Couch to 5k – the final stretch!

I’m a little late with this post, as we actually finished the course the week before last; however, with the kids off for half term, I haven’t got round to sharing our success with you guys 🙂

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So basically, we did it!! A full 30 minutes of running, with ease as well – there wasn’t any moaning or even asking if it was possible – rather unlike the first week, when one minute of running was a chore! We just set off and kept going, not only can we run for 30 minutes now, we also enjoy it, which is amazing!

We’re living proof that given nine weeks, a good program to follow and in our case the support of a fantastic coach, anyone can become a runner!

Week 8 of the routine consisted of three 28 minute runs.
Week 9, the final week consisted of three 30 minute runs.

I really think that after week 5, when we had to jump up to running 20 minutes, the course became easier. This was because once 20 minutes had been run the rest was achievable.

This week I haven’t run, mainly due to my daughter being off for half term; however, today I’m back on it! My next personal goal is to go from 5k to 10k. I really would recommend the couchto5k course to anyone, I’d also like to take this opportunity to once again thank Pete, our coach. It’s amazing being able to leave the house and just run; it has so many benefits not only physical but also mentally too – running is a great way of letting go of stress.

I’ll keep you updated on future progress.

Couch to 5k – week 7

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I can’t believe I’ve completed week seven of the couch to 5k course! This means that I only have two weeks of training left, when I should be able to run the full 5k!

This week has been a real game changer within the program, this is because each routine consisted of a full 25 minutes of running! Even though I ran 25 minutes in the previous week, then my other two runs had some interval training, which means I had some walking time in between runs – it has been an achievement now that the walking time has gone! The walking time is excluded completely at this stage in the program, therefore, each week the running time just progresses!

My boyfriend came for a 25 minute run with me and it felt amazing to be able to chat on the way round, and not be puffing and panting for my breath. It really is fantastic when I think back to week one, when I was shattered after running for one minute. I can’t thank our coach, Pete, enough for enabling us to get to this stage of running!

This week I also did my first run in the rain; I have to admit, I was definitely one of those people who would drive past runners in the rain and question whether they was crazy!? And now I’m one of those runners.

The end is in sight for me on this program; however, it definitely isn’t the end of running for me, next I hope to go from 5k to 10k.

Image sourced from Pinterest.

Couch to 5k – week 6

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This week I’ve really enjoyed running, I think completing the 20 minute run in the previous week has made me realise that the 5k is now achievable, and within reach. I mixed up my routes a little and had a bit of a country run.

This week’s routine:

Run one: run five minutes, walk three minutes, run eight minutes, walk three minutes and then run five minutes.

Run two: run ten minutes, walk three minutes and then run another 10 minutes.

Run three: run 25 minutes with no stopping.

We all managed the 25 minute run with ease, which is amazing when thinking back to week one.

Pete, our coach, was most impressed that we all managed to maintain a pace that we was comfortable with, this meant we were able to have a conversation while running.

I can’t believe I’m now on week seven of the course and only have two weeks left; it really is proving successful!

Couch to 5k – week 5!

Last night I completed week five of the couch to 5k programme!

This week has been a real turning point in the course, because me and the rest of the group managed to run for a solid 20 minutes.

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I’m so proud of us all, in week one we were tired after one minute of running, so we really have progressed so much! To acknowledge how far we have come, our coach Pete, rewarded us each with a certificate, which we were all really pleased with.

Last night before we set off, I felt really nervous – the longest I’d run before this was eight minutes, so going from eight to twenty, seemed like a mountain to climb; however, afterwards I felt fantastic!

During the course of week five, the routine changed with each run, so we completed three runs and each was different.

Run one: Five minute warm up, five minute run, three minute walk, five minute run, three minute walk, five minutes of running and a five minute cool down.

Run two: Five minute warm up, eight minute run, five minute walk, eight minute run and a five minute cool down.

Run three: Five minute warm up, 20minutes running, five minute cool down.

Each run begins with dynamic stretching and long stretches to finish.

I really would recommend that anyone who wants to begin running, no matter what their fitness level, complete this course! It really is broken down into manageable pieces and the sense of achievement, along with the increased fitness levels is just brilliant! It’s been fantastic running with a team and a coach, because it encourages you to keep going and the correct techniques are learnt to keep you track.

We still have four weeks to go, but now the 5k seems reachable 🙂

Couch to 5k – Week 1

Here’s something a little healthy to add to your Easter weekend!

So, as stated on my last post, this week I began my journey from the couch to 5k. This is a program heavily supported by the NHS, which is designed to encourage anyone to take up exercise.

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The course lasts for nine weeks, when we should be able to complete the full 5k! I’m completing the course with a running group, which includes four of us and our running coach, Pete. It’s great running as a group because we can all encourage each other and having a coach there to support and inform us all, is just fantastic!

Week one: 5 minute warmup, which includes a brisk walk and some gentle exercises.
Followed by 1 minute of running and 1 and a half minutes of walking.
This is repeated 8 times and then completed with a five minute
walk to cool down. When we got back, we did some vital stretching!

Beginning running like this made it much more fluent and really broke it down. It’s fab having Pete there to show us the important exercises, and knowing we have a coach will inspire me to keep it up! As a group we meet with Pete once a week; however, in order to finish the course successfully, we must also run on our own at least two/three times a week.

Yesterday we set off on our first run without Pete, and just ran for a bit and walked for a bit. This is obviously better than doing nothing but it just didn’t feel structured. However, I have found this fab app called Get Running. It has the program on the app, so you just pop your headphones on and that tells you when to warm up, run, walk and cool down. If you wish, your music can also be played alongside the app and that’ll just cut in with the instructions – it is £1.99 but I think it will definitely be worth it!

I will be completing my final run of week one in the morning and I’d say it has definitely been successful. I’m proud of all of us for just getting out there and giving it a go, because that’s the hardest part! Now I have my app, I’ll be able to carry on with the course while I’m away!