NSV: C25k

britnik29 Posts: 34 Member
So as of today I am almost done with my C25K program and I am having mixed emotions.

To recap, one year ago (and 75-80 pounds heavier at that time) I attempted this program but could not manage to get my breathing under control to get to week 3. However, I decided to give it another go in preparation for my first 5k in 13 days.

And today I ran the entire 3.125 miles with a total time of 32:30, making my average a 10.4 minute mile which equals an average of 5.8 mph.

On one hand I am super proud that I can manage to run without walking at all, especially looking back a year ago and thinking I would never be able to run. So I am happy that I am able to prove what I CAN do when I put my mind to something.

But on the other hand, I feel like I am on the slow side. I mean I think considering this is my first time, it probably is just good that I am able to complete it. But when I try to go much faster (which I have attempted) my HR jumps way too high to be safe for me at this time. I am hoping this comes under control the longer I get my practice runs in. But we will see.

But I guess for now, I will simply focus on the positive and knowing I CAN do something I never would have thought to do before. I am even comfortable running outside which I never thought I would have the nerve to do. So overall, this is a big accomplishment. I just hope I am not the last one in the upcoming race. =/ So we will see how much I improve in the next 13 days...

Any tips or feedback from anyone would be much appreciated.


  • schle009
    schle009 Posts: 63 Member
    I can't speak for myself as I am still in week 3, but I know someone who used to run about that spring of last year...now he runs upwards of 9 miles in a little over an hour. I'd say that's enough of a jump to say you'll get faster eventually :)
  • NZblue
    NZblue Posts: 147 Member
    I'm on week 6, and SOOOO slow. I've not beat myself up about it. I've progressed through it at a slow pace, and also run slow.

    I take my 13-month-old daughter in her pushchair while I run.

    I found week 4 was my breaking point. It was so. damn. hard!

    But it's so exhilarating running for longer lengths of time!
  • MissySpring
    MissySpring Posts: 442 Member
    Congratulations!!! 5.8 mph is a very respectable speed, in my beginner opinion. I've been running since December. The best advice I was given when getting frustrated about not being able to run fast for long was...run slow, then run slow longer...the speed will come after you've built up your endurance.
  • MDF247
    MDF247 Posts: 64 Member
    I "graduated" from my C25K in November 2013 having started at a baseline of "can't run more than a hundred feet". At that time I would have died trying to hit the pace you are at. Speed is relative.

    After six plus months of steady running, with some runs up to 14 miles, my best 5k time is still only 29:12, and my typical 5k is more like 31:00.

    Progress in running can be pretty quick for some folks, and for others it's measured in months and years. I seem to be in the second category. Your underlying fitness, age, diet and natural athletic ability will have a lot to do with how quickly you progress.

    For now, I would say you should be very pleased with the progress you HAVE made and just be patient with the process. If you stay with it, you will probably be amazed at what you can do a year from now. (example - I never dreamed I would be able to run more than 5k, now it's pretty much a warmup)
  • eganita
    eganita Posts: 501 Member
    I think that's a great pace for your first one. I generally run faster in races compared to my normal runs... I think the energy from the other people and the race itself make me push myself a little harder. If you are looking to challenge yourself, you could always set a 10 minute mile as your goal for this 5k (or you could see how this first one goes and then start setting goals after that if you wanted to... of course, this is all up to personal preference :) ).

    In my experience, the best way to improve endurance and speed is to do intervals. That may be something you'd want to look into in the future. Here's one article about it, though I am sure there are many other ones out there: http://www.active.com/running/articles/use-interval-training-to-hit-your-5k-and-10k-potential

    Integrating hills into your workouts would also help... then running on a flatter course will seem like a piece of cake :)

    Anyway, great job!!! It sounds like you've been working very hard.
  • jbee27
    jbee27 Posts: 356 Member
    Anywhere close to a 10 minute mile is (in my eyes) fantastic!

    I'm slowly building back up to a full 5k after transitioning to outdoor running, then getting really sick and having to take almost 3 weeks off. I'm sloooooowwww, doing about a 12 minute mile, but slow is better than not at all.
  • mamahannick
    mamahannick Posts: 322 Member
    C25k is a fantastic program! My strategy was to focus on minutes over miles first, then focus on increasing my speed. I completed the program, and right now I can run without stopping for 40 minutes at a 10:00/mile pace. I am going to start shifting my focus onto speed by incorporating intervals into my running routine.

    I agree that you tend to run faster in races with other people around you, but be careful not to burn yourself out too fast. When I switched from treadmill to road running, I ran much faster than I should've and burned out so quickly. Since then I've learned how to pace myself off the treadmill and it's helped so much. :)
  • eganita
    eganita Posts: 501 Member
    I agree that you tend to run faster in races with other people around you, but be careful not to burn yourself out too fast. When I switched from treadmill to road running, I ran much faster than I should've and burned out so quickly.

    Good advice... I should've mentioned that! If you do feel like you went a little too fast in the beginning, you can always slow down (or even stop) for awhile until you are able to get back to your regular pace. Of course it's best to not have to stop or slow down, though... I also usually pick it up a notch when I can see the finish line up ahead! I like to pick a person who is a little ahead of me and make it my goal to finish before him/her :)
  • emzilee
    emzilee Posts: 96 Member
    I think that pace is pretty damn good! I did C25K for the first time last year, and although I got to running the full 30 minutes, I didn't get anywhere near 5K. And then I stopped completely.

    A couple of weeks ago I finally ran my first full non-stop 5K with a time of 40:59. Which is about 4.5mph / 13:33 mile pace.

    So you're BLAZING me ;)
  • britnik29
    britnik29 Posts: 34 Member
    Thanks everyone for the input! Definitely feel more motivated :)
  • swsays
    swsays Posts: 125 Member
    Whether you run your 5k in 20 min or 40 or 100 - you still cover the distance. That is what counts! Be patient with your body and a big WOO HOO for how far you've come.
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