Fit For Life – Phase 2

Phase 2 of an octant should take at least 12 hours to complete, it can be a continuation of Phase 1 or something new. For my Phase 2 I tried something new, the running which I have previously written so much about!

Phase 2: Complete Couch 2 5k (NHS running podcast series)

I took up running in July 2013. I decided to start exercising to help relieve stress. However I began to notice my level of fitness changing, and I began losing weight too. These were extra benefits, but not my reason for starting this.

My first couple of runs did not go very well. I barely ran up the road and back. I decided to investigate online training plans to hep new runners. I quickly discovered the NHS ‘Couch 2 5k’ plan. This is a series of podcasts that can help anyone starting running for 30 minutes (approximately 5k) within 3 months.


Immediately this series worked for me. The first week consisted of a 5 minute warm up walk, then 1 minute run, 1.5 minute walk (in total 8 times) then a 5 minute warm down walk. This was a lot more manageable. The podcasts advice to take a day’s rest in between runs and to complete the podcast 3 times a week.

Completing week 2 I decided to buy some specialist running trainers, which were noticeably bouncier.

I started writing a blog about some of my runs, and this helped motivate me to continue. I have attached some of these blogs as further evidence of my progress through the programme.

A significant moment in the training was on week 5. The final run of this week was a 20 minute run without any breaks for walking. I was very proud the first time I completed this. I can remember thinking in the final 2 minutes that I wouldn’t make it, but just told myself to keep putting one foot in front of the other.

It was another 3 weeks before I hit 30 minutes, but this was also a big achievement for me when I finally completed the programme.

I will continue my training, using the three additional NHS ‘5k plus’ podcasts as help but also using my own music playlists.


Another challenge I have set myself alongside running is to attend an outdoor gym once a week to work on my arm strength. For these sessions I run 10 minutes to the park. Work out for 10 minutes in the outdoor gym, and then run another 10 minutes home. (Plus a 5 minute warm up and warm down walk).

I think the ‘Couch 2 5k’ programme is exceptional, and always recommend it to anyone who mentions they wish to start running.



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