I am a Fitness Professional. I am a former athlete. I am fit.
These are my mantras as I begin the Couch to 5K running plan. For those of you who know me, or follow my Facebook page or blog, I am not a runner. I grew up doing gymnastics and diving, both of which are power sports where the greatest cardiovascular requirement came from the 3 minute floor exercise event (where I felt I nearly died every time). Usually, if you see me running there is either someone chasing me, a need to rescue my children or a donut at my destination.
So I am turning over a new leaf so to speak. I chose the Couch to 5K plan in order to have a simple exercise option while traveling for my new injury prevention business because as of today, I have yet to exercise while traveling. There is also that little side benefit of increasing my cardiovascular fitness as I have a family history of heart problems.
I had seen a few folks talking about the Couch to 5K plan on Facebook but I ultimately made the decision to try it after reading through this info-graphic on Pintrest. The plan was laid out in a way that I was able to talk myself into the idea that I might be able to do it. So I was off.
My ego was happy to report that I was fit enough to start on week 2 and I was not starting at the “couch” (as a fitness professional that would be embarrassing). My knees really liked the walking bits before and after jogging as I have 2 left knee reconstructions under my belt and I’m no spring chicken.
After week 2 of the plan my shins were screaming at me and the 5 minute chunk of jogging had me sucking serious wind. *This is where all those real runners out there are laughing at me. Beginning week 3, I found a little Black Eyed Peas got me through the 6 minute jogging chunks and my shins took mercy on me and eased up. Even better still, I had my cousin in town to distract me through the 7 minute chunk bringing me into week 4 this week.
In the meantime, I try to keep up with a barre class here and there plus a leg strength workout. If I only ran I would be a complete hypocrite as I firmly believe that running alone is awful for your body (skeletal muscles and joints) unless you add balanced strength training and flexibility work.
So tell me, have you tried this program? What do you think?