Couch to 5K and One Hour Runners


Questions about starting C25K after running a half marathon (kinda long post...) (Read 314 times)


    Okay, Gang....I need some suggestions for starting my C25K plan. Here's the deal: I started "running" using the Galloway Run/Walk program in January 06 after having lost about 80 pounds. In April 06 I started training for the October Chicago marathon. For a variety of reasons I only completed 17 miles during the Chicago Marathon, but hey, it was the funnest 17 mile training run I'd ever had! In January 07 (having now lost about 100 pounds or so) I started training (still using the Galloway method) for the Country Music Half Marathon, which I completed last weekend. But I run/walk really slowly, so the half took me just over 3 hours to complete (average 14:30 min/mile pace). Also, I'm not really losing any more weight (I bounce around in a 10 pound range) and I still have about 50 or so pounds to lose. So my thought was that I would start the C25K program and aim to run the 3 miles consistently at a pace of about 10 min/mile. I know this might require that I repeat weeks during the C25K program, and I'm okay with that. When I've done speed work during my run/walk program in training for the half, I've run at a highest pace of about 9:15 min/mile, but for only 1-2 minutes at a time for 45 minutes total. I've had no problems and no injuries in using the Galloway training program, but would like to be running faster and running without walking, for the most part. I'm also hoping that running for less time but at a faster pace will help boost my metabolism more, especially since I won't have to be eating to support the long training runs required in preparing for marathon (or half marathon) running. Does this make sense to you more experienced people? I realized about halfway through the training for the half that I've really gone at the process of becoming a runner in a very backwards way--given that my first goal race was a marathon and my second was a half. The only other race I've run was a 5K about 2 weeks before the half. It just seemed to make sense that maybe I should train myself to run shorter distances, then decide if I still want to train to run longer distances....isn't that what most people do? The other question I had was about what kind of exercise I should do on top of the C25K program to keep me exercising for 45-60 minutes 3x/week (as is recommended for weight loss). On the other 3 days a week, I plan to walk or bike or swim and do some strength training, the same kind of cross training I've been doing in preparing for the half. Sorry for the long post, but I could use some guidance from folks who are farther along in their running development.... Carol

    Princess Cancer Pants

      I don't see why that wouldn't work--though I have a feeling it will be hard to *only* run 3 shorter runs/week when you have already completed a HM and more. Wink As for cross-training, I really like doing weight work (I use Cathe Friedrich DVDs at least 2x/week). It's so very different from running, so it gives me good variety. I also use different muscles as well as strengthening my running muscles. I think it has really enhanced my running...I've defintely found that I've picked up the pace in the last month or two. I also like the contours (especially in my arms) that running, alone, didn't give me. Plus I'm getting both aerobic AND muscle strength work, which seems to be the best combo for weight loss for me (at least when I'm not in hardcore training and eating to fuel my runs mode, like right now). k

      '17 Goals:

      • Chemo

      • Chemo-Radiation

      • Surgery

      • Return to kicking my own ass by 2018


      She was not strong. She was valiant. Radiant. Brave and broken. The beauty she discovered in the aftermath was unparalleled to anything she had known before, because it had come at such a cost.

      ~ Unknown

        Hi, Carol. From what you say and what I can see on your log, it looks to me like you're well past where the C25K plan can take you and you probably wouldn't get much benefit from it. "Where next" is a tough question we newer runners all have to face. Did you like the half marathon distance? I did my first HM last year in 2:59... just BARELY under 3 hours. I'm hoping to be finishing somewhere around 2:45 this weekend at the Flying Pig half marathon in Cincinnati. I have at least 30 more pounds to lose before I'm down to the top of the "normal" weight range for me, and would do better with about 50 instead. Undecided The C25K plan is designed to take people from only being able to walk 30 minutes 3x/wk to being able to run for 30 minutes straight. Even though you've done walk/run the whole time (if I'm reading you right) you probably are adapted enough to running that you could run for a half hour today if you wanted to. It sounds instead like you're saying you want to do two things - let me know if I'm understanding you right. 1) You want to run faster than you're doing. 2) You want to lose weight. It sounds like you're saying you're done with Galloway. Is that right? Galloway's a great way to start running without getting hurt, and the fact that you were able to run a marathon in your first year and that you're still running and sound like you're enjoying it is FANTASTIC! Way to go! You can go several ways from here. Probably easiest for you would be to pick another goal race to train for, and to try another training program. Why not go for another half marathon and see if you can improve your time? I'd suggest Hal Higdon's programs for where you are right now, either the novice or possibly the intermediate, depending on if you want to start adding in other types of runs now or not. You can find these at If you want more advice on training, I'd suggest joining the coaching group on RunningAHEAD at There are a number of excellent, experienced voices in that group. For losing weight with running, it's just like you already know - balancing calories in with calories out. One mile = approximately 100 calories... so you want to be running as many miles per week that your body and schedule can handle. Look at your weekly milages, try to even them out a bit, and then shoot to increase your weekly milage by no more than 10% each week. Every third or fourth week give yourself a rest week where you cut back the milage by about 1/2. If you keep increasing by 10% (along with throwing in the easy weeks here and there) you'll get your distances up there without completely stressing out your body. When things start to hurt or you start feeling tired a lot or the workouts stop being fun and start being just a chore, back it down a week or two's level and then try to hold that milage level for a while (read: few months). You can do this even if you're not training for a specific race. Biking and swimming are great cross-training exercises, as you're already aware. Congratulations on your great progress so far! You're doing wonderful! Janell

        Roads were made for journeys...


          Kirsten & Janell, Thanks for the advice. I've been a slacker this week (this happened last year after the marathon, too), but have been thinking about what I want to do for my new training program. Unfortunately, it looks like I've hit a little snag and at the end of May I'll be having surgery to repair the joint in the big toe on my right foot. The good news is since I've had this rigid joint for 5 years, the doc expects my running will be a lot easier once I have the mobility back in the joint, and I should only be out of running for 5-6 weeks.... So, my plan for the rest of the month before surgery is to work on building some slow, steady miles, as Janell suggested. We'll see how much consistent running I can do and aim to even it out across the week (instead of just such long runs on the weekends). After that I guess I'll be on the bench for most of June....and will have to start all over again come July! Thanks, anyway, for the support! Carol
            Sorry to hear you'll be out for a while. Be sure to join the On the Bench group at

            Roads were made for journeys...