Couch to 5k: Week 5 Day 3
I did it!
There is no way at the start of this process I could have imagined running for 20mins non stop as I remember struggling with the early on weeks of 90 sec and 2 min intervals.
Week 5 is really daunting and the plans definitely up the intensity. For a start, they are no longer 3 of the same plan for the week – starting with 5min runs with walking, then 8 min runs with walking and then BAM a 20min run. My first reaction to this (when I scrolled ahead in the plan a number of weeks ago) was “there is no way I can go from running a solid 8mins to running a solid 20mins overnight”. I guess I was wrong.
Not including warm up and cool down walks I covered 1.73 miles (running at a pace of 11.36/mile), which is just over half the distance of 5k (3 miles). It’ll be interesting to see if, in 3 weeks, I can build to the required distance AND achieve 5k in 30mins, which I know I’ve been able to do in the past.
The most difficult part of the 20min run was actually at about 5mins in, where it was more of a mental battle than anything else. At that point I was thinking about how much I still had to go and that I was tiring. Of course, I wasn’t really tiring – it’s definitely a mental thing. The 10min-15min band of time was by far the easiest. Having reached 10mins I was really happy as the most I’d run so far in the plans was 8 minutes. I considered that I’d got half way and to back up now would be foolish. From that 10min high I breezed through until 15mins and then from then on it was just a countdown to 20mins. The last minute seemed like a long one!
So, if you’re trying out the couch to 5k app and are dreading this run, as I was, I’d just say that you can do it. You’ve just got to have a bit of trust in the app (it’s got you this far hasn’t it?) and in yourself. And as with any of it, if you can’t complete it you just repeat the week. There’s no race to finish the app in the 8 weeks, do it at your own pace to build your fitness.
Good luck to anyone doing Couch to 5k plans at the moment!
Oh, and here’s a running buddy I picked up on my warm-up walk: