Week 5: Couch to 5k Chronicles

I spent the last two weeks repeating week 3 and week 4 of the Couch to 5K program. This was necessitated by a lapse in m exercise regime caused mostly by that thing called laziness.

So after two weeks of getting back on track I felt strong enough to do week 5.

By the way Winter is Coming in these parts so it’s darker in the morning and I’ve been forced to start my jog at 5:30 instead of 5 as I was doing when I started.

Day 1:
Brisk 5 Minute warm up walk. Run for 5 minutes, walk for 3 minutes, Run for 5 minutes, walk for 3 minutes, run for 5 minutes and cool down.
Day 1 wasn’t too bad. I did fine. The cold helps too I think, there’s less sweating.

Day 2:
Brisk 5 minute warm up walk. Run for 8 minutes, walk for 5 minutes then run for 8 minutes and cool down.

Day two exposed me. I was ok the first run though I initially thought it was 5 minutes. Was not too winded when I got my 5 minute walk. However the second 8 minute run left me wishing I had stayed in bed.

Day 3:
Brisk 5 Minute warm up walk. Run for 20 minutes and cool down

What?!! I stared in shock at my phone, convinced the app had gone haywire. Last time I did week 5 I simply used week 5 day 2 on the third day.

I was totally convinced that the app was wrong. How does one get from barely running 8 minutes to running for 20.

Alas, to my dismay after a quick Google search I discovered there was nothing wrong with the app. The Couch to 5K program indeed goes from an 8 minute run on Week 5 Day 2 to a 20 minute run on the third day. How crazy is that?

Needless to say I almost freaked out and almost stayed in bed, only managing to protestingly drag myself out of bed at 5:45. In my mind I had already lost the battle and I panicked.

I was panting by the eighth minute but I decided that giving up before reaching the half way mark would be disappointing so I ran on until I heard the “Halfway” reminder from the app. Then a funny thing happened, I decided to run until the song I was listening to ended. When it ended I was at 14 minutes and was trying to distract myself from the pain in my muscles and lungs by thinking of a novel I am reading titled Half the World by Joe Abercombie. In the book a new sailor is advised to ignore the act of rowing and only concentrate on the next stroke, taking “one stroke at a time”.

I resolved to take one step at a time for a while and amazingly when I next glanced at my watch I had been running full stop for 17 minutes. At that point I figured walking would be a huge let-down because I would then have to repeat the horrendous experience next week. That thought made me run the last minute with iron resolve, even doing an extra minute for good measure.

I did it!!

My advice to anyone who is doing Couch to 5K or who will do it is not to panic like I did. It’ll make the experience terrible. That Chinese fella called Bruce had it right when he said: Defeat is not defeat unless accepted as a reality- in your mind.

Don’t accept defeat. Ever.
Bring on week 6 lol.

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Tawanda Moyo

Author: Tawanda Moyo

Villager, Itinerant, Engineer, Reader

2 thoughts on “Week 5: Couch to 5k Chronicles”

  1. I am trying to psych myself up for my week 5, day 3 run tomorrow. Your post was just what I needed! I’ve been googling blog posts about week 5 and this is the first one that made me think maybe I could tough it out too. Thank you!! You are awesome. Going to take it one step at a time tomorrow and know it’s doable. 🙂

    1. I hope it went well. C2K has changed my life. But I’m a bit lazy. Been on Week 7 for three weeks, not because I can’t complete the runs but because I only do day 1 and then stop. I did W7D1 today again. Hopefully I’ll complete this week.

      Best wisjes and keep running!

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