I have never been a runner, so I didn't know how to run. If I wanted to run well, I needed something to help me train. I did a google search, read comments on virtual forums, and scoured the internet for some advice. Finally I found the answer!
Enter Couch to 5K.
Couch to 5K is a training program that teaches you how to run (5 kilometers or 3.1 miles) in a short 8 weeks. I didn't think I'd be able to accomplish this task, but throughout this whole journey, I constantly surprised myself with my accomplishments. During this time, I ran my first mile since high school. I also ran my first (ever) mile in under 10 minutes. It feels amazing to do things that I have never been able to do. And I'm not going to ever look back!
To make this journey a little bit easier, I downloaded the Couch to 5K app on my phone and used that. This was great! I highly recommend this app if you are interested in learning how to run. The app is free. The program is eight weeks and you are supposed to run three days a week. Each session has a five minute warm up walk and a five minute cool down walk. The following are images from my first session. You can see the time that had elapsed, the time that was remaining for the entire session and the time that remained for the current activity. The program has you alternating between walking and jogging for different amounts of time. You start small and build your way up. You can also play the music in your iTunes library on your phone, which I really enjoyed.
There were many tough days during this journey. Many days that I didn't want to finish. Days that I didn't think I could finish. And days that I never want to re-live again. However, I'm happy to say that the ONLY session that I didn't finish in it's entirety was the very last session. But, I was okay with that because it took me the entire 8 weeks to get to that point. And I was running my first 5K (which I'll blog about soon) that Saturday. I didn't want to push myself too hard before the 5K and I truly was only a few minutes short of the ending time. I just physically wasn't able to complete that session.
Now, I can officially say that I am a graduate of the Couch to 5K program and I am a runner!
Do you run? Have you ever run a 5K? I'd love to hear about it!