usually too far off the pace I think I am doing, but it is a useful little spur.


Oh dear, I hadn't even thought about increasing the distance I'm running! I find keeping going takes all my attention. I do try to speed up towards the end of each run though. There'll be plenty of time for increasing the distance!


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