5K - for anyone else who's been told it's easy

Hi everyone

Anyone else been told that the 5K they've been pushing to get fit enough to manage is "nothing"?

I started running in February from a base line of utterly rubbish fitness.  First trip out I managed 8 very slow minutes before I had to stop for a walk; on Sunday I did my 2nd 5K fun run race thingy in a tiny bit under 32 minutes - and RAN IT ALL image.  Am very, very proud of that.

Now, I know I'm not fast and I know 5K isn't a marathon (obviously, but you know what I mean) but all the same IT DOESN'T FEEL LIKE NOTHING! Maybe it will one day but right now it's still like pushing an elephant up a hill, not quite literally! 

 So, just wanted to say to anyone else who's plodding through the "nothing to 5K" slog of starting out with this running lark, well done, I think we're fantastic.

(I should add that the "5K is nothing " comment wasn't meant at all harshly, more a kind of "wow that's not far maybe I could do that too", which is ace and some company would be nice but still...)




  • StrayceltStraycelt ✭✭✭
    It's all relative. Most people who make comments like that can''t or won't do it and have been overexposed to media hype about other distances. Park it where it belongs and be proud of what you have done, are doing and are aiming for in the future. keep on running!
  • who cares what others think. running is all about personal achievements.

     just enjoy yourself and be happy that you have pushed your body to it's current limits.

  • I think a lot of the '5k is nothing' mentality comes from the Race for Life events. People see that someone who's 60+ can do it, someone who's 10 stones overweight can do it, someone who's never even run for a bus can do it and they think that's how everyone does a 5k.

    I remember when I first was able to run 5k without stopping and I was chuffed. Everyone else should be too - everyone had to start somewhere.

  • Well done to anyone who can now run 5K when they couldn't before - you've still achieved loads more than most people.

    Sadly, ignorant downplaying of your achievements doesn't stop at 5K. When you complete a HM, you may hear 'When are you going to do a full one?', and even after a Marathon, people have been known to ask 'Just the one?'. It's all down to the over-hyping of certain distances, and to celebrities doing seven marathons in seven days or something similar.

    You don't, of course have to get on the treadmill of ever increasing distance. You can work on doing a shorter distance faster (or just enjoying that distance for its own sake. I've been working on 5K - HM distances for a while now and have never done a Marathon. I do plan to do one next year, though - I'm getting on a bit and wouldn't want to regret never having done one.

  • I've been running for about 6 months after a knee injury 3 years ago from playing football. I've managed about 2 or 3 5k runs without stopping. I felt really chuffed with myself each time and I agree it doesn't matter what others think, it really is all about personal achievement.

    There is no better feeling than doing a pb, no matter how far.

  • Yep it's all relative - agree with Doug about marathon obsession in this country too - perhaps more emphasis on 'how fast' rather than 'how far' might lead to standards improving.

    Reminds me of my mate who got to the final of the 1500m indoor UK final (which Mo Farah blitzed) and came last. A girl in his office, when told how far the race was and that he doesn't do long races replied..

    'So you're not good enough to do a marathon then?' image

    Anyway Mole, keep going and soon 5k will feel like 'nothing'

  • I just did 3.5 miles last night for the first time - and was thoroughly proud of myself on two counts.....1)it's my longest non stop run to date and 2) i believed i had more to give and could have went on if i wanted to.

    I agree that you should be proud of whatever you achieve through your own endeavour - and take no notice of any "belittlers" especially mugs who can't even tie their shoe laces, let alone run a few miles for pleasure!

  • Well done, Mole, for sticking at it. Each distance is difficult in its own way. A lot of people who enjoy doing ultras and marathons find 5k hard because they find they can't cope with the relatively fast speed and struggle with it. I quite like the distance because, though I'm not particularly fast (a sub-20 minuter) I find I can keep my speed up well for this relatively short distance. I guess it's horses for courses. Anyone who runs at all to the best of their ability over any distance has my thumbs up anyway. Keep doing it, but don't kill yourself.
  • Hog-mouseHog-mouse ✭✭✭

    5k is never nothing. It's a short distance yes but every time you race it you try and push yourself harder.

    We all have to start somewhere and they is no rule that says that you have to run long distance.

    When I get back into running I'm going to find 5k hard.

    It is good that you think 'I can do that' and actually went out and did it.

  • Lots and lots of people couldn't run 5k. As someone above said, Race for Life has given the distance a literally "anyone can do it" tag but a lot of people doing race for life walk round chatting with a mate and most people probably can do that - running the whole way is a different kettle of fish entirely.
  • kaffeegkaffeeg ✭✭✭

    kittenkat - NOooooooooo, that's marathon snobbery!  I hope ye jest!

    Mole - ignore them! 

    When I started running about 5 years ago, 5k was such a long way it was a great sense of achievement completing my first few races. I never forget building up to running for 10 minutes, then 15 minutes, then 20 minutes and how great it all felt. If I knew then that I would be running a marathon in 5 years time, I would never ever ever have believed it!  I think that is what is great about running, there are really good goals that you can set yourself and you can really see yourself improve (whatever distance you do - which really is irrlevant  as it's about effort you put in) and amaze yourself with the achievements. Whether that is improving you 5k time or increasing your distance.

  • Its so hard to generalise, when few of us know each other. If you are 22 and play foootball every week, then i would say 5k shouldn't be too hard to do. Then it depends on your time. If you are (dare i say) older and fairly unfit, then 5k is an achievement. All releative.

    As a new runner, 5k is my favourite distance, and time. I'm not realy into "long runs". The most i've done is 10 miles. My aim is to get my pb nearer to 20 minutes with interval training. I dont see why you cannot have a really good workout in 30 minutes.

  • Mole: personal feeling is that it's all relative. I'd rather run a half marathon as hard as i can than do 5k at pace....

    It isn't easy if you've not done it. The first time I managed it without walking, it hurt, made me sore, gave me DOMS but I was over the moon. Also it was the point I got totally addicted to distance. You should be proud of your achivement. If you want to get quicker, you will do. Good luck and ignore the negative vibes, they be vexations for he soul....
  • Mole. I agree. I started running in November. After that first run, 5k might as well be marathon distance. But once I got to 5 the sense of achievement was huge. I have now entered my first 5k race and am very nervous. 

     I agree with the comment about race for life type fun runs gives a false perception with the sight of hundreds completing the distance I just do not think people appreciate how hard it is to learn pacing and drive down your times.

    There are a lot of "knockers" out there when you discuss running. I find that people who do zero exercise will like to tell you how your knees are being ruined and others who are generally fit but not Runners will be competetive with you.

  • Steve Rand 7 wrote (see)

    There are a lot of "knockers" out there

    Must be the weather we are having....image

    Sorry couldn't resist...image

    5K,10K Half or Full Marathon easy for some not so easy for others ..but the latter will feel as they have achieved more

  •  It's a significant distance in anyone's book whether you are trying to do it in one go for the first time or do it in 15 mins. 

    Having done a few parkruns now I have a greater respect for runners of all ages and abilities. Everyone is at their own limit - it's as hard for the 30 minuters as it is for the sub-17ers. The achievement is putting in the training then being prepared to push yourself to YOUR limit - not merely completing a certain distance.  

    Get the nay-sayers out to a parkrun and see how  they go. They may be quicker than you but they will be humbled when they finish after a few 70 year olds!! I know I am.

  • kaffeegkaffeeg ✭✭✭

    madmickie - many many a time have I been beaten by 70+ year olds.  It's a sad sad sad day when I get a sense of satisfaction as I have acutally beaten them for a change!

    Sometimes you can't judge people on how they look to how they run.  I've been at loads of racers where I think I am an imposter infront of all these toned people, with not an inch of fat on them, all wearing the hightech gear.  And then me. Then they all set off at an alarming pace and naturally i am at the back. But slowly and surely, a good number of them fall back and I get to over take them one by one.  Much to their annoyance! hehe!

    Run. Enjoy.  Who gives a fig about what others say.

  • I quite agree kaffeeg - I was overtaken by a slim, blonde thing yesterday who was hardly breaking a sweat, and yet I did one of my best runs in a while. Whenever I run 5k without stopping I am chuffed as nuts, and yet my other half has run about a million HMs and 10ks, and could do 5k in his sleep. It's all relative!!

    Unless you're a pro, your only competition is yourself, so thanks for starting this thread Mole - we are indeed fantastic! image
  • Totally agree, as a struggling newbie signed up for a 5k in June, I know how chuffed I'll feel when I do run it!

    I power walked a marathon last year, did all the training, which is quite aq commitment in itself, managed it in a decent time, and still my work colleague asked me when I was going to do a 'proper' marathon image. And no, I haven't bothered to tell him I have taken up running.

  • 5k is never nothing. I started couch25k last August. Since then I've done 2 5k events, 4 parkruns and one 10k. I've lost 4 stone in the last year and still got a way to go. Each training run, each Parkrun means the world to me. And they are still hard. For me the finishing is the achieving.
  • I find putting my trainers on and getting my bottom out of the door the toughest part of any run; especially when it's raining.

    But with regards the distance, a journey of 1000 miles starts with the first step, as they say.
  • Hi everyone, I just wanted to say thanks for all the replies image...three months late!  Sorry! I've been away from here for a while...

    I completely agree about the marathon and race for life affecting people's perceptions of how much effort running even a little way involves - particularly if you start from a base line of lardball couch potato like me! And I've just done a 10K...without stopping image!


  • I have always avoided running/jogging and other similar activities (reason being I don’t enjoy it).I started on the Six Week Beginner Schedule, which states it is “A basic 5K schedule that assumes you don’t run at all yet, and designed to get you round comfortably with a few short breaks”.


    I am in week 5 and going out 3 times a week. I am not able to run for more than 2¼ minutes (gasping for breath and have to revert to a walk) and I should be doing 9 minutes.


    By pure coincidence I have had tests done at the Doc's and received my results a couple of weeks ago and am very healthy.


    I am 62 years old, now getting demoralised and feeling pretty useless not being able to keep up to the plan.I have lost 2 kgs though so will keep going.


    I took a look at another training programme on this web site stating "Whatever your level of fitness you should comfortably be able to build from nothing to running continuously for 30 minutes in 8 weeks". Don't think so.Or should I change Doctors!!!

  • Hog-mouseHog-mouse ✭✭✭

    No. just run slower. Youw jog for 9 mins. can walk for 9 mins without a break yes. So you are fit enough to try a very slo

    oh damn cat - look what you've done to my post.

    Run slower. Try a brisk walk, how many minutes can you continue walkinf for?
    I had a friend who was doing a warm up jog for a race, I was walking next to her chatting away, until she pointed out that she was out of breath trying to warmup and there I was not breaking a sweat walking next to her.

    Point being, you may need to be jogging slower than you can walk. For starters only.

    Keep plodding on. I was saying "I can do this" today as I was out trying to run.

  • Sandra, has your doctor checked you for asthma? My partner was like you, out of breath etc. Turned out he has mild asthma. Now with the inhaler, he is a pocket rocket!

  • Y'know what I notice? The ones who say things like '5k, is that all?' or 'Oh, that' s not very far' are usually non- runners, with absolutely no idea of what it actually feels like to run/jog the distance they're talking about!

  • It took me 18 months to get to 5K , since last 6 months i'm up to 10 miles. Getting to thats first 5K was by far the hardest part and it's the part I'm most proud of as it would have been so easy to quit.

    SW2 as others have said run slower and take your time, I had to start off just walking my route 3 times a week to being with to help my leg muscles cope before I could add the run parts in.

  • 5k hurts!...its "eyeballs out" all the way....

  • Agree with AliBear, that first 5k gives you such a buzz. My first day of exercise was 2mins jog, 1min walk for 10mins. I was absolutely kn@ckered after the first 2 mins. But I have stuck at it and can now do 6 miles.

Sign In or Register to comment.