I restarted Couch to 5K last Friday. This will be my fourth attempt since I usually ditch the plan after Week 4 or 5, thinking I can do it on my own. Which is true, I probably could, but I think the C25K plan is one of the best training plans I've seen. And since I'm still struggling to make it past 1 mile, I really want to see this to completion.
On Friday, I made the decision to just run. My plan was to run 3/4ths of a mile, walk to the 1-mile marker, and then run the 2nd mile. That didn't happen. Instead, I made it a little past 1/2 a mile before stopping. My legs were on fire. And I was really disappointed in myself, thinking running was "not for me" and a stupid decision. Then I thought of C25K and how it really eases you into the running game. I'm going to make it work this time.
I think my mind is getting warped by all the marathon posts I've been reading. Folks, one mile is a long way to run. That's 1,760 yards. Twelve whole minutes of running. (Well, more if you're like me.) While I may not be running a marathon, or even a 10K, in the near future, I need to focus more on the process.
The C25K plan has you running 3 days a week, doing the same interval pattern on these days. It ups the intensity each week. For Week 1, I started with a 5-minute warm-up and then began the intervals of jogging for 60 seconds, then walking for 90 seconds, for 20 minutes. The program ends with a 5-minute cool-down. This would usually take me 1 and 3/4 miles, and I would walk an extra 1.25 miles to round my miles out to 3.
Friday, my run went so smooth. I felt great, my pace was awesome, and I really felt like I was making a great decision to restart this program. (I also went for the run at 6pm.) On Saturday, I went to the park around noon and struggled a little bit more this time. It was a lot hotter and I had only eaten breakfast at that point, which I think had something to do with it. Tuesday was my last day on Week 1. I ran at 6pm and it was cool. I felt a cool breeze while I was running! It felt great, although I dealt with weird pain at the top of my right foot which made it harder. While it didn't hurt while I was running, it was awful pain when I started walking.
For the first 2 weeks, I'll be following the C25K app I have on my iTouch and then using the plan I found on Cool Running to run for distance, instead of time. The app only does time. My mom and I have been running at a park about a half hour away, because it's safe and the trail is marked perfectly. It's a 1-mile or 2-mile trail with markers for every quarter-mile. I've yet to find a better trail in my city.
I've been disappointed with my shoes thus far. I am still dealing with arch pain, although it's not as intense as before. And I'm once again dealing with shin splints. Again, they aren't as painful and I'm usually fine once I stop running. And on Tuesday, I began experiencing pain on the top of my right foot up to my ankle. I tightened my shoes, hoping it would help which it somewhat did. My only problem with keeping my shoes tight is that it makes my feet go numb, which I'm guessing isn't a good thing. I'm not sure how much longer I should give them before returning them for another pair. These shoes (with custom insoles) cost me over $200, so I kind of want them to be gold on my feet. The fact that I'm still experiencing a whole lot of pain is starting to annoy me.
How did you get started with running? Have you ever used Couch to 5K?