Beginner Running

C25K and slow folks: First 5k time?

posted over 8 years ago | Report

I have some questions for anyone who had to really work hard to get to the point of running 5k. What was your time for your very first 5k? Were you able to run the whole thing? If now, how much did you walk? Is there anything you did that first time that you should have done differently? Anything you did that helped?

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  • On my final day of c25k back in May 2009, I decided that I would run the whole 5k distance. Took me 48:56. This was just on my own. Then I did an actual 5k race in June 2009 and finished that in 43:11. Both times I did run the entire time with no stopping.

    I don't know if I would have done anything differently. I just set out to do the thing and kept telling myself that my speed (or lack thereof) did not matter. It was my goal not to walk at all.

    One thing I would watch out for is starting out too fast. It is very, very easy to do in a race. You will be running alongside other people going faster than normal but you don't even realize it. Until the end when you start to fade. So start conservatively and finish strong.

    posted over 8 years ago

  • My first 5k after law school took me 43:42. Three months later I did another 5k in 27:19. This year I broke the 20-minute mark. I hope to break 19 minutes next year.

    If I could redo the thing again, I would have tried to slow down my training in the beginning. Who cares if you walk? Seriously. The biggest barrier to entry for running is being okay with being slow. I would run/walk until I could comfortably run. I would also smile more.

    posted over 8 years ago

  • I ran my first 5k the end of August. I was a nervous hyper, wreck.(but that is just my personality). It was so fun and exciting. The energy of the group will move you.
    I had two goals;
    To finish
    To run
    I was able to do both and boy was I happy. Now I run very slow but to me it is about finishing.I am running my second 5k this Friday night. I was joking with my family that I hope it doesn't get totally dark by the time I finish. LOL
    Really you are ready, and you will do great. I was amazed at the different shapes, sizes and ages of the runners. Was sooo glad not to be the oldest. LOL
    My goals again will be to finish and run. It would be great to beat my own time, but for me finishing is the main thing. I also remind myself that three months ago, I would have never even considered running in a 5k. I can't wait to hear all about your race.

    Also there are many,many runners that wallk part of the way. I think it is about setting your own personal goals.

    posted over 8 years ago

  • My first 5k time was 47:23, May 2010. And I was sooo proud. Still am. At that point, I had lost about 50 pounds, and was doing something that I never thought I could.

    I've run one other 5k, and that I finished in 39:08, September 2010.

    Next one is this saturday, and my goal is run most, if not all of it. Even if my jog is barely a shufle, I'm gonna shuffle my way through the whole thing.

    posted over 8 years ago

  • I've learned a lot from each of the 5Ks I've done, so I'm going to tell you all about them :)

    My first 5K was in June, 2009. I finished in 38:53. I did a walk/run, but can't remember the ratio. My second 5K was Sep, 2009 and my goal was to run the whole way without stopping - which I did. My time was 38:03 (not such a big difference from walk/run). I did not train properly for that race and I was not ready to run the whole thing, I ended up with shin splints and it took a long time to recover.

    After race #2, I started working with a running coach. She put me on a strict walk/run program to the point that I was bored with walking, but I did what she told me to do. 5K #3 was completed in 40:14, nice and slow, no pain afterward. This was pretty much a training run, but I ran with a group of people that happened to be racing :) That was March 17, 2010.

    5K #4, March 20, 2010 was a hellish run. It was 1.5 miles downhill and turn around and run 1.5 miles uphill! I thought I was going to die. I had obviously not prepared for that! Total time was 41:34 and the end result was Plantar Fasciitis, which I am just NOW getting over!

    Things I would have told myself for each of the races:
    Race #1 - You will do fine. Don't feel self-conscience about walking. You will not come in last, plenty of people will walk the entire way. You should feel proud just to get to the starting line and see how far you've come! The finish line is just the icing on the cake.

    Race #2 - Having a goal is great, but achieving the goal without hurting your body is even better. Take it slow and go for your goal next time, there will be plenty of other races if you listen to your body and train properly - this could be your last race if you don't.

    Race #3 - You rock! Nice and slow, walk when you want, run when you want.

    Race #4 - Definitely, the lesson learned here is to know your course. If you did not train to run on hills, please do not race on hills! If you are in a race that you did not prepare for, feel free to walk the entire thing.

    The biggest lesson I learned from getting Plantar Fasciitis is to listen to your body, not to your ego. Your ego will tell you that you're not fast enough, you're not strong enough, you walk too much, etc. Your body will tell you when you're tired, you need a rest, you need to walk. Do not buy into the "no pain, no gain" mentality. It's not worth it. I have had to miss dozens of races, milestones and goals because of my foot. I would rather have ran a slow race than to stand on the sidelines.

    posted over 8 years ago

  • in reply to what Michele S. said:I've learned a lot from each of the 5Ks I've done, so I'm going to tell you all about them :) My first 5K was in June, 2009. I finished in 38:53. I did a walk/run, but can't remember the ratio. My second 5K was Sep, 2009 and m... read more

    Very well said, Michelle!

    posted over 8 years ago

  • Thank you for all of the tips and perspectives!

    I think I'm going to be thrilled if I come in at anything less than 50 minutes - realistically it's not going to be very much less than that, if I even make that goal. But I am going to just focus on making sure I pace myself. I'm going to try my first outdoor run tomorrow - so far I've just been doing the treadmill.

    > listen to your body, not to your ego

    Yup, that's my challenge exactly. Very nice to know I'm not alone, and that much more experienced and faster runners are trying their best to pound this into my head!

    I had to chuckle at this, though:

    >If you did not train to run on hills, please do not race on hills!

    I'm in Delaware. I think we have a hill somewhere in my county, or at least an embankment, not quite sure where though! :) On the flip side, if I ever want to do a 5k out of town that does have hills, I'm screwed because other than my treadmill, there really isn't anyplace to train on hills within realistic driving distance.

    posted over 8 years ago

  • I will not get into my first 5k's as they will not really be of use to you. I was like 14 or 15 years old and skinny as a rail with no such thing as C25K as a training tool. What I will tell you is this. You have been working hard and have come a long way.

    What others did in their first races is of no matter to you. You go out and do what you can to the best of your ability that day. If you run the first 100 yards and walk the rest so be it, though I know you will do better than that. If you want an idea what to expect, look at that 5k workout you did this past weekend.

    A first race is just a starting point. It is something to build off from, to learn from and to help keep you motivated for the next one. You have 2 goals. 1 to start and 2 to finish. How you get there makes no difference. You are going into a level you never have been before. Have fun and when you cross that finish line enjoy it.

    posted over 8 years ago

  • I was not a runner. Ever.

    In grade school, when we would take the Presidential Fitness tests, I'd do reasonably well on everything but the running. Never ran a mile at once, even as a kid or a teenager. I became a racewalker in my late 20s because running and I weren't friends. I felt ungainly and awkward and uncoordinated.

    And then I turned 35 last October. And decided that my goal for 35 was to run a 5k. And if I still hated running, I could go find something else.

    I found a 28-week conservative training program at and started it on March 7, 2010, with the goal of running a 5k (run the whole thing, no walk breaks!) on September 18/19. I trained and trained. I couldn't run fast, but I managed to do the workouts. I run at a 12:00 min/mi pace.

    My first 5k ended up being a 5 min run/1 min walk race in Oshkosh, WI, the last weekend of AirVenture 2010. I came in at 37:03, which astounded me, since I figured I'd be at 40 minutes. I was able to run faster in the running segments because of the walk breaks.

    My second 5k ended up being the Karhu 5k, affiliated with the 13.1 Minneapolis race. I completed that in 36:24, again with the same run/walk intervals.

    Finally, on September 18, I ran the Nickle Dickle Days 5k race in Waconia, MN. I ran the whole thing in 38:17.

    I'm in week 4 of 10k training for a 1/1/11 race now - and I'll probably run/walk that race. :)

    posted over 8 years ago

  • I completed my first (and only, so far) 5K. My time was 37:12. I ran the entire time. I would like to do another one, and my only goal will be to improve my time.

    posted over 8 years ago

  • Well, just for the record :) I worked very hard to pace myself. I set up a timer to prompt me through running for two minutes and walking for 90 seconds, and it was one of the smartest things I did for myself. My hope was to finish in less than 50 minutes, my dream was to finish in less than 45 minutes, and I came in at 43:22 so I'm very proud of myself! AND I'm jonesing to do another one, and can't wait until I'm truly ready to run the entire time!

    posted about 8 years ago

  • Great job, Abuela! I've done 4 so far and finish times range from 40:20 to 37:55. My goal for next year will be 35 minutes, and after that I just want to be consistent. I have ZERO competitive drive -- just enjoy being out there with the crowd and having fun!

    posted about 8 years ago

  • I am definitely a SLOW runner. It took me about 48 minutes to run my first 5K. My next one took around 44 minutes. I still have trouble running that distance, but I think a lot of it is my lack of discipline when it comes to running.

    I think the best thing to do is to keep up your training and be consistent. Don't get discouraged just because you are 'slow'. Just race yourself. I read something the other day about not trying to beat anyone else in the race, just try to beat that nagging voice that is telling you to stop running.


    posted about 8 years ago

  • My first 5k was on July, 24 2010 and I ran/walked it in 37:04. I suppose that isn't bad for my first race, but I wanted more so I set a goal for myself of breaking the 30 minute barrier.

    My second race rolled around on September, 11, 2010 and spurred on by the competition of a co-worker I finished in 32:53. I felt good, and I knew that I didn't have much more to go to hit my goal.

    September, 19, 2010 and I'm running again. Two weekends in a row! This was more to support my family in a half-marathon, but I figured I would try and push myself harder even though it was only a week. I finished in 32:09. Two minutes to go!

    I took a week off, and raced again on October, 2, 2010. It was a cold morning which was very refreshing, and I was running with my phone to keep my pace. Not too fast and not too slow. Upset that I had to walk around 1.7 miles in to the race for a little bit I was exstatic when I rounded the last turn and saw the clock. 29:02 would be my time for this race.

    Now I needed new goals. I set one of an 8:00 mile, and one for a 26:00 5k. I like setting smaller incremental goals so that I have little goals to work towards instead of a big daunting task. Monday I ran my fastest 1 mile ever at 7:45, and with my next 5k coming up on Saturday I am hoping to at least be another minute towards my goal of 26:00 on my 5ks.

    The bottom line is you can do anything with training, faith, and perseverence.

    posted about 8 years ago

  • Hi, I just finished my first 5K. I realize this post is old but thought I would respond in case anyone is still reading it. I started running at the end of last year and train on and off since i have a baby. But, I ran my first 5K in 30:44. I had to work hard to get there though. I started slow running a mile at about an 11 minute/mile pace. Now I'm up to 3.1 at roughly a 9:45 min/mile pace. So yea the work you put in and where you start determines how well you do. But just going out there and running your first 5K is a good enough goal! My goal was to runt the entire time which I did. My reach goal was to run it in under 30 minutes, I didn't accomplish that one..but I will next time! Good luck, hope you're still running!

    posted almost 6 years ago

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