It is week 3 of the Couch 2 5k program and the running intervals have officially been upgraded from seconds to minutes. It may not look like a lot but I will be honest, this small change really scared me. Training for week 3 consisted of a 5 minute warm-up, 90 seconds of running, 90 seconds of walking, 3 minutes of running, 3 minutes of walking and repeat. I know running is mostly a mental game, and I think that is why it is so difficult for me. My brain tells me that I need to stop but I have to convince it that I can keep going.
The first day went better than expected, which I’ve noticed is a trend. I have low expectations for myself so I am shocked when I actually complete my workout on the first day. The second day I actually had an interim running buddy for the last half of my workout and the distraction of talking really helped keep my mind off of the length of time. The third day the temperatures dipped back down so breathing became an issue again, but I finished another week and that accomplishment feels great.
Running this week has also given my mind a break regarding some other big changes that are happening in my life right now (when I am able to share these developments, I will). I love having an outlet to take my mind off of the stresses in my life, I am starting to understand why people love running. My interim run buddy, Stacy, who works in my office pointed out that while the goal of the 5k training plan is to run for 30 minutes straight, to equal a 5k distance that would be a 10 minute mile which is probably a bit over optimistic. I hadn’t thought of it that way but she was right. I’m probably looking at closer to a 45 minute 5k so by race time I need to be able to run for that amount of time. Those numbers are a bit terrifying.
I’m taking the plan one step at a time. Each day I learn something new about my own ability and as long as I believe I can do this, I can. Next week the plan continues to challenge me, I’m going to have to run 90 seconds, 3 minutes, and 5 minutes. My walking time will also be less than the time I spend running. It is a challenge, but I think if I can mentally get passed the numbers, then I can achieve this.