Couch to 5K
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A beautiful day to run away with yourself!

It's funny how this running lark works. Since I got the idea of entering our local 10k into my head last weekend, I've not been able to extract it. I've sought some advice on here and resolved to give it some serious thought this Saturday/Sunday.

My concerns (apart from the obvious "can I do its?") were having the time in the weekdays and finding a programme to use in order to build up to it.

Anyway as I said, I elected to put it to one side until the weekend.

A strange start to the morning, I awoke around 4am and realising I still had an hour, drifted off again. Then much to my annoyance, I started awake and realised I'd missed my alarm and was thus unable to run before work, I have to tell you, I was absolutely gutted, nay worse, I was fuming. I couldn't for the life of me work out how the feck I'd missed the bells. That I was also late for work wasn't bothering me half as much as the fact I'd missed my run.

Then my 5 am alarm went off!

Yes folks, I'm now dreaming about feckin' running! It had felt so real that I was actually delighted I'd not slept through after all.

Anyway, a splash of my face, gear on and I was out the door and into another perfect day for running, dry and almost windless. I'm on a roll at the moment where conditions are concerned. Two perfect days on the trot.

This is my penultimate C25k run and while I've been running 36-40 minute 5k's since Week 7, I want that graduate badge and so have been counting the runs as if I'm abiding by Laura, therefore I set off for my warm up with Week 9's podcast playing 'You And Feckin' Julie'. At least the beauty of the daffs in the square helped compensate a little for my bleeding ears...

Oh and I may have got the title slightly wrong there....

I'd decided to do my Millionaires Row and back 5k route, the better to save my fannying about trying to work out how far I'd ran on the go, as I'd had to do the last day. I felt good almost from the start, unusual for me and was through Laura's five minutes and fast (ahem!) approaching the half way stage when it occurred to me I wasn't even waiting for her to tell me I'd done 15 minutes, I was thinking distance rather than time.

I've mentioned before that Adele lives in one of the houses I run to and this reminded me of the pain and suffering I'd endured the night before, when my love of music suckered me into watching The Brits, ostensibly a celebration of the thing I hold dear but in reality a horror story of a show, held together by possibly the unfunniest man in England.

Thank god for Dave Grohl and Ben Howard!

I mean, I'm no great shakes at the running but at least I do it alone and in the dark rather than in front of the nation. And yes, I'm still talking about running.

Rant over, where was I?

Oh yes, 2.5k and heading back to my entry/exit point to make it to 5. It was at 20 minutes gone (at this stage I'd taken to replying "and the rest" to Laura every time she told me how long I had left) I started to think how far I'd have to go to make it 6k, trying to pick out a landmark in my mind. By 30 minutes I'd started to reconsider but as the warm down tune came to an end I felt good again and decided to go for it, choosing a cafe on the way to town as a likely place to about turn so as to make up the extra distance I'd need.

I'm fortunate in that I rarely feel anything bad in my legs other than the occasional twinge, however after the 5k mark I did start to feel the muscles aching, not in an alarming way, in fact like the sweat, I almost felt of it as a reward for my efforts.

Scratch that. I definitely saw it as a reward for my efforts.

I then opted to see if I could increase my speed a bit and did, probably for the last five minutes. Nothing major but my splits tell me that final one was approximately 20 seconds faster than my 4th and 5th k's so I was quite pleased with that.

I did check the app before I stopped and finally pulled up at 6.3k, which took me 47 minutes and the thing is, had I the time I know I could have gone further. However I'd been surprised to see it was now well past 6am and I had eaten right into the time I take indoors to cool down before jumping into the shower and readying myself for work. Confirmation again that I'd stopped thinking in terms of time and was only concerned with distance.

I also realised that were Mrs Fingalo awake when I left, she'd be wondering where I was and no doubt convincing herself that I'd collapsed somewhere or been attacked by a werewolf or somesuch. I think I've said here before that she hates me running and particularly hates me running in the dark and on the quiet route I do.

Sure enough, halfway home I received a concerned text. She's some woman.


A quick stretch of each calf before I went indoors and I've not felt so much as a twinge from my legs since.

I did feel a bit lightheaded once in, which made me think I'll have to start eating maybe half a banana before I go out for the longer runs the 10k build up is going to demand of me, because it's quite obvious from today that the decision has been made to go for it and my body didn't even have the decency to wait for my mind to agree.

Graduation awaits on Saturday.

Oh and we don't really have werewolves down here, I've just been watching a lot of True Blood lately.

12 Replies

Really enjoyed reading this with my (late) lunch. Will look forward to reading all about Saturday, I'm sure it will be grand!


Oh, that was fun to read! The bit about dreaming about your alarm was hilarious! :D

And saying that aching in your legs was a REWARD?! Ha ha ha! Now just don't go and overdo it and get an injury - you'd miss it terribly!


Thanks Petal.

The dream was so real Greeners, that's why it's funny to me, I can recall exactly how angry and annoyed I was! In the way of dreams it then kind of morphed into something less defined and that's when the alarm went. Very odd.

As for the ache in my legs, I recall saying on this site a while ago in response to some advice about wicking clothes helping with sweat that I saw it as a badge of honour, I felt the same way about my muscles hurting earlier. Of course I wasn't in agony or anything like it, that'd be a different kettle of fish, I just felt it was earned and thus couldn't help feeling good about it.

I hope for a nice day again on Saturday, I'm now happy that what I've done today means I can do the 10k so don't feel any obligation to push myself too far too soon. I think I'll stick with 5k's a couple of times a week and gradually extend the distance on my third run, depending on how good I'm feeling.

6.3k still leaves a lot to do but I've been buzzing all day since as it's given me enormous confidence that I can do the full distance.


Hope you have grand weather for your grad run! :)


That would be ideal but come hell or high water, I'll be out there and grinning like a Cheshire cat when I finish.


I also dream I'm running sometimes, it's weird... Give Mrs Fingalo time and I'm sure she'll come around, I think sometimes nearest & dearest just worry about us. My OH was always fine but my parents remain convinced I'll be knocked down/jigger my knees etc... Enjoy your 10k training, it's just a case of slow & steady in my experience.


I think she'll be much more relaxed when the brighter mornings come in, NB.


I knew you would convince yourself. Or maybe you already had. Good luck for Saturday.


Any doubts I had were blown away this morning Tish. Apparently entry for the race I'm interested in doesn't open until May so I'll have to look for another one to enter, in the meantime I'll build up to it anyway.


Well done to you!!! I must admit something here...I have noticed a trend of people revising the program or even skipping weeks to Graduation. Even though you jumped ahead in minutes, I must admit, I admire how you are waiting to say you graduate once you do that week 9,run3 run. :-) Wishing you a fantastic final run to the program and a successful 10K start! We are getting ready for our Graduation week of 10k which would be alot easier if we.would not of had 16" of snow dumped on us!!! Gayle


Brilliant, Fingalo, you're doing so well! Like Gayle, I think it's great that even though you can easily do the 5k you're still waiting to graduate at 9 weeks. You are amazing :)


PS - loved the dreaming. You really are a runner!


Thanks Gayle and Annie.

Gayle, you know how I feel this programme is a tool to be used by us rather than a regime to restrict us but at the same time, I think as long as it does the trick, who cares how you work it? In a way I kind of separate the badge from the programme, while I'm playing fast and loose with the C25k, the badge itself is important to me in its own right and I will be as proud as punch when it appears beside my name, hopefully tomorrow.


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