I did it! Today was Week 5 Day 3 of C25K, the day that everyone looks forward to with a degree of excitement and a fair amount dread.
The goal for today was to run for either twenty minutes or two miles without stopping. As my main goal at the moment is to keep going, rather than thinking about speed or distance, I opted for the twenty minutes rather than the two miles.
Having only ever run for eight minutes at a time, I did have some doubts about whether I’d be able to do it. However, it proved to be a lot easier than I thought it would be.
This is partly to do with the fact that the C25K program allows your body to adapt to running for longer, but more than that, it also has a lot to do with the way that doing C25K makes you listen to and understand your body’s needs and what it is capable of.
The most important thing that I have learned over the last five weeks or so is how to pace myself. I no longer worry about how I look when I’m running, about what people think of my half jog half shuffle, or about how many people overtake me as I make my way along the seafront. If I have to go slowly to keep going, then that’s what I’ll do. And it works.
The other thing that I have learned is that the way you breathe makes a huge difference. As well as ensuring that your body is getting a steady flow of oxygen, focusing on breathing helps keep my mind off other distractions like how hot it is, how much further I have to go, or how my legs are starting to hurt.
If you missed my post about breathing, you can check it out here. The technique used in the video really helped me get through today’s run without feeling like I was going to keel over by the end of it.
Ok, so I didn’t manage the full two miles. I checked my distance when I got home and found that the running part of my work out, not including the five minute warm up and cool down, was only 1.78 miles. But that’s close enough for now and gave me a pace of 11 minutes and 14 seconds (or thereabouts) per mile, which I’m pretty pleased with.
Tomorrow, I’ll be back to intervals of walking and running again with Week 6 Day 1, so hopefully that will help me to work on my pace for next Saturday’s 22 minutes. I can’t wait!
How’s your training going? Have you done Week 5 Day 3? How do you find the leap to longer running segments in your training? Please share your thoughts in the comments.