Day 1: Couch to 5k!

Wait, what?

Yep, you read that right…  On Friday, I hopped on the treadmill and completed Day 1 of the Couch to 5k program.

But hold on…  Didn’t I run a marathon (well, two marathons) a little over 6 months ago?  Two half marathons this year?  A 10 miler just last month?

Well, yes.

So why the hell am I doing a program so I can run a 5k, when I CAN actually run a 5k (and more!) already?

Go look at my times.  Not so good, right?  Compare my half marathon time this year, with my best time last year.  Or my 10 miler time this year, with the one last year

My times are actually getting slower!  Sure, there’s injury and weight gain to blame, but how does one get out of a funk, when it’s not like I have another marathon planned for 2011 (I don’t even know how I’d run a 20 miler training run in Manila!), since it was the loooong runs after all, that made my shorter runs faster?

So I had considered the idea in the past, but read that Tyly is successfully doing it, and since I’m bored on the treadmill anyway, why not try it?

Try what exactly?  Well, the Couch to 5k program, but not to achieve a 5k distance, but to be able to run a FASTER 5k, and hopefully other distances as well.   After all, at the end of the day, it’s just an interval workout, isn’t it?

So instead of going to the treadmill and doing 3 miles at a steady pace, I hopped on, knowing I only had 20 minutes to complete (plus a 5 minute warm up/cool down walk).  Day 1 requires alternating 60 seconds of running with 90 of walking.  I can do ANYTHING for 60 seconds!

I put the incline to a 0.5, and chose to do walk at the “4” level (or a 15 min/mile), and run at the 6.5 level (somewhere around a 9:20 pace, check out this helpful chart if you’re running on the treadmill).  Turns out I wasn’t even tired towards the end, so my second to last interval was done at a 7 (8:40ish pace), which I could tell would be too much to try to pull it off for every interval, and though I started my last running interval also at a 7, I changed it to 8.5 (7:15ish) for the last 30 seconds.

Lessons learned?  6.5 is too slow for such short intervals, but 7 might be too fast to be able to keep up, specially after I start increasing the interval times.  Next time, I’m trying at 6.7 (9:10ish), as a happy medium, and hopefully is challenging enough, without being impossible.  I mean, my best 5k time is around that pace anyway.

Also?  Thinking of your treadmill times in 60 and 90 seconds makes the time go by MUCH faster, and for once I didn’t want to stab myself repeatedly in the eyes out of pure boredom.

This might just help in making me faster…  And I figured it might be the perfect opportunity to try to get used to these shoes I bought ages ago, and hope they’ll also help with my tendency to injure myself while running (yes, my plantar fasciitis has been flaring up, and though I brought my ultrasound machine with me, I packed the gel with the rest of my move.  Not too smart…).

I’ll be posting updates!  And yes, I’m looking forward to running 3 times a week again!  And hopefully it’ll help put me back down to my marathon training weight?  I’m at least 15lbs heavier than I was 6 months ago.  *sigh*

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15 Comments

Filed under Five Fingers, Treadmill Run

15 responses to “Day 1: Couch to 5k!

  1. elizabethlacy

    This is great idea! I might copy it. 🙂 I want to be faster!!

  2. That’s a great idea.. good luck getting faster!! 🙂

  3. chubrubb

    Hi! I think this is my first time commenting on your blog, but I’ve been reading it a lot – so inspiring!
    I love your idea of doing Couch to 5k to increase your time… I hope it works out for you!
    I travel a lot for work and I’d never dare run outside say in Kazakhstan, South Korea… I always feel like a weird animal already when I’m just walking around! So kudos to you!!

  4. I know you’re going to do great with it!!! 🙂

  5. I think this is a great idea!! I can’t wait to see how it goes and how it helps with your speed!

  6. I just started this exact thing today!! I came back and decided to check out my favorite running blogs and saw our workouts were almost exactly the same!!I ran at 6.7 and walked at 4.0! On .5 % incline. I figure I can run a 5k at a 10 min mile pace, why can’t I train to run faster!

    I am also doing some p90x, so I am not sure that I fit running 3 days and all the workouts in but I am going to try! Can’t wait to see how you do!

  7. Pingback: Day 1: Couch to 5k! | I Run, You Run | How to Run a 5k

  8. Pingback: We FINALLY moved! A house tour! | I Run, You Run

  9. Pingback: Adventures on the treadmill… | I Run, You Run

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