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

(40 Posts)
Dumbledoresgirl Tue 09-Oct-12 11:17:52

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?

dotty2 Tue 09-Oct-12 11:29:31

You could try the NHS podcasts for Couch to 5 k. There are threads in both the weightloss and sports and exercise section, but the weightloss one (which I'm on) is maybe a bit gentler. Lots of us were very overweight and/or unfit (or both!) when we started and found it tough. The NHS podcasts give you tips as you go. if you are finding you are on the verge of collapse, I suspect you are going too fast on the run sections - the lovely Laura who narrates the NHS podcasts is always cautioning 'remember it's just a gentle jog'.

Dumbledoresgirl Tue 09-Oct-12 12:37:50

Wow that's really helpful, thank you dotty. I have immediately downloaded week one and will use it tomorrow. It will really help with the timings as when I am jogging, I find it hard to see the second hand on my watch. Thanks grin

dotty2 Tue 09-Oct-12 14:34:48

Hope you get on OK with it - I found it really helpful and motivating and wouldn't have managed to get up to 5k without listening to them. Some people with better musical taste than me complain about the music, though!

Babieseverywhere Tue 09-Oct-12 16:08:05

I totally agree with the running slower bit. When you start running a section, make sure you slow down to a comfortable slow run...speed will come later.

Don't forget you can repeat any week of C25K if you don't feel ready to move on.

I am not sure when you see improvement, as I found all of C25K hard to do at the time. I struggled so much with running even for one minute it was so hard. Yet I staggered though all nine weeks of it and still run three times a week a year later.

C25K is a great running program smile

ZZMum Thu 11-Oct-12 15:45:19

Can I do this with you - am the worst at this in world - am just starting again for the 6th time ... am easily the least unfit person in world and am constantly trying to lose weight and yet constantly eating - be good to have someone to "run" with.. as I also find it so hard...

Dumbledoresgirl Fri 12-Oct-12 11:06:54

Oo ZZMum, it would be my pleasure to have someone to compare notes with. smile

I have just done my second run from week 1, but this is the second week I have attempted week 1 because I am useless at commiting to doing it often enough.

I used the NHS podcast today and it was much better using that than trying to keep time on my watch. I also took the hint from others here and jogged a bit more slowly. The jogging was fine, but there is no way I can "keep up the brisk pace" when walking! I just sort of kept walking, and didn't really pay much attention to how fast it was. I hope that is ok.

So where are you up to ZZMum?

ItsAllGoingToBeFine Fri 12-Oct-12 11:11:00

Have a look at Micoach. Theres a website and an app. They do all sorts of training plans, including walking ones.

The app just plays on your phone, it uses your own play lists and tells you when to speed up/slow down and records speedvv and distance etc.

The only problem is you need flash to use the website sad

CoteDAzur Fri 12-Oct-12 11:14:47

That plan looks a bit harsh. I would recommend BUPA's 5K training program (easy to find on the Internet).

If you are still finding it hard, don't forget that:
(1) You can always repeat a day rather than immediately pass onto the next one
(2) It's supposed to be moderately hard. That is how you build up your strength and resistance

You will definitely start seeing an improvement within two weeks and will be shedding weight if you eat well and in reasonable amounts during this time.

CoteDAzur Fri 12-Oct-12 11:17:08

Also, if you have an iPod or iPhone, get the free RunKeeper app which is by far the best out there. You can program your runs in this app so that it tells you (over the earphones) when to start running and when to start walking, maps your run on a map (via GPS), tells you how far you have run, how long it took, average speed etc. It's brilliant!

ZZMum Fri 12-Oct-12 12:38:25

I am on Week 2 - Day 3 or at least I will be if I ever get ass off sofa to do it - I am using the C25K which I do find OK when i do it as I stick on some bad tunes from the 80s (am very old) and I find I can get distracted for 10-30 seconds at a time and then I come to and realise I am trying to run, am too fat, too old and then it all starts to fall apart.. I am going on a work trip 5 weeks tomorrow and want to lose 10lb so my plan is to use everything that MN has to offer
- Running
- BIWI low bcarb diet
- XLS Fat Binders
- Gastric Band hypnotherarpy

Also going to try to do the 100 day skin care stuff as well as want to look great and also actually wear some nice clothes rather than looking bloated in usual marquee style clothing..

Sounds like we both need to make some more effort on our commitment to doing the programme - when are you out next - I am going tomorrow!

Dumbledoresgirl Fri 12-Oct-12 13:42:22

It's good that you have the work trip coming up to give you a timescale and incentive. I don't have anything like that, just my own disgust at my recent increase in size and a vague desire to hang on to my youthful body. I am not too fat, just more so than I was a year ago, and horrified at how quickly the weight went on. I am hopelessly unfit though as exercise has never been my thing. I am probably close in age to you too if you are listening to 80s stuff. smile

I probably won't go out over the weekend (I have not yet told my dh what I am doing as I want to build up a bit of fitness to surprise him with first!) but I am going to start on week 2 on Monday as I found today's run easier than previous times so I think I am ready for the next stage.

Good luck tomorrow!

MegTheCat Fri 12-Oct-12 14:02:05

Hi - I've just started the C25k running plan- just done the 2nd run of week 1. I tried it initially without the podcast - it is much easier with, don't know why. Maybe because she keeps reminding you not to run too fast. I try and run / walk in time with the music on the podcast which seems to fit with gentle for running / brisk for walking.
I am v. unfit and can easily knock myself out for a day or two if I overdo exercise (seriously, 2 days in bed after trying British Military Fitness a couple of years ago)
I decided I don't have to do the whole 30 mins every time - the first time with the podcast I got tired and decided to stop halfway. I just thought well, it's more than I have been doing. The next time I was raring to go and easily did it all.
I'll do 3 proper week 1 runs before I move on though - and if I find the next run hard I'll probably keep going with week 1 for longer.
I'm doing daily (well most days) exercises as well - (from Dr Briffa's "Escape the Diet Trap" - just 12 mins of things like situps, pressups, running on the spot, squats. I can feel myself getting stronger and given how I can make myself ill if I overdo it, little and often is great for me.
I'm also low-carbing (see BIWI's low carb thread - lbd wk 2) which gives me more energy and makes me feel like doing exercise
Would be good to compare notes on the C25K with someone else who's doing it

bohemimum Fri 12-Oct-12 20:36:47

Dumbledoresgirl..let me share my story in hope of inspiring you... 18 months ago I had never run in my life. I was fatter, wobblier and less confident. i couldn't run for the bus without needing to pee. But I started the couch to 5k and stuck with it. Some days were bloody hard, i lacked confidence and felt like some fat nearly-40 something. Now - I run 4 times a week, fit into my jeans, wobble less and am tarining for a half marathon.. Running has changed my life and it can do yours too. just. don't.give. up. xx

ZZMum Mon 15-Oct-12 10:22:58

So how did you get on? I er failed to go - went swimming instead so today I AM GOING RUNNING << creating hypnotic state to ensure success >>

Dumbledoresgirl Mon 15-Oct-12 11:29:54

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

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!

Dumbledoresgirl Mon 15-Oct-12 16:48:51

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.

Dumbledoresgirl Mon 15-Oct-12 16:49:38

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

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!

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.

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.

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.

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?

Dumbledoresgirl Wed 17-Oct-12 11:13:10

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?

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