Couch to 5K
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Now.....where was I?

Oh yes. Week 3, run 3 went well, other than it poured down the whole time and I looked like a drowned rat at the end of it. Admittedly a big feck off drowned rat in Celtic jogging bottoms and size 14 shoes but a drownded rat all the same.

And so to Ireland for Christmas, anyone who's read some of my earlier posts will know I've been dreading getting to Cork for two reasons, firstly because I knew it would coincide with the start of what I considered a major step up (five minutes??? Twice????) but mainly because I was unsure of finding anywhere long enough to run without having to take on the type of hills that make the north face of the Eiger seem a mere bagatelle.........Okay I may have slightly overdone it there but I'm sure you get the gist, it's feckin' hilly!

It tells you something about my preoccupation with this running palaver that almost as soon as the brother-in-law met us at the airport, almost the first thing I asked in the car was where I could run. A bad choice because I'd not mentioned taking up running and knowing me as he does, it was all he could do not to lose control of both himself and the vehicle. Well he did the former but thankfully not the latter.

Once he recovered from the shock/laughter he was able to suggest an ideal spot, somewhere they call 'the track' that isn't a formal track at all but is laid out in an oval and has only a slight uphill section. Very slight, which is just as well, considering what was to come.

With the season that was in it, I didn't hold out much hope of going out every day but over the course of the ten day trip, I planned for three runs, basically competing Week 4 on Irish soil, as it were.

This was after agonising for a good while as to whether I should just repeat Week 3 until I felt more confident about the step up, primarily for fear of failure. I eventually decided that would be as much a failure as not making the attempt, so decided to give it a lash.

My first run was two days later, a fabulous winter sunshiney day, almost unheard of in a country where it usually only stops raining to change water tanks. The walk to the track was less than ten minutes uphill (I knew I wasn't getting away with it completely) and the first three minute run wasn't too bad. Sadly that was about it as the first 5 minute run all but killed me, as I'd suspected the 5 minutes would.

Halfway through I was in bits, my body felt like I was running in water and my lungs were screaming. It was only a combination of my determination to complete the five minutes at least once and the decision that I'd abandon the session once I did that got me through. Rather forlorn, I stepped off the track and headed back to the house.

Then strangely, although I'd felt absolutely out on my feet, after the next walking stage was up (I'd not had the energy to turn Laura off or even pull out the earphones) when she said to start the 3 minute run, I did! This brought me back to the house and left me slightly disappointed that I'd not remained on the track to at least attempt the final five minute section, as I couldn't believe I'd recovered enough to do the 3 after how I'd felt at the end of the first 5. That said, it would have meant a minute less recovery time so perhaps I was being optimistic. Still, it irked.

And that was all she wrote!

Unfortunately (and rather sickenenly) my back reared up on me a couple of days later. I've long since had problems with it and can usually gauge whether to take the risk and run but this time it was an unusual problem in that if I was sitting down, every time I stood up it went into spasm and locked up for up to half a minute. It had happened before but only occasionally for a couple of seconds, never anywhere near as long as that. Therefore I didn't like to take the risk.

Have to say I was gutted, especially after the previous failure to complete the run.

Anyway, that left me just to enjoy the break, drinking and eating far too much, just as the baby Jesus would want.

Arrived back last Sunday and continued to indulge until my first full day back at work yesterday, at which point I drew a line in the sand and as my back had felt much better the last few days, decided to head out this morning.

As I hadn't ran in over a week I decided to repeat a Week 3 run and although I have to confess I found it tough, I never felt it beyond me and I'm set up now to attempt Week 4 again on Saturday.

Bring it on!

8 Replies

Hi fingalo, brilliant blog! Good luck with the next runs, your body will soon adjust!

See you at the finish line,


Great to have your hilarious blogs back. Sorry to hear about your back troubles and hope it will behave from now on.

The only time I've been to Cork was way back when, about 30 years ago - two memories stand out - the best bacon butty I've ever had, and we got robbed while camping on the verge of the entrance to the docks (yes, daft place to camp, but we were young and very naive!) - actually they didn't steal anything, but they went through our bike panniers and slit the side of the tent while we were asleep! Scary thing to find in the morning. We were very relieved we hadn't woken up while they were there... Anyway, it didn't put us off Ireland, as we've been back three times since, most recently this summer. Wonderful country, and lovely people.

I have week 4, run 1 as my next one too. Bring it on!


Welcome back Fingalo and another grest blog. I was only joking when I said that I didn't want you to complete C25K cause I enjoy your blog so much!! lol. So good luck with your next run and I look forward to reading how you beat week four.


Glad you are back blogging fingalo - I was only thinking of you the other day.......!

You gave it a try which is great and you will have whipped w4 into shape in no time I'm sure! Hope your back stays ok.



Cheers Sedge.

Scary indeed Greenlegs, can't help but feel disappointed at your introduction to Ireland, although being a Wexford man I'm tempted to put it down to Cork langers....Glad you didn't let it put you off. As for Week 4, I'm actually quite looking forward to Saturday morning as I know what's coming now and think it my biggest challenge by far. Good luck with your first run at it.

PeaBea, I took it for the great compliment it was. At the moment I'm calling it Weak 4.....

Thanks Sue, I'll get the better of it, come hell or high water.


Welcome back! I wondered where you ran off to!!! ;-) Gayle


Ha ha!

I mentioned on here that I was off home and so wouldn't be blogging but think it might have been in a reply to someone else, rather than in my own blog.

Glad to be back into the running though and haven't felt a reaction from my back after yesterday's run so think I'm good to go now.


Glad you're back at it. Good luck with your run today.


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