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Getting healthier. Helping others. Win-win.

I’m Jeff and I can’t run. At least this what I’ve been telling myself the last few years. These half-century-old knees just can’t take the pounding anymore and I’m carrying around too much extra me these days.

Just do it? Nope. The couch is a happy place, thank you.

There’s quite a few of us in this boat. Deep down, we know we need to get in better shape, but, for whatever reason, just don’t do it.

If you’re like me, you may need some extra motivation to get started in the right direction and I may have found just the thing.

GraceWorks Turkey Trot 5K Run/Walk is a fantastic event every Thanksgiving morning which includes thousands of runners of all ages. It’s become a local tradition as hundreds of families start their Thanksgiving running the Trot together. It’s GraceWorks’ biggest fundraiser of the year and goes a long way toward helping a lot of our neighbors in need in Williamson County.

Running in the Turkey Trot and raising money for a great organization like GraceWorks present the extra motivation I was looking for to get off the couch.

Getting healthier. Helping others. Win-win.

To make this happen, I’m going to try something similar to the Couch-to-5K/Beginning Running plan. It was created by Cool Running and eases the beginner into a 5K training program gradually with the goal of getting you off the couch and into a 5K in just two months. Each session takes 20 or 30 minutes, three times a week. That happens to align with the recommendations by numerous studies for optimum fitness. You can see the plan at the website.

For example, here are the workouts for Week One:

“Brisk five-minute warmup walk. Then alternate 60 seconds of jogging and 90 seconds of walking for a total of 20 minutes.”

And it builds from there. Jog times increase each week until it eventually fills the entire 30-minute workout. You’re ready at the end of the nine-week period for a 5K as 30 minutes is the average time it takes to run one.

To make it easier for me, I plan on using an iPhone app and there are a few choices available including the official Couch-to-5K app by Active Network for $2.99. I read mixed reviews on this app so will start out by trying a free one called C25K by Zen Labs. Their app compresses the nine-week Cool Running C25K program into eight but the option is there to repeat workouts as needed.

Now, onto the reasons I’m telling the world I’m about to start the C2TT5K (Couch to Turkey Trot 5K) program.

If you are like me and want to get in better shape, and your doctor gives you the okay, I invite you to join me in this journey.

I plan on starting this program the week of September 27. Remember, you can do your 30-minute workout any three days during the week you want. I’ll post an article at the end of each week sharing my experiences all the way to the Turkey Trot 5K on November 26. We hope all who take part in this also share how it’s going for them by posting comments about their workouts.

We’d also love for you to participate in the Turkey Trot 5K Run/Walk. It happens at 8 a.m. Thanksgiving morning at D1 Sports Training at Cool Springs. Get the details at

The cool thing about this event is there are runners/walkers of all ages and sizes. The only thing everyone has in common is that they have a blast and the entry fees go towards helping those who need it in Williamson County.

If so inclined, join the C2TT5K Team on FirstGiving and help raise money for GraceWorks. Our page is here. You may also donate directly to the team or anyone on the team at that same link.

And if all that wasn’t motivation enough, I think there’s a rule which states those who have participated in a 5K on Thanksgiving get to eat a second slice of pie totally guilt-free, but don’t hold me to that.

Any questions? Leave a comment below or email Think about it and I hope you join Team C2TT5K.

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