Hey all, I just started C25K and had a question. I know rest days are important, but is it okay to squeeze in one more walk/run a week? The reason I ask is that it really seems to boost my mood tremendously in a way just walking doesn't. (I live in NYC so I get about 40mins of walking every day whether I want to or not since I live far from the subway.) I don't have access to an elliptical or anything else as I really can't afford to join a gym. Advice?
Hey misssmartypants (love the name)!
I think you can do 4x a week as long as you still allow yourself the rest day (like, Mon, Wed, Fri, Sun). But then your next week would look like Tues, Thur, Sat. The important thing during C25K is keeping that rest day to let your muscles do their thing before you go run again!
Congrats on getting started!
Registered for my first 5K...coming up on 4/10 (hoping to finish in under 40 minutes)!
Thanks! Something that confuses me a bit is that I have seen elsewhere that you are suposed to run 5X a week with one being a long run and 1 being a speedy run and the rest as easy runs. I know we aren't supposed to vary it like this during c25k, but when and how do we transition from 3 to five days? (I just want to do more if possible cause I'm having fun.) But I know that overdoing it leads to injury so just trying to figure out if there's a safe way to do more.
When I first started c25k, there were several times I thought I could just squeeze in one extra workout. But, I read the info about the program which stressed NOT pushing faster or doing extra workouts so as not to injure yourself. Since you're walking routinely, your fitness level is probably better than most of us couch potatoes, but all your muscles, tendons, and your joints need to gradually accustom themselves to this new activity. One of the things I liked about the program was that it left me feeling like I could do more, and looking forward to my next chance to run. I think that anticipation was a bit part of my success. I'm registered for my first 5K in 2 weeks!
I was probably in the best shape of my life back when I lived in NYC, just because of all the walking I did. I learned to walk really fast to get places, and my 4th floor walk-up helped too! Of course, I was 22 then, which might have helped...
I may not be good, but I'm slow!
The general idea is to only increas the distance you go by no more than 10% a week. Do more and you are in greater danger of injury.
How most of the running workouts do it is first increasing the distance you go, then when when your ability to do distance gets better add a day. For example if you follow the C25k plan the way it is written then when you graduate you will be running 3 miles (or 30 minutes) three times a week. Here is one way you would take five weeks to safely transition to 4xday running.
W1 3 3 3
W2 3 4 3
W3 3 4 4
W4 4 4 4
W5 3 3 3 3
Another way would be to add an extra day, but cut back on distance. Again, considering starting after you have graduated from the C25k program:
W1 3 3 3
W2 2 2 2 3
And build from there.
Of course it depends on your goals and fitness levels. I am in the C25k program now (finished W5D3 yahoo!) and afterwards I am going to transition into a little more aggressive program because of the longer term goals I have for running and weight loss. I´ll have to monitor myself closely to make sure my body doesn´t overstress, but this is in part because I was a runner before and despite my weight my overall fitness level isn´t bad. Others who are finding the C25k to be more of a challenge might be better off doing as the program sponsors suggest, which is to level off for a couple of weeks to let your body adjust to the new activity level before you start taxing it again with increasing exercise. The best thing is to get to know your body and let it tell you what it can handle.
One thing I would recommend is getting a copy of either Bob Glover´s The Runners Handbook or the Competitive Runner´s Handbook. I first got them in 1984-ish when I got serious into running and I got the updated copies this year of both on my Kindle now and they are like old friends updated for modern technology. Both not only have great advice on nutrition and hydration, running strategy and sample training schedules, but they also do a wonderful job of explaining what goes into training so that you can become empowered to become your own trainer and design your own training regimine depending on your fitness and your goals.
OVER 50 PRs
5K - 31:50 5K La Joya 2011 - Aug 2011
10K - 1:14:30 at Guayaquil Half Marathon - Jul 2011
Half - 2:32:22 at Guayaquil Marathon - Oct 2011
InterAmerican Family Fun Run (5k) 36:04 (Previous Year 39:22)
Emelec 5K 33:16
15 June - 5K Ciudad Celeste
22 June 5K por los Ninos
1 July - Guayaquil Half Marathon
5 August - 5K La Joya
2 September - 30K Milagro
7 October - Guayaquil Marathon
18 November - 5K Villa Club
2 December - 5K DM3
hey, good question! i have had the same issue. on week 2 i did go 2 days in a row. I was in fairly good shape beforehand (had been doing regular cardiovascular exercise for several years including the elliptical), and it didn't seem to bother me at all. later on in the program (middle of week 6) i did a long & fairly strenuous hike up a mountain, which took close to 2 hours, and then tried to run the next day (w6d2). that was not a good idea and i had to stop in the middle. i just felt depleted.
i can't say that you will have the same experience as me, but just be careful about doing 2 difficult workouts in a row. i did ask on another thread what to do on the non-running days, and people had some good suggestions, including strength training, core training, or riding a bike. i have a couple exercise dvds (tae bo cardio is a good one) that i keep in the rotation. i try to do yoga once in a while too, it's great for helping w/flexibility & relaxation.
sarah in pa
candy cane 5k, 12/8/12 36:25
historic bethelehem turkey trot, 11/24/12 37:18
turning point 5k, 10/6/12 38:38
run wild at the lehigh valley zoo 5k, 8/19/12 40:38
2012 first night resolution run 5k, 12/31/11, 37:15
children's miracle network turkey trot, 11/19/11, 35:15
haven of hope 5k, 11/5/11, 37:53
steps to safety 5k, 9/18/11, 40:03
first 5k, sue crowe memorial 5k: 7/17/11, 42:38