Advice needed re taking up running. Or a virtual running buddy? Help somehow please!

(40 Posts)

I have recently realised that things are on the slide. I have put on some weight and reducing my intake of food is not doing anything to help. I also suffer from a periodic condition presumably connected to the menopause/peri-menopause which means that I am often extremely fatigued and suffer headaches that go on for days, all of which means I have cut down on day to day activity.

I will not let this be the start down the slippery slope to permanent weight gain and total lack of fitness!

So, I recently started following the Couch to 5K running plan

But....oh boy! is it hard! I am hopelessly unfit and really struggle to follow the week one regime after about 10 minutes. I have to rest after the exercise for nearly as long as the exercise itself took!

Have I taken on too much too quickly?

Is there a gentler plan to start on?

How long do I have to continue before I start to see a tiny bit of improvement? I daren't move on to week 2 as I know I won't be able to do it and I don't want to collapse in the street blush

And finally, is anyone else doing this and would like some mutual support sharing?

SarahWithAFringeOnTop Tue 08-Jan-13 19:59:23

Hi everyone, I've only just found this thread... are you all still running? How is it going? I have struggled my way through to W8 but (a) feel a bit alone (b) know I'm very slow and still unfit and (c) in the event I actually manage to finish W9, don't know what to do next and would appreciate some ideas about maintaining it. And any other thoughts... confused

MegTheCat Tue 27-Nov-12 21:19:01

Hi Dumbledoresgirl - I wouldn't be running if I had to do it in the dark or pouring rain. I I have Wednesdays off so can fit in a run then and one at the weekend. I must have been lucky with the weather - it has been quite sunny, and not too cold. I am 5 minutes (brisk warm-up) walk from the park and it has been lovely to get out and see the autumn leaves etc etc. The last run I did was 3 x 5min runs with walking in between.

Hi Mirai and Meg and anyone else reading/running. Meg, you are doing really well. Week 5! I dread to think what that entails....

No, I didn't get back into it after half term. Many reasons: there has been a lot of stuff going on which has meant I haven't had the privacy to get out, the weather has been awful (I don't mind if it is cold or damp, but pouring with rain and howling winds? hmm) but mainly I suppose I simply lacked the will-power.

So I am back to no exercise, but I am looking at buying some proper sportswear and I won't delete the podcasts from my mp3 so I haven't totally abandoned the whole idea. I suspect the weather won't be favourable in January (thinking that in January I will feel newly determined) but maybe start again in February?

I am seriously impressed that people run at this time of year.

MegTheCat Sat 24-Nov-12 19:31:03

Hi mirai - thanks for kind enquiries! I did first run of week 5 today. Loving it.
Dumbledore - did you get back into it again after your break?

mirai Tue 13-Nov-12 11:48:41

How are you doing Dumbledore and Meg?

MegTheCat Mon 29-Oct-12 22:24:53

On second thoughts, if you're anything like me the red face and sweatiness when you get back from a run would be a bit of a giveaway.

MegTheCat Fri 26-Oct-12 20:39:05

I reckon you'll get back into it ok after 12 days. First session could be a little tough but you won't be back to square one.
You could always just say you are popping out, or going for a walk (on mine I'm still doing more walking than running) - or would it look a bit suspicious that you were going out in sports gear and trainers?

Great news that you have started week 2! Keep going!

My children are old enough to leave too - aged 16, 14, 12 and 9 - so my problem is not leaving them. It is the fact that I have not told any of them, or dh, that I am doing this running. blush I want to surprise them, well, dh really, a few weeks down the line when I can actually run a fair bit. It did occur to me that, like your dcs, mine would probably not notice I am gone (I did manage one run last week on a day when dh was working from home!) but, if they did notice, they would tease endlessly. It is not so much that I can't take the teasing, more that I want to shock them with the brilliance of my running at a later date! grin I am also away staying with family and friends for a few days next week so, even without keeping things secret, I am not going to be able to run for a few days.

Will I regret this? If I don't run for 12 days, will I be able to pick up with week 3? Oh, I'm not sure now. sad

MegTheCat Wed 24-Oct-12 16:12:55

Hi Dumbledoresgirl! You were quite right. I started week 2 today and it was fine. It is weird how much easier everything gets with practice. It feels like it is going so much quicker as well (poss because I am now not spending an hour searching for mp3 player, keys, trainers, trying to find some sports gear to wear etc etc beforehand). I am lucky my dcs are old enough to leave (12 and 16). I don't think they even noticed I'd gone. How old are yours?
The 90 seconds was no problem at all - but the jump to 3 mins sounds a bit daunting...

Hi Megthecat! Glad to know I am not on my own. I did week 1 for 2 weeks. I don't care what they say, I think it is quite a hefty start and I just felt I needed to do it again. It then became a lot easier the 2nd week.

That said, I didn't think I could do week 2 but managed mostly ok, and then was horrified that week 3 involves running in 3 minute bursts, having only run for 90 seconds prior to that, but I was able to do it! So maybe you think you aren't ready for the next week when really you are.

My programme is about to get messed up. My children have an extra long half term - starting tomorrow - so I am not sure I am going to be able to run for the 12 days. I am going to have to though, aren't I, otherwise I will be back to square one.

Anyway, good luck with it. I liked what your colleague said about being able to eat anything. I look forward to that!

MegTheCat Mon 22-Oct-12 13:52:58

I went out this morning and Saturday - still on wk 1 of the C25k but it is getting easier. Not sure whether to do one more wk 1 run or go on to week 2 next time. It's half term for us and I am off work all week so I plan to get on to week 2 - it is on my to do list. (must download the next podcast)
I saw an old work colleague on Friday who has taken up running since we worked together (about 6 years ago?). She looked great - had obv lost a lot of weight and has in fact lost 3 stone. I realised afterwards I put on 3 stone in the same period...(have lost one again recently, thankfully).
Anyway seeing her and talking about running inspired me to keep on keeping on. She said she just eats what she likes these days and works off the calories with running.

Anyone still running? I've just started week 3.

ididyeah Wed 17-Oct-12 20:40:52

just looked at the cool running link - don't think I'm even at week one stage yet! looks like a great plan though

ididyeah Wed 17-Oct-12 20:39:43

Hi all - can I join in? so glad to find this thread. I'm 42 and started 'running' last week after donkey's years - I am well unfit plus about a stone overweight, and somehow when i run it feels like I'm all knees and elbows, but for some reason I don't care and just really fancy having a go again!

last week it was literally run for about 40 seconds and then walk for ages (didn't bother timing at this point) until feel human again and repeat. but today it was six lots of one minute with two minutes in between; it started chucking it down towards the end but I still kept going, it actually felt pretty good!

I'm really pleased to find out it's not just me. reading what you have all written gives me loads more hope! I have a mild muscle problem (comes and goes) so am not sure how far i can get with the plan, but am hoping to try and use visualisation to do the best I can (and beat my own mental block and ignore the uber runners of essex too) xx

ZZMum Wed 17-Oct-12 13:22:50

hey - am also 47 and never done regular exercise either ... so we are at same level - I am going to go out tonight for another run - still at gym - not ready (ever) to face the uber runners of manchester... from the other times I have done this I know it does get easier - I have been running for all of 10 minutess on previous attempts and then get a mental block and stop (as golemmings know as she was with me on my last attempt and she is perfect example of how grheat this stuff is if you stick at it!! well done goL - waves back shamefully!)

I have to do it this time - am bored of being unfit and also have an the 50 and fat fear .. also had it at 40 but somehow youth made me arrogant but lets face it no one thinks 50 is young!!

so keep at it - we will get there!

Welcome all. smile It is good to read that other people did this, struggled at first, but then found it easier or were inspired to keep running. I can't say I am at that stage yet. I feel elated the days I wake up and realise I don't 'have' to go running so I definitely haven't got the running bug yet. But I went again today, so that is twice so far this week.

I found today much harder than on Monday even though I make sure to run really slowly. In fact, 2 of the 90 second runs I had to stop early - somewhere past the 60 sec mark - but they were both up slight hills so maybe that is not too bad? I still can't 'walk briskly' in between runs either - more like just put one foot in front of the other. Is this no good? Does anyone think I should do this week again? I know they say the plan is for anyone, but I wonder if it is really geared towards younger people with an inherent fitness level in them. I am 47 and have never done regular exercise. I feel I am starting at a very low level.

ZZMum, I am a little bit jealous of the treadmill as one of the things that I have to overcome each time I go out is the thought that people are going to see me. Today, I saw 2 people I know. I went a different route to avoid one blush and the other I tried to just breezily run past with a cheery hello. But I would prefer to be on a treadmill, and see nobody. OTOH, if you want to avoid fit Mancunian uber runners, is the gym really the best place?!

Anyway, I hope you have managed to get out since I last checked in. Anyone else been out recently?

Shodan Mon 15-Oct-12 23:40:59

I'm still trying to finish the C25K after starting it way back in ... um... May, I think. I was doing quite well until the jump (can't remember which week it was) to 20 minutes running, which I failed badly at. I have to admit, it put me off and that, plus the summer holidays stopped me running at all for two months.

However. Come the start of the autumn term I was back out there (even in the rain- I sweat such a lot it was rather nice to have rain drenching me instead of sweat!), but only twice a week. The last three weeks, only once a week due to RL 'stuff'. And the most astonishing thing is, today I ran over 2 km! Not much to serious runners, I know- but you should have seen how badly I struggled with Week 1, run 1 grin.

I bet you'll find the same thing, OP. And plus, I don't know if it's just me, but all the runners round here (and there are a lot!) seem so nice and encouraging, even if it's just a grin and a nod as they whizz by.

I need to keep going as I have a four hour grading coming up fro which I need endurance AND the abiliity to do short sharp bursts of high energy stuff ( so need to start interspersing steady running with bursts of sprinting) so I'll keep checking in with you as well, if that's ok?

Piffpaffpoff Mon 15-Oct-12 23:31:01

If you are in Scotland, look up and see if you have a JogScotland group, they are volunteer led running groups that cater for absolute beginners and are great

Keep on with the couch to 5k though, I found that really good and you will suddenly find it gets easier. I started off doing that and I ran a 10k race yesterday! Ok, so I came 10th last out of 450, and it took me 1hr and 20 mins but I did it and I ran for 80 minutes non stop - neither of these things seemed remotely possible as I puffed my way through weeks 1-4 of c25k.

notsohot Mon 15-Oct-12 23:22:25

Wow, lemmings, well done. Was it great eastern? I watched the finish to support sil and bil. Saw some fantastic inspiring runners go by.

golemmings Mon 15-Oct-12 19:53:16

Good luck ladies. <waves to zz>.
I started last year and with help and support from some lovely folk on mn I not only finished c25k in time for a 5k in march, I kept going and ran a half marathon last weekend.

ZZMum Mon 15-Oct-12 18:59:35

hey - I am so bad I would not risk being seen in public running - I live in south manchester in an area overrun with uber runners - damn perfect ones out all the time bounding lightly and without trauma sweat or grunting - ie nothing like me - I am working myself on a treadmill and once I can run 5K in less than 40 mins I shall emerge slug like from my shell.. currently scheduled to be in time for summer next year!

my best time is in the morning - really enjoy (as much as is possible) getting up, quick drink of water and then off to the gym - once done, I really enjoy quick steam room pamper session and a good shower and use of nice toiletries - am trying to make it more of a treat when I go to make sure I do ... today was OK - got Week 2 knocked off so now onto heady heights or should that be lengths of week 3..

Going again tomorrow morning - want to try to work out every day between now and business trip - will see how i get on running and if it feels too much, will swim ... slowly

So when are you planning next run - need to get it booked!

That should say "the issue hasn't arisen for me yet.

Willing you on ZZMum.

I don't know about where you are, but having been quite sunny here this morning, it has turned really wet and dreary now. Do you run even if it is raining? The issue has arisen for me yet, and I keep telling myself it won't make any difference to me, but I am kidding myself! wink

I'm like you, I can't run for ages after a meal. It makes me feel sick. And I like to have time for a shower afterwards, so at the moment, my preferred time is about 10:30 - 11 in the morning. Not so many dog walkers then either.

ZZMum Mon 15-Oct-12 13:35:09

well done DG!!! I am impressed and almost inspired to go out - I shall do in a couple of hours - just need to digest my very worthy egg salad lunch - cant run within 2 hours/weeks/years of a meal as I just find it another weight dragging me down and my ass is quite frankly big enough without needing any help...

have spent weekend loading up itouch with more crap 80s tunes - on music alone, I have enough to run for about 5 days - when actually all I need is teh introduction to Vienna and am fit to collapse! I shall report back later with a knackered but smug post of achievement!

Urgh, just got back from running day 1 of week 2. God that is harder than week 1, that's for sure! (Probably that is a rather obvious statement for me to make, but don't expect sense from me for another hour or so, I am done in!

ZZMum, swimming is a worthy replacement to running, I am sure. But if you want some motivation: get your lazy ass off the sofa (couch?!) and get going! You could be back in time for lunch if you go now... smile

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