How to Successfully Use C25K

If you know people that are into health, fitness & weight loss, chances are, you’ve heard of C25K. Short for, “Couch to 5K,” C25K is an app that coaches you to gradually work your way up to running a 5K (3 miles). It’s aimed toward “couch potatoes” or people who just aren’t runners but it’s actually a great tool for anyone of any fitness level.

Even if you have no interest in running a 5K, using this app makes jogging & walking more fun, especially on the treadmill. It is great for building stamina & strength, which will be good for your cardiovascular health. And if weight loss is your goal, any walking & jogging you can squeeze into your day is going to help you.

If you’re already a runner, chances are good that the program will work for you, as is. But if you’re just a casual jogger or you are truly a couch potatoe who only runs if you’re being chased by an axe murderer, listen up. You may need to make some modifications to be successful.

The first week starts off very modestly with a 5 minute warm up, followed by 20 minutes of alternating between 60 seconds of jogging & 90 minutes of walking, followed by a 5 minute cool down. Now, I’m sure that there is probably a preferred speed for the walking & jogging. But the app doesn’t really mention it. Nor do I think it’s a big deal. So for me, I do 3 mph walking & 4 mph jogging. Use what works best for you. You can increase your speed later down the line. 

Weeks 2-4 are very similar in nature. But by week 5, you’re asked to jog 15 straight minutes. By week 6, 20 minutes. Week 7, 25. And by week 8, a full 30 minute 5K. 

That, for me, is too quick of an increase. Especially since the program only asks you to do the workouts 3 times a week (tho I usually do them 5 days a week by repeating workouts within that week). I have tried & only gotten frustrated & wanted to quit completely.

So if you’re like me & you think the program moves too fast, do not be afraid to modify it. Repeat each week twice if you need to. Hell, repeat them 3 times if you need to. 

I think any exercise or diet plan can work for anyone as long as you modify it to meet your needs. There’s no shame in knowing your limits & working around them. You really can’t fail this program unless you quit. So if it gets tough, don’t quit, modify.

I have made C25K a part of my fitness routine, especially during the winter. It’s just another tool to help get me where I want to go. I hope it may help you too. If you decide to try it, let me know. And if you want help or encouragement, contact me anytime. I’m all over social media. Good luck! 

One thought on “How to Successfully Use C25K

  1. I used to use this app during undergrad and quit because I could never jog for more than 2 minutes straight. I am SO unfit and should probably start jogging again lol! I didn’t think to repeat weeks though, I’ll definitely give that a shot – thanks!

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