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Castle Park Couch to 5k: Week 4 of eight and time is of the essence





Indie news editor Sinead Corr has signed up for a Couch to 5k fitness programme in Bishop's Stortford...

Week four of the Castle Park Couch to 5k training was a time to reflect on the ravages of time.

Each week, we have to repeat the last session twice as "homework" before tackling a tougher workout, and when we meet by the war memorial in Castle Gardens each Wednesday morning we compare notes on how we've coped.

Frieda Wilson had her purple shaved off last year to raise money for building work at Bishop's Stortford Methodist Church, where she is senior steward. Picture: Vikki Lince
Frieda Wilson had her purple shaved off last year to raise money for building work at Bishop's Stortford Methodist Church, where she is senior steward. Picture: Vikki Lince

We lost one of our number. Frieda Wilson, a senior steward at Bishop's Stortford Methodist Church, is hoping to compete in the Strictly Stortford charity dance competition on Sunday June 19, and with a niggling knee injury she decided to run risked ruining her rumba.

Since the course began on January 12, we've bonded well as a group and Frieda will be missed.

Part of our coach Laurence Foote's training strategy is to encourage us to chat as we run to ensure we keep to a comfortable pace. If we're too puffed to ponder the meaning of life with each other, we're trying too hard, and it's been great getting to know the eight other beginners.

Castle Park Couch to 5k coach Laurence Foote, of FooteSteps Coaching
Castle Park Couch to 5k coach Laurence Foote, of FooteSteps Coaching

The conversation for today's class centres on the aches and pains of ageing and the benefits of trying to stay fit and healthy – with a good dose of banter about how racking up the years means adding bad habits makes little difference to overall life expectancy. Not that any of us are seriously looking forward to a class A drug habit in our 70s.

As ever, Laurence, of FooteSteps Coaching, has wise words of advice on staying injury-free during the eight-week course. Each session begins with a five-minute warm-up and ends with stretches to cool down to ensure our muscles and joints cope.

We completed our reps – a three minute run with 90 seconds' walking recovery and then two five-minute runs with 2.5 minutes recovery – on the Tarmac path around the Waytemore Castle mound and realised we're halfway towards our goal of tackling the Castle Park parkrun on Saturday, March 12.

* The Castle Park Couch to 5k started on January 12 and will finish with a group parkrun at Castle Park on Saturday, March 12.

The Castle Park couch to 5k group with Indie news editor Sinead Corr far right, next to Frieda Wilson, who has withdrawn to focus on the Strictly Stortford contest in June
The Castle Park couch to 5k group with Indie news editor Sinead Corr far right, next to Frieda Wilson, who has withdrawn to focus on the Strictly Stortford contest in June


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