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7377 Views 11 Replies Latest reply: Feb 5, 2011 7:25 AM by Marykb
Dorrisliz12 Rookie 1 posts since
Nov 17, 2009
Currently Being Moderated

Jan 31, 2011 7:57 PM

I am stuck at 5 miles

I have been running for over a year now. I have run several 5k and a 10k. I recently have been working toward a half marathon but I just can't get past 5 miles . Please help!!

  • NancyLFreeman Legend 243 posts since
    Feb 17, 2010
    Currently Being Moderated
    1. Jan 31, 2011 9:30 PM (in response to Dorrisliz12)
    Re: I am stuck at 5 miles

    What's making you stop at 5 miles when you run?  Pain, boredom, fatigue?



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  • Angelique Simpson Pro 92 posts since
    Mar 24, 2009
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    2. Feb 1, 2011 6:43 AM (in response to Dorrisliz12)
    Re: I am stuck at 5 miles

    I hate to break it to you, but if you ran a 10k then you ran more than 5 miles


    I suggest trying to add only part of a mile to your 5 mile run if you are truly stuck there. Go out and try for just an extra 2-3 minutes and see if you can get .25 miles added. Then the next time do the same thing. Sometimes its just a matter of figuring out the best way to get past your limit. Although, it does depend on what exactly is stopping you.... if you are having specific pain, etc. then that is something you have to weigh against increasing mileage.



    Race History
    5K - Apr 2009: 39:00
    5K - Jun 2009: 36:55
    5K - Sep 2009: 34:06
    10K - Oct 2009: 1:13:45
    5K - Nov 2009: 34:23
    5K - Feb 2010: 32:28
    Half Marathon - Apr 2010: 2:39:06
    5K - May 2010: 29:49
    10K - Jun 2010: 1:01:48

    5K - Aug 2010: 27:57

    Half Marathon - Oct 2010: 2:12:18

    10K - Nov 2010: 52:44 (PR)

    5K - Feb 2011: 23:45

    Half Marathon - Apr 2011: 1:49:18

    Marathon - May 2011: 3:56:05

    Half Marathon - Oct 2011: 1:49:14 (PR)

    5K - Nov 2011: 22:20 (PR)

    Marathon - Dec 2011: 3:41:42 (PR)

  • Dog-lover Legend 373 posts since
    Mar 5, 2008
    Currently Being Moderated
    3. Feb 1, 2011 10:26 AM (in response to Dorrisliz12)
    Re: I am stuck at 5 miles

    "One foot in front of the other"  That will get you to 6 miles and beyond!  You've already done a 10k so you've done more than 5 miles.  Now all you need to do is slowly commit to working  your way up so the increased distance doesn't intimidate you so much.  If your going to train for a 1/2 marathon then I would recommend finding a good training plan of 12-18 weeks.  Read up on what your weekly averages (miles) need to be prior to starting the program and once  you're satisfied that you want to actually do it then just commit to following the program.  Most training schedules especially for beginners work your mileage up slowly.  If your not ready to take the leap of faith then try making that 5 mile marker 5 1/2 until you feel comfortable then bump it up to 6 and so on. Over time you will develop more and more confidence as well as conditioning. For me it took a while for my body to physically get used to running those longer runs When I first started those longer runs were pretty daunting and they really can be a little scary.  Be patient and educate yourself on proper training techniques.  Good luck and have a blast,  you'll make it!!

    Quote from Bob Moawad  " You can't make footprints in the sands of time if you are sitting on your butt. And who wants to make buttprints in the sands of time"

    2008 - Grandma's marathon - 4:51            2011 - Get in Gear 1/2 marathon - 1:46

    2009 - Get in Gear 1/2 marathon - 1:49    2011 - Green Bay marathon - 3:51

    2009 - Grandma's marathon - 4:13            2011 - Grandma's marathon - 3:45

    2009 - Twin Cities marathon - 4:02           2011 - Minneapolis Pride 5k - 21:31

    2010 - Grandma's marathon - 3:58 ya hoo!

    2010 - Twin Cities marathhon - 3:55

  • Run4Coffee Pro 143 posts since
    Feb 1, 2011
    Currently Being Moderated
    4. Feb 1, 2011 8:39 PM (in response to Dorrisliz12)
    Re: I am stuck at 5 miles

    I've been running just over 8 months now and never been a runner when I started with Hal Higdon's beginner running program.  In fact, I never ran more than 4 miles and decided to run the 2010 Seattle 1/2 Marathon and used Hal's 12 week ramp up 1/2 Marathon Novice Training Programs and Schedule...  I followed it 100%.


    Don't let those walls build in your head...You can do it.  I'm 46 years old and I'm a baby in this new sport I've discovered.


    Now I've competed in a whopping two races:


    2010 Seattle 1/2 Marathon: 1:43:00

    2010 Kirkland 12 K's of Christmas: 53:49

  • This IS my race pace Pro 103 posts since
    Oct 19, 2007
    Currently Being Moderated
    5. Feb 2, 2011 3:07 PM (in response to Dorrisliz12)
    Re: I am stuck at 5 miles

    I don't understand how you can be "stuck" at 5 mi. when you've already ran 10K races.  Whatever is rolling around in your melon telling you that you "can't" go any further, get it out now.  Do 6 miles.  I don't care if you walk, crawl or roll like a tumbleweed.  I don't care if it takes you 10 min. or 10 hrs. for that 6th mile, and at this point you shouldn't either.  If you want to do it - you will.  Keep this in mind: if you go 6.55 miles, that's 1/2 way through your 1/2 marathon.


    A famous quote attributed to Henry Ford said, "Whether you believe you can or believe you cannot - you're right".


    The only thing stopping you is YOU, my friend.  So knock that crap off, lace 'em up, get out the door and run to that fight await for you after mile 5 and whip some arse.  Then, do it again in a couple of days just to prove the first time wasn't luck. 

  • rw4hand Rookie 2 posts since
    May 27, 2009
    Currently Being Moderated
    6. Feb 2, 2011 3:35 PM (in response to Dorrisliz12)
    Re: I am stuck at 5 miles



    If you are doing the same routine in your run, then you can't hope to build mileage very quickly at all. On some training runs, focus on speed and strength. Work at a faster pace for fewer miles. Then, ease the pace down a little bit for the longer runs.

  • StaticZep Amateur 15 posts since
    Nov 9, 2010
    Currently Being Moderated
    7. Feb 2, 2011 5:54 PM (in response to Dorrisliz12)
    Re: I am stuck at 5 miles

    The only possible explanation I could figure is you are trying to run at your race pace every time out.  If this is the case, back off a 1:30 to 2:00 minutes slower than your race pace when you train.  If this isn't the case, focus on perseverance and patience -- no easy or quick fixes in running just persistent training.  You can do it. Just like the quote from the earlier reply, believe you can and will do it.  The mental aspect of running can be your best friend or worst enemy. 

    Indianapolis Monumental Marathon 11/05/11 - 3:50:19

    Indianapolis Half Marathon 10/15/11 - 1:44:59

    Nobesville 10-Miler (NHS) 09/24/11 - 1:16:07

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    Indy 500 Training Series 10K 03/05/11 - 46:21

    Polar Bear Doubler 3 & 5 Mile 02/19/11 - 3M - 22:00, 5M - 38:10

    Indy 500 Training Series 5K 02/12/11 - 22:01

    Race to the New Year 5K 01/08/11 - 23:59

    Jingle Bell 5K 12/11/10 - 23:23

    Turkey Trot - Noblesville 5K 11/25/10 - 24:00

    Indianapolis Monumental Half Marathon 11/06/10 - 1:58

  • ColoCorredor Pro 97 posts since
    Dec 14, 2010
    Currently Being Moderated
    8. Jan 7, 2014 6:42 AM (in response to Dorrisliz12)
    Re: I am stuck at 5 miles

    You are in a rut, and I KNOW the feeling!  The key is to have a schedule, and to stick with it.  Another key component to increasing your mileage is cross-training.  This helps strengthen your muscles, so that it can endure a longer cardio workout when you increase your runs. 


    This can be weight training, body resistance workouts, kickboxing, or even cycling.  Anything that works your body in a different way, and also helps build up muscle mass is fantastic.  I also use a 14-week half-marathon program that incorporates days that are set aside for cross-training. 


    This is a great way to reach your goal of running a half, and I've completed several races using this schedule including the L.A. half marathon, San Diego Rock n Roll, Denver Rock n Roll, and a Sedona half.  Good Luck & I know you can DO it!  Happy Running 

    Believe you can do it. Think no other way but “Yes you can.”
    The human body is capable of considerably more physical endurance than most of us realize!!
  • Anthony5450 Amateur 25 posts since
    Nov 17, 2010
    Currently Being Moderated
    9. Feb 3, 2011 6:00 AM (in response to Dorrisliz12)
    Re: I am stuck at 5 miles

    Slow down! Try to hit the trails and just enjoy the scenery - part of enjoying running is not to take it too seriously. You do it becuase you enjoy it, right?

    Sprint Triathlon Training Program

  • MMNY Rookie 7 posts since
    Sep 21, 2009
    Currently Being Moderated
    10. Feb 3, 2011 8:10 AM (in response to Dorrisliz12)
    Re: I am stuck at 5 miles

    (My advice to someone stuck at 3 miles)




    A couple of other ideas that have helped me in the past.


    Change  your route to get some new scenery and maybe take your mind off the  distance aspect.  You might also try running to an endpoint (instead of  back "home") and have someone agree to meet you there and pick you up,  or they could drive your route and pick you up along the way at whatever  distance you accomplish.


    Sometimes a little variety will work wonders.



  • Marykb Legend 1,347 posts since
    Jan 16, 2008
    Currently Being Moderated
    11. Feb 5, 2011 7:25 AM (in response to Dorrisliz12)
    Re: I am stuck at 5 miles

    First of all, if you ran a 10K, you ran 6.2 miles.  So you already know you can go that far which is just a little less than half of a half marathon.  So just think to yourself that you are HALFWAY there!


    It is incrementally harder to add each mile to a certain point, but then you eventually reach a point where another mile is just another mile.  I can't tell you exactly when that happens, but it was somewhere around 7-8 miles for me.  (Of course that scenario doesn't continue indefinitely, since everyone will reach a point of diminishing returns, like a bell curve.  But that is generally way past the half marathon distance.)  You just have to push through your barrier, whether it is the one hour barrier or the six mile barrier or whatever looms in your mind as farther than you think you can go.  Look at it this way - you can always go five minutes longer, right?  So just add five minutes - or about .5 mile - to your long run each week.  Go as slowly as you need to go to complete your distance for the day.   Don't try to run at the pace you do your shorter runs, this is the time to increase endurance, not speed.  If you literally cannot run 5 minutes longer on your long run then that is a sign you need to dial it back.  And once you get comfortable at 8-10 miles you can start adding a mile to your weekly long run.   Keep in mind that if you are training to conquer new distances, then every 3-4 weeks you can have a "cut back" week where you reduce or maintain your distance before taking it to the next level.   If you allow plenty of time for training, this won't throw you off and may even help prevent injury and burn out.  Just be sure to allow for the cut back week when planning your training schedule (I am always surprised how many beginner training plans don't include a cut back week, but assume you can add 1 mile/week to your long distance for 12 straight weeks.  I personally don't think that is doable for most beginning long distance runners.  Just my opinion!)


    Hopefully you will find that adding only .5 mile/week to your distance is not too intimidating and you will push past your barrier soon.  Those miles will add up fast and you'll be at 10+ miles before you know it - in two or three months.  Good luck!

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