Couch to 5K
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I feel like a cheat!

I have just completed W3R3 so W4R1 is on Sunday and as I am only just managing the 3 min runs (red faced and breathless - hmm thats a good name for a band!) I am thinking the 5s will be too much, in saying that I was only just managing the 90 second runs and thought 3 mins was too much! I guess I will find out on Sunday if its too much or not. How have others faired with W4R1?

I do feel a bit as if maybe I am somehow cheating as I am only running on the flat and avoiding hills and my runs are to say the least more of a rapid shuffle. I know we are not supposed to run too fast but I sometimes wonder whether I am possibly going too slow as I am not in any way fit but despite my calves feeling somewhat tight whilst running (I use the term "running" loosely!) I havent had any pains, cramps or stiffness afterwards as others have reported or am I just lucky with a good pair of trainers! Should I vary between flat and hilly to get fitter or for the time being just concentrate on getting through the programme on the flat?

6 Replies

I'd just concentrate on getting through the program. Add in a hill or two if you fancy it but don't feel you're cheating if you don't. I think the program is largely about learning to pace yourself so you can complete each session. Start the 5min runs at a slower pace than you did the 3mins - if in doubt, start off slower, you can always build up speed later if you feel able.

Once you've completed the program and can run for 30 minutes, you can start to think about what you want to achieve next. Hills will help with strength and speed, as will intervals.

Good trainers will help minimise pain and discomfort, as will stretching gently after a run. I also think gentle walking or other exercise on rest days helps minimise pains and aches.


Thanks for your support. Yes I think you are right and I will stick to the flat and move on to hills after the 9 weeks. I have to laugh when you say to run a bit slower pace than I did for 3 minutes, I dont think I could go any slower!


I avoided all hills till the end of the programme. That can be your next challenge!


Yes I think that is a good suggestion . . . then I will have the hills to look forward to! I dont they they will be alive with the sound of music more the sound of panting. Thanks for your advice.


Don't worry about w4, it is a little tougher bt they wouldn't put it in there unless they thought u could do it. Just keep going. Remember u've managed so far so u can do it, trust urself and the program! Good luck!


One run at a time, completing them always come as a surprise, you can do it honest.

I run on the flat, not even a small incline and don't feel like I'm cheating. Remember two weeks ago I bet 60 seconds was hard and now your running three times that! You can do it, slowly but surely, then increase speed on second or third run if you feel like you can.

Enjoy :-)


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