Couch to 5K: Week 5 – 12 Minutes is Nothing Now!

Twelve minute run? Pfft! I can run 20. B-)

So Week 5 of Couch to 5K is now ticked off of my to-do list! There were three separate runs this week instead of the same one three times.

  1. 5mins x3 with 3mins walking between
  2. 8mins x2 with 5mins walking between
  3. 20mins with no rest!

On Wednesday (run two) I did something very, very silly. I listened ahead to see what I would be doing the next time. When I heard twenty minutes I nearly dropped dead of shock. Eight minutes in one go to 20 is quite the jump! I was fully convinced I could not do it. So much so that I left it until today instead of yesterday.

My #100DaysofHappiness post; never seen anyone so happy, while being so tired! Time to put the feet up.

But somehow, I did it! I thought the eight minute runs were hard but this wasn’t actually that much harder. My legs were sore but my breathing was fine so I kept going. The narrator would tell me each time five minutes had passed and after the first I was like, ‘huh, already?’ But when she said 15 minutes was up I was ecstatic! I actually ran the last five minutes faster because I was so delighted I had done my 12 minute run and not even noticed! It’s been on my Bucket List for so long now.

For those of you who don’t know, when I was 16 and in Transition Year, our PE teacher was training us for the 12 minute run. In the end I could only accomplish 11 and a half minutes before my lungs would almost jump out of my chest. I was the only person in my class of 54 who never got their certificate. Being 16 I was highly embarrassed by this and it was even less understandable because I wasn’t even close to overweight; if anything I was underweight. I never had another chance to redeem myself and almost six years on it still bothered me.

Not anymore! The first 12 minutes of today’s run were no bother at all so it’s safe to say my fitness level is on the up and up! I may not have a cert but I no longer have nagging doubts in my head telling me I can’t do it. I know I can because I just did!


Admittedly my knee is sore, and it is my own fault. I did one lap of the pitch before I got bored and traded the grass in for the footpath so I could see the campus and get a change of scenery. It might not be good for my physical health but it was very good for my mental health and motivation. My friend Julie once said that half of our fitness is in our minds. Our negative thinking is what holds us back half the time from reaching our goals. Running on the grass is fine for my knee pain but if I’m running in circles and not able to track my distance, I feel like I’m getting nowhere. It’s very much a downer.

So I may be hobbling up and down the stairs for today but it’s totally been worth it for that satisfactory ticking off on my Bucket List.

The usual sidebar: I’m training for the Run in the Dark in Cork in November and I’m raising money for animal welfare. You can sponsor me here if you wish. Every little helps! 🙂


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