Couch to 5k Wednesday

Whoa!  Almost already forgot about writing on the C25K topic... not to mention that it's already WEDNESDAY!  I guess running really speeds up your week...

So for those of you who aren't familiar with couch to 5k, it is basically for people such as myself who would classify themselves as "couch potatoes".  While being a couch potato has it's perks - let's face it, TV is fun - nothing feels better than that sore feeling you get after a great workout.  However, when it comes to running, I am typically not a huge fan.  I have pretty much always hated any distance running.  But I have had friends from high school who  have become runners and I can see how much it has sculpted and toned their bodies in a way that other work out programs have failed to do.  This, coupled with the fact that my post-pregnancy body has left me looking like the little green fellow from the movie Flubber, I have decided it is time to try to catch the running bug!

Here's a picture for those of you too young to remember!

Though I am so in awe of those who do have that will power, let's face it, we're not all strong enough to go the "cold turkey" route.  I love the idea of easing into things when it comes to majorly changing your habits (be it changing eating, exercising, swearing, or smoking habits).  And the C25K does just that. 

The program is broken down into three run/walk sessions a week for nine weeks total.  In the first week, you start with a 5 minute warmup walk.  Next you alternate 60 seconds of jogging followed by 90 seconds of walking.  You do this for a total of 20 minutes and end with another 5 minute cool down walk.  By week nine, you start with a 5 minute warmup walk and then run for 3 miles - which they say can be done within 30 minutes... we'll see about that!  There are many weeks in between week one and week nine that gradually get you to where you want to be physically by the end of the program.

So far, I've survived day one and two of the first week.

Day one (Sunday):  I started out feeling like a champ!  When it came to each 60 second jogging session, I was really flying.  But what I am not used to is pacing myself, so about 3/4 of the way through, I was really ready to throw in the towel.  Thank goodness my husband was there with me because otherwise I'm afraid I would've given up all together.  I had to stop once for a water break but after that I decided to just pour water over my head every time I got too hot -- it was pretty warm out Sunday!

Day two (Tuesday):  I went into it with the notion that somewhere along the way, I would be as miserable as I was towards the end on day one.  So I started out slow for me and I stayed that speed as best as I could the entire time.  And this couldn't have worked out more perfectly!  Not only did I make it through all of day 2, but I literally enjoyed every minute of it.  I still had to push myself and tell myself to keep going, but I didn't have that miserable feeling that I was going to quit.

So, for day three - which is tomorrow - I am actually looking forward to the exercise.  I am looking forward to being outdoors and spending time with my family... because whether I mentioned it or not, I got Tony involved in the c25k!  And since we have our handy dandy jogging stroller, he is comfortable enough to jog while pushing Presley.  I'm definitely not that comfortable yet!
Presley cheering us on!

 I've signed both Tony and myself up for the Palmer 5k on September 23rd.  I could not be more excited to accomplish this goal and check it off the old bucket list!!! 

Whether you are looking to add exercise into your routine at just a few days a week or looking to run a 5k yourself, I emphatically advise that you consider the couch to 5k program.  And if you are interested, they also have couch to 10k, couch to 13.1, and couch to 26.2!

My recommendations for the first week of C25k:

  1. If you have a smart phone, download the "C25k Free" app!  It's so handy and hassle free.  It shows you the elapsed time, the time remaining, as well as has a timer for each leg of your run.  You can also listen to music while you use this app and it will verbally alert you when to run/walk so you don't have to watch the clock tick away!
  2. STAY HYDRATED.  This makes all the difference.  If you know you are going running, make sure to drink plenty of water beforehand.  If you plan to run in the morning, I would even suggest hydrating the day before; if you plan to run in the evening, definitely hydrate the day of!  If you don't feed your body what it needs, it's not going to work efficiently for you.  This goes for diet too; if you load up on junk - you'll probably feel like junk on your run!
  3. Get your friends involved in the program!  It's so nice to have accountability partners who are not only invested in their own success, but in yours as well.
  4. If at all possible, TAKE SOMEONE WITH YOU.  If you are anything like me, you may feel like giving up the first day and if you have someone who can kindly motivate you, it may make all the difference.
  5. Again, if possible, pick a course you enjoy.  For me, it is the River Front in Moline, Illinois.  I get the sun, beautiful landscape, wildlife, and the beautiful Mississippi River -- what more could you ask for!  Likewise, if you enjoy running on a treadmill or track inside an air conditioned gym - stick with what you enjoy!
  6. Find a pace and stick to it as best as you can.  Don't start off too ambitious at first because it may end up that you burn yourself out after the first few jogging sessions.
Good luck for my buddies Dee and Brianna who have started their c25k journeys this week!  I hope you guys can end week one strong and spend the weekend resting up for week two.  Just think, after tomorrow, one week down and only eight more to go until we're able to run a 5k and look totally HOT while doing so! :)  And for anyone else looking for an accountability buddy or who may be looking to start c25k, I could always use all the help I can get to stay motivated!

Happy Hump Day,


Comments

  1. I'm planning on doing the same after my baby is born! I'm definitely not an exercise bug like my husband is so I'm hoping some of his motivation will rub off on me, ha ha. :) You can do this!

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