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Couch to 5K Plan

Want to get into running and tackle the Cheltenham Challenge 5k or 10k? Then try the Couch to 5k training plan devised by Samantha Connell of The Works Sports Therapy, Fitness and Wellbeing.

The training plan is suitable for both men and women and is designed for beginners.

Running is one of those things you either love or hate. Many people don’t like it because they find it very boring. And it’s true it can be boring (trust me I know the feeling mid-way through marathon training). But here are my top 10 REAL reasons why you should start running.

·        DOESN’T COST A PENNY!! (Or at least it doesn’t have to). The great outdoors costs NOTHING! Local running clubs and park runs are also generally FREE.

·        EASILY ACCESSIBLE!! Running can be done at anytime, anywhere. In the morning, you can roll out of bed and run from your front door. On your lunch, you can go for a quick 20-minute run. There is ALWAYS somewhere you can run.

·        NO PRESSURE!! Gyms can be daunting and intimidating. Running can be done on your own, in your own time, at your own pace. There is no pressure to compete or look like you know what you’re doing.

·        RUNNING SOCIAL!! Whether it’s a Sunday run or event, running club members get together and do it together. This is great for someone new to running. Plus, you can make new running buddies who feel your pain!

·        WILL I GET SKINNY?  NO. Well not unless you want to. Losing weight consists of burning more calories than you consume. If you want to start running for weight loss you should also look at your diet to see the pounds drop off.

·        VARIETY!! Short interval running (HIIT) is known to burn more calories and can be done easily. (Fast run for 60 seconds, walk for 75 seconds and repeat 12 times).

·        ACHIEVE THE IMPOSSIBLE!! Running 5km, 10km, half marathons and marathons may seem impossible. Having an event to aim for can give you motivation to start running. Once you get your first medal, you will want more!

·        GET OUTDOORS!! I am very much an outdoors person especially in the summer, any excuse to tan. But like many others I spend majority of my day stuck indoors. Running can be a good reason to get outdoors.

·        FEEL GOOD FACTOR!! After your first run you will feel better. Endorphins are released when we exercise which makes us feel good. You will also soon be covering distances you never thought you would, which will make you feel AMAZING!

·        EAT WHAT YOU LIKE!! Long distance running burns serious calories. Covering some distance first, you can practically eat what you like (in moderation). That slice of chocolate cake will taste much better when you know you’ve worked for it!

So if you fancy giving it a go, click here to Download the Couch to 5K Plan


Samantha Connell – Graduate Sports Therapist and Personal Trainer

Graduating from my sports therapy degree in 2015 I have since launched my own sports injury clinic and personal training business in the Gloucestershire area. Working with professional athletes has motivated me to create a business that is focused on optimising performance in sport and aiding injury prevention.  My ambition is for my business is to encourage people of all abilities to take an active interest in health and exercise


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