"Slow Jogging" is actually a thing!
Good morning and welcome to our final run of Week 6! Two thirds of the Couch to 5K challenge has been completed and there are just 9 runs left. I can't believe I have just run 25 minutes without stopping, something I could never have done 6 weeks ago. I'm not saying it was easy, but I did it!! 🏃🏿♀️
How are you feeling? Do you feel stronger? Have you got more stamina? Are the runs becoming easier or are they a struggle? What about speed – are you sticking to a steady pace or getting faster?
Now this programme is not a race and it is not about speed, remember it is a marathon not a sprint (metaphorically speaking of course – I have no plans to sign up to any type of marathon in this lifetime).
You may be interested to learn that there is actually a technique known as “Slow Jogging”.
It originated in Japan by Dr Hiroaki Tanaka, a Professor at the Fukuoka University and is known as “niko niko” which literally means “smile”.
The idea behind his technique is when you jog at a slow pace you should be able to keep smiling, not get injured and maintain the ability to hold a conversation without getting out of breath. The exact opposite of the “no pain, no gain” mantra that is sometimes bandied around and even elite athletes are recovering between intense sessions using this idea.
I person’s “niko niko” can be slower or faster than another’s and that is perfectly fine. Young unfit people can have a slower “niko niko” pace than a fitter older person. Your pace, speed and distance should organically increase naturally as your body adapts and becomes fitter and stronger. The easiest way is to listen to your body and if you are out of breath and not able to talk – or sing your favourite song if running alone – then slow down.
According to Dr Tanaka, there is no such thing as too slow and by using this technique he improved his marathon time from 4:11 in his 30s to 2:38:50 in his 50s as well as reversing Type 2 diabetes.
So, if your running speed means that you are being overtaken by a snail, don’t worry, you can proudly declare you are mastering the art of “Slow Jogging” and allowing your body to become stronger and fitter in the process.
If this makes you think the Couch to 5K programme is more achievable, you can download the official C25K app via the NHS website by clicking HERE.
All the information you need together with hints, tips and stretching advice is included in the app and you get to pick a "personal trainer" to keep you motivated along the way.
It is never too late to start as the programme can be completed in your own time and fit in and around your lifestyle; all you need is approximately 30-40 minutes 3 times per week.
For further information, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org