The Couch to 5k racing is an initial plan for beginners who want to get off their Couch and run 5 km on a treadmill in 9 weeks.
Whether you plan to be doing a 5 km run or want to lose weight and be healthier, a 5 km couch plan is the place to start.
Since this program features a design for beginners, it is a walk-and-run program.
If you have never run before or for some time, you may need to nurture your body so that you can run again. This plan features a unique method for all ages and abilities.
However, it is advisable to consult health specialists before starting the training program. The detailed guide below will help you to carry out Couch to 5k on a treadmill without issues.
Is it easier to run 5K on a treadmill?
Running outdoors is more difficult than running on a treadmill for a variety of reasons.
One reason is that the treadmill belt aids in leg turnover, making it easier to run faster.
As a result, most runners discover that their treadmill pace doesn’t correspond to their road speed.
Why you should do Couch to 5k on a treadmill?
Usually, the C25K plans take place outdoors, but sometimes you may not be able to do so due to bad weather, uneven terrain, or a lack of enough running room around your home.
These factors are the main hindrance that prevents many beginners from exercising. With the treadmill, you can train even during adverse weather conditions.
Above all, the treadmill offers the safety and comfort you need in your training room.
The advantage of a treadmill is that you have complete control over the exercise experience, the console timer, and other statistics in front of you, and find the exact time to walk or pick up the race. It allows you to know when to start walking or running if the plan requires it.
Running outdoors requires a stopwatch, and you also need to check it from time to time to know precisely the time. Typically, this distraction reduces the accuracy in timing, a problem that the treadmill eliminates.
Couch To 5k Treadmill Guide
Below is a Couch for the 5k program. The treadmill needs to be allert for you, and you are warming up.
Avoid making common mistakes on the treadmill while walking or running, such as walking or running while holding on to the rails.
Don’t worry if the plan is too easy for you at first, as it will quickly become more challenging.
What is necessary at this point is the time you spend running or walking. It is because the speed is not crucial at this point, as everyone racing at different rates.
Make sure you are comfortable when starting the exercise. The idea is that each workout is an alternate run and walk so that you can cool down from each run with a brisk walk.
The first, second, and third day can be any day of the week in this schedule.
- Day 1: 1-minute run, 2-minute walk x10
- Day 2: 1 minute of running, 2 minutes of walking x10
- Day 3: 1-minute run, 2-minute walk x10
- Duration: 10 minutes a day
- Day 1: 2 minutes of running, 2 minutes of walking x6
- Day 2: 2 minutes of running, 2 minutes of walking x6
- Day 3: 2 minutes of running, 2 minutes of walking x6
- Duration: 12 minutes a day
- Day 1: run 3 minutes and then walk 2 minutes x4
- Day 2: run 3 minutes and then walk 2 minutes x4
- Day 3: Walk 3 minutes and then walk 2 minutes x4
- Duration: 12 minutes a day
- Day 1: 5 minutes of running, 3 minutes of walking x3
- Day 2: 5 minutes of running, 2 minutes of walking x3
- Day 3: 5 minutes of running, 2 minutes of walking x3
- Duration: 15 minutes per day
- Day 1: run 8 minutes, walk 3 minutes x2
- Day 2: 8 minutes of running, 3 minutes of walking x2
- Day 3: run 8 minutes, walk 2 minutes x2
- Duration: 16 minutes a day
- Day 1: 11 minutes of running, 3 minutes of walking x2
- Day 2: 11 minutes of running, 3 minutes of walking x2
- Day 3: 11 minutes of running, 3 minutes of walking x2
- Duration: 22 minutes a day
- Day 1: run 14 minutes and then walk 4 minutes x2
- Day 2: run 14 minutes and then walk 3 minutes x2
- Day 3: run 14 minutes and then walk 2 minutes x2
- Duration: 28 minutes a day
- Day 1: run for 22 minutes
- Day 2 – run for 25 minutes
- Day 3 – run for 28 minutes
- Day 1: run for 30 minutes
- Day 2 – run 5 km! (5 km)
How fast you should run?
The starting part of the program should be a short walk which may change for everyone without any problem. If you are slim and in your 20s, a brisk walk is relatively fast.
If you are over 60 years of age or overweight, you may have a slower, brisk walk.
The speed you want to run should allow you to utter a phrase in one breath while running.
Just like jogging, you shouldn’t be out of breath or unable to talk to anyone.
Don’t worry if you feel sluggish, as speed is not critical at this point. As an indication that you are on the right track, the optimal rate is 8.0 km / h.
Warm-up and cool down
Warm-up and cooling are essential before and after each workout. Even if you have a long time of running, warming up and cooling down are still vital.
The Couch to 5k offers the option to do this before and after your standard running plan. Warm-up and cool-down mainly help to prepare the muscles for future exercises.
You only need to walk gently for about 5 minutes to cool down. You may find that this is not strictly necessary, but it is good to introduce it early in your training program.
The plan may seem simple at first, but it will soon be not easy in a few weeks, and the importance of warm-up and cooling will become even more evident.
Gradual increase is important
Regardless of your physical fitness level, walking will probably be your closest friend for the first several weeks, especially if you are a beginner.
Focus on slow progress when walking; gradually increase the speed to jogging and finally running. Keep checking the treadmill console to see when your run or walk begins and ends. Keep in mind that the plan is to evolve gradually.
Increase your speed for a few minutes and relax while walking. As you exercise, increase your racing time until you feel confident. Eventually, you will gain the necessary skills, and everything will fall into place and look effortless.
Incline exercise is beneficial, even to get a level run. Adding hills to your treadmill will significantly help you to increase speed, build muscle strength, develop endurance and manage to take longer strides.
Besides, once you train with treadmill hills, you will be able to run faster on a level surface and at the same time reduces the risk of injury.
However, do not increase the gradient too much; walk too quickly or run too fast during the training program.
It is paramount that you take the time to stretch after the run, as this will help you to recover and prevent injuries.
As a precaution, you can also apply ice to your feet for 3-5 minutes after running. Runners do generally not freeze their feet until after long stretches, but this can help reduce swelling and relieve pain even after a short time of stretching.
Don’t forget to include cross-training in your C25k training plan. It can help you get stronger, avoid boredom and prevent injury.
Some examples include yoga, cycling, rowing machines, and Pilates. However, as you carry it out, keep in mind the main training plan and avoid exhausting yourself with cross-training.
Treadmill running shoes
One thing you shouldn’t forget is the need for proper running shoes. When choosing running shoes, pay attention to the shoe’s cushioning, support, durability, and breathability. You may need a pair of running shoes that are stable, grip well, and sturdy.
Most importantly, you may need shoes that passively resist the treadmill’s movement as you run. Unless you are plan for a power walk on the treadmill, very soft shoes are not a good choice. The good thing is that you can use the shoes that you use to run on a treadmill for outside running as they feature the same design.
Time or distance
Remember that the treadmill allows you to easily follow the C25k schedule because it tells you how much you ran and when. Depending on your needs, find out whether you want to focus on time or distance. The time may be better if you start, while the speed may be better if you’re going to try a little.
Don’t start too fast but walk faster while exercising, and the most important thing is to get off the Couch and get on the treadmill. However, you may want to write down how much time it takes to run a mile when you first start a plan and then compare the number at the end of the program. You will be surprised at your progress.
Finally, you must monitor your runs or walks daily to monitor your performance. It is a source of motivation and helps you remember how much you are doing each day.
Here are some essential points to remember:
- Keep on checking the treadmill console to find out when your run or walk begins and ends.
- Drink enough water to ensure you are well hydrated.
- Make sure you warm-up and cool down for about 5 minutes before and after the training exercise.
- Don’t go too fast or adjust the treadmill incline too much when running or walking on the treadmill.
- The plan intends to build you up gradually.
- If the week is challenging, repeat the previous week to improve your fitness.
- Don’t eat right before a run because your muscles need oxygenated blood, not the stomach
- Run three days a week, preferably taking a day off after each run.
- It doesn’t want to be something you fear, but something you hope for, and that way, you will find it inspiring in no time.
In conclusion, the time you spend walking or running increases every week.
At the end of this training plan, you will be having all the necessary skills of a competent runner.
The government recommends 30 minutes of exercise five days a week to obtain maximum health benefits. You will be doing these three days a week, but you can add them in case you wish.
What you plan to do after completing the Couch to 5K training is up to you as you can decide to walk long distances or incorporate slow speed into your runs.
Typically, this will help you to speed up your regular runs. Hopefully, the above guide will help to do Couch to 5k on the treadmill without any problems.