Bridge to 10K

It's my 6th runniversary :)

Today I took myself off the IC (shh! slightly early, but don't tell anyone!) and ran.

I haven't been out for a run for five and a half weeks - yes, you read that correctly - so I was desperate to get out. So desperate, in fact, that I had forgotten how to get out there. I forgot my HRM, I forgot my buff to wipe my horribly sweaty face with, I put long sleeves on (don't ask why, it was warm), I forgot my hair bobble - but do you know what I didn't forget? How to put one foot in front of the other :)

Six years ago I was wearing a huge cotton t-shirt and flappy cotton trackie bottoms. I did have a sports bra and I did have a pair of trainers. I had an old MP3 player onto which I had downloaded our Laura, I stuffed my house key down my bra, and I attempted a casual look as if merely going for a walk. I returned to the house gasping, beetroot-faced, dripping with sweat and incandescent with triumph - because although I couldn't do all the runs of Week 1 Day 1, I was going to have another go. Me. I was deliberately going to go running again.

As many of you will be tired of reading, it took me 50 runs, not the standard 27, to graduate, because I repeated runs and sometimes entire weeks. Since then, I've had days, weeks and sometimes months off through illness or lack of mojo. And I've run again. I've entered races. I've worn neon Lycra. Dammit, I've worn Lycra shorts in public! I've earned bling. I've met so many friends, on here and in person. I've been away on actual running holidays with those friends. They have all supported me through the highs and especially through the lows, and I thank them all :) I have run in 15 other countries. Last week I entered my first foreign race. I book my hotels now by carefully examining their surroundings - does it look as though there are good places to run nearby? I have run in some iconic places.

Today's run was just a gentle potter round my home town. I went back to the road I started on, and I laughed out loud as I covered the same ground.

If you're struggling, if you're doubting, don't worry. You'll get there. You don't have to be fast. You don't have to enter races. You don't have to get better, necessarily. I've slowed down. I can run further, sure. I've learned to enjoy running for its own sake, rather than thinking I constantly have to improve. Because I don't. All I have to do is keep running. There is only me in this race. And I can do this at whatever pace I want to, wherever I want, whenever I want.

I am so, so lucky. Thank you, NHS C25K :)

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Very moved at your post, thank you and good luck.

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Thank you! May you be as lucky as I am in your running journey :)

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This is awesome to read. I hit my running six monthiversary on the 18th, and hope I will be able to say something even half as inspiring in another 5 1/2 years! :)

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You will! In fact, I bet you can already, if you think about it :) Ooh, where are you going for your sixmonthiversary run? Brilliant idea!

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Wonderful post Annie - happy Runniversary! I had no idea you'd been running so so long - so there is hope that in a few years time we might still want to do this thing! :) Congrats on getting back out again too. You are an inspiration and a huge support for so many people here, myself included. I love your idea of a vacation around running - Have to be careful so my family does not disown me in the process :)

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Aw, thanks Decker! Still gutted about Toronto! You are one of my inspirations, and you are doing so fantastically well with your running! I see how it might be tricky about the fam and the vacations, but I'm sure if you put your mind to it you'll manage it one of these days :D

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One day we will run together Annie! Thank you I am just trying to stay in the habit for my own mental health. I’ll have to get creative when planning our next vacation😉

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Yes! I find that I *must* visit head office at some point in the future ;)

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Yep. Have beach - must run 👍🏃‍♂️

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You learn to become more single-minded. It’s your holiday too 😎. I used to make a deal with the kids and OH where we all got our turn to do what we wanted. Not bad for a a day out in Skeg 😁

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Oooh, I've never run in Skeggie! :D

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Happy Runniversary Annie 🍾🎉🎈🎈🍾🎉

I always look forward to reading your posts and this is a goody! You're always funny and gritty and inspiring all at the same time and you're a brilliant role model. Thank you for all of your six years and for sharing your highs and lows and fun and mud and bling 👏👏👏 and everything in between.

And I'm soooo pleased you're off the IC too 🙂 Happy days xxx

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Thank you, IP! We've been through a lot together, I feel - the mud, the bling and everything in between, as you say, but thank you for your very kind words, m'dear!

And yes, it was so good to prise my fat backside out of the clutches of that couch and waddle off for a RUN!!! :D xxx

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The mud, the blood and the beer ! Happy runniversary Murph! 💪

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BEER!!! Will run for beer :D Ta, Wobble!

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What a lovely post, thank you! ... so inspirational.

Best wishes for all your future runs.

Happy running!

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Thank you! May you too have many years of happy running :)

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So so glad you got back to running Annie! Happy runniversary Runner!

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Wheeeee! I'm still fizzing :D Thank you!

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Oh! I had a little cry! (I don't think we ever get tired of hearing the story of someone's start in running)

Hope you are OK after your nostalgia run (don't those rank as some of the best?) Completely understandable why you had to get out there today.

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Thank you! I did think of you today - only because I remembered how I was dressed on my first run and that set me giggling as I thought of your boots :D What was really great was running smoothly and easily (well, relatively :D ) over the ground I stumbled and panted over six years ago. And yes, I'm fine, thank you :)

I'm off to Run Forest on Thursday morning if you fancy coffee and cake?

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I was just feeling a rather urgent need to do that... so yes!

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Fab! I'm booked in for shoes at 10, so do you want to meet at... um... 11...? Or shall I text you when I'm done?

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Oh poo, I have the dawg 🤨. Have fun you two and have a piece o cake for me. Something raspberry rippley lemony creamy

The guy there is hot foot from his triumph at the tunnels race which he ran in his On’s. I dare say his winner’s plaque will be on view. Be sure to congratulate him. It might mean a bigger slice 😎

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Bring the dog with you :D

Yes, I saw his post about it. Good point to ask :D I do like going there. I made the appointment and it ended with 'Coffee - great!'

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OMG. You wouldn’t suggest that if you knew him 😁

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I thought you were talking about Mike for a moment :O

Never mind - next time then!

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😁

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Happy 6th Runniversary Annie!😊...such a lovely post and great to know you are back out running again, after your spell on the ic.

Love what you say about running for its own sake, with no pressure to keep improving, and how it's only ourselves in the race..such a good tip to remember😊.. Three years for me this month and I'm starting to feel that way too...

Wishing you many, many more happy miles, or 20 minute joggettes or whatever you set your mind to!😎xx

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Thank you! Well, it might have taken me six years to get to this point (I'm a slow learner), but perhaps I am actually there now :D I'm sure I'll relapse and be back on here moaning and whinging that I'm too slow, that I don't know why I bother etc. but for today, it was all just perfect :)

Thank you for your good wishes, and may I wish you the same xx

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Inspiring post from an inspiring lady! Wishing you many more happy years of one foot in front of the othering

(Now go back and rest until you are allowed to run 'proper' 😀).

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Ha ha! I'll be good, honest! I am sort of cleared to run. Nearly. Well, I am, slowly and gently. And I'm always slow, so that's okay then! :D

Thank you very, very much :)

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What a lovely post. I must remember I can do what I want with my running. I am due to graduate on my next run and I sometimes feel a bit fed up if I didn’t run as far or as fast but you’re right- I run for me. My main goal is to still be running year after year so thank you for your inspirational words.

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Oooh, graduation run! Exciting! Have a wonderful, fabulous run! And yes, it is always only for you, no one else. If a run doesn't go as planned, so what? You still ran. This is good :)

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Some runs are just pants but some are joyful. Rough smooth sorta thing. In six years Murph has experienced the highs and the lows but is still doing it. Keep running Clare and hopefully we’ll share your runniversary 🙂👍🏃‍♀️

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Oh happy flipping marvellous runniversary Annie. You are inspirational and very very wise.

I took up C25k to be one fit at 50 rather than fat at 50 and then I got bitten by that damn running bug and haven’t looked back.

Thank you for being such a guiding light, on the IC or off it - you make a big difference to all of us.

Keep running for another 6 happy years!

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Thank you! I'm not sure about inspirational or wise :O but thank you anyway :D

It's a funny thing, this running bug. I was never going to get in the car to drive anywhere for a run. What, waste petrol? :D :D :D Oops. Brilliantly well done you for being bitten - may we all have many more years of happy running :)

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Great post!!! I started my running journey 4 years ago - and now , recently kind of starting all over again after 6 months off, I am starting to realise that I am now 4 years older than last time :) There are times in our lives when 4 years make a big difference - compare a newborn to a 4 year old - and times when it doesn't make much difference , compare a 30YO with a 34YO. I believe that as we get older, each year does start to make a difference much the same as when we were children.

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You're absolutely right, Bazza. I'm sitting here aching right now, and that's just after a short break from running. I think I managed a slow 3k today :D The good thing is that we can appreciate how lucky we are to be able to run :)

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Yes. I read a post where his excellent phrase was I GET TO RUN.

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So many people can't, for a variety of reasons.

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Lovely post.

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Thank you!

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Wonderful post! Lovely to read your story and so true, no need to rush or compete, just enjoy it for ourselves. Happy runniversary, here's to many more :)

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Thank you! May we all have many more years of happy running :)

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Great stuff Annie. How life has changed. Glad you went out - even if it was a bit early. x

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Ahem! Only a little bit early, honest! C25K is such a life-changer though :) x

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Just what I was mulling over on my run yesterday. x

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What a lovely post Annie! Has given me a warm fuzz as I'm sat here with my morning cuppa! 😊

Here's to many more running years for us all, you write so well and really sum up the experience from the very start (i still run my c25k route too!) I was in my flappy cotton joggers and a very cheap sports bra when I started and now have whole seperate set draws for sports gear! 4 and a bit years now. And still love the support of the forum so thankyou and glad you are back out there xxx

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Aww, thanks, Ali! A warm fuzz is what's often needed on a cold, wet morning too :D

Hmm, I didn't mention the amount of money I've spent on running, did I? :D For some reason I thought it would be a cheap sport. After all, I had a sports bra and a pair of trainers, and as I said, I was never going to waste any petrol on driving anywhere. I had loads of old t-shirts as well. What else could you possibly need? :O

May we all have many more happy running years, and the support of our friends on the forum always xxx

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Yes I know what you mean. I would never spend such money on shoes or Bras especially pre running days. But now it seems ok (though not to my purse!)

May you have many more happy running days and years !! 😊

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I think some of us may need an extra job to fund our running habit :D

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Hee hee 😁. My running clothes rail collapsed, ripped the rail support blocks down and everything 😎.

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You fibber! :D :D :D

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it did! Scouts honour ! My husband called me in from the garden to lead me by the ear to the offending article. Carnage. 😁

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Tee hee! I bet the hubster was not impressed!

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I attempted to shift the blame, his clothes being far heavier than mine 😎 😁

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Oooops! 😕😆

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Happy Runniversary, and what a lovely post summing up your running career to date. I felt quite moved.

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Thank you! Running has made such a huge difference to my life :)

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Happy Runniversary Annimurph. A truly inspiring post - thank you 😊

I started C25K about a year ago it has made a huge difference physically and mentally. Stuck on the IC at the moment but champing at the bit to get back out there as I miss it so much and I am worried I will lose a lot of the fitness I built up.

Once I get the ok from my GP I’ll be back out there flying the C25K flag 😃👍🏼🏃🏽‍♀️

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Thank you! Sorry you're on the IC :( Don't worry too much about losing fitness as it will soon come back again. The great thing is that you know you can do this, and if you have to start a bit slower or run for shorter distances, that's okay - you soon build back up again very quickly. C25K is such a great programme and has changed so many lives for the better :) One of the things I have learned from my many stints on the IC (and from others' experiences on here) is that if you start again too soon, you're on the IC for longer, ultimately. All the best for the green light!

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Thanks Annie - yes, going back to soon is a big mistake - I learnt the hard way too 😬

It’s really strange - when I drive down the route I used to run I think ‘how the heck did I manage to run that far?!’

I have now got my DH and my sister on C25K and they are starting to feel the benefits too 👍🏼 Can’t wait to join them an some nice runs in the summer!

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Brilliant that you have converted others too :D That will be great in the summer, when you're all out together :)

Yes, I know what you mean about driving running routes. Sometimes it works the other way though - you can drive somewhere and think, 'I could run this!'

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You’ll soon be back in your gym and all will be well 💪👍

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Absolutely amazing to hear xxx

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Thank you! xxx

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Hi Murph. Glad to read you’re back on the road again . I shall cue up Canned Heat in your honour when I run later 😃👍🏃‍♀️

Weather’s crap as per. Iconic places! I am scratching my head to find any I’ve run - then I remembered the crooked pointy thing 💡🙂

So, first run under your belt. Hopefully the weather is about to improve so you might have opportunity to get a couple more in before race day, depending on how you feel after this one of course 😃👍

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Oh, come on! The whole of Derbyshire is iconic! :D

It's Deep Heat I need, not Canned Heat. I bloomin' ache after yesterday! How's that happen then? Not fair! The only cure is to go and do it again, I suppose! Yes, I'm planning to go out for a couple more runs - I'd like to get at least a 5k under my ever-expanding belt before the Longhorn, just to know I can.

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Deep heat ! 😁😁😁👵🏻

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Stinky but effective :D

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Well done Anniemurph the affection you have for running and how it has changed your life shines through in the warmth of all your posts, and none more so than this one.

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Aww, thank you! Apart from my daughters it really is the biggest change in my life. Amazing - as are all the people on this forum!

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Happy Anniversary to our lovely Murph, what a diamond !

Heres to many more , Congratulations ! :-) xxx

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Thanks, Pops, a few comments about rough spring to mind which is how I felt as I tried to crawl out of bed this morning, but nothing wrong that another run won't cure :D

Yes, here's to many more runs for all of us :) xxx

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Well done you and well said !!!!

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Thank you!

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This is a lovely post, thank you for sharing. And massive congrats on 6 years running! Wow! xxx

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Thank you! It's 6 years on and off, mind, but more on, I'm pleased to say :)

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Well, that’s the lot of most runners! 😀

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Such a wonderful post Annie. And don't worry, we won't tell anyone you went back to running a little earlier than your supposed to 😉. Your secret is safe with the thousands on this wonderful forum 😆

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Aaargh! You never know who's on here, do you? :O

Thanks, Sask :) xx

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Your post is full of joy and positivity. I love it! Thank you for sharing. I particularly liked the past about driving to a run. I always thought that about buying running clothes but now shopping is quite exciting 😁

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Thank you! Ha, yes, the shopping aspect :O We only ever really need two sets of everything, if you think about it - one set on and one set in the wash, but it never quite seems to work like that :D

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I love this post! There is so much positivity on this site, but somehow this post really rang true with me.

I'm almost at my one year runniversary (counting from my restart of the rogram after crashing out with a very eary injury on my first practise' attempt).

Today I ran 5K outdoors for the first time since a hip injury at the end of last October. I returned to the scene of W1R1 (despite mud and standing water) and realised I felt so much stronger in mind and in body that this time last year. My outlook is quite different from when I started; what worried me then, what I thought were my needs, goals and driving forces.

It's the determination to keep getting back out there that I find quite astonishing. And everything else just seems to fall into place doesn't it?

Here's to your next six years. Happy running :)

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Congrats on your 5k and your upcoming runniversary! How fab that you feel so much stronger :) This is what running can do for us. I never would have thought that I would go out in cold, wet weather and run through mud and standing water - would you? :D

Thank you, and may you too have many happy years of running.

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6 years of running is pretty amazing! I didn’t realize you’d been in the game quite so long. But it’s really inspirational that you are!

I love your posts - down to earth and honest (muddy and gritty!). I can’t hear the word Carsington without thinking of you.

And running tourism is brilliant - I too call up Google Maps as soon as I get to travel somewhere new. I really love that aspect.

So here’s to many more years of struggles, triumphs and victories!

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Well, if you count the actual years of running it will be less, what with the IC and all, but from the date, yes, it's 6 years :O

Thank you for your kind words. These things do tend to turn into Oscar acceptance speeches but it is true that I would never have got to this point without the support of people on this forum and running friends elsewhere.

May we all have many more years of triumphs and victories - yes, and we'll have to struggle, I know, but we will overcome - even Carsington :D

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Happy Runniversary! I had mine last week but i'm only 1 year in, so exciting to read your post and imagine where I might get to in five more! You brought a little tear and a big smile! 😁😁

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Ooh, happy runniversary for last week! May you have many more of them - you will do fab things, I'm sure :)

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Congratulations on your runversiary!

And thank you for this wonderful post. It's just what I needed as I'm nursing my non-running related back injury - first one since I started c25k. I was starting to wonder how far back I'll have to go but reading this reminds me there's no rush & running will always be there.

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Thank you! No, don't worry. I'm sorry you're injured, but take it easy and take all the time you need to recover. Many of us have rushed back too early, eager to be running again, and have had to take even more time off because we have overdone it :( Your fitness does not dissipate as fast as you think it does, and the roads will always be out there :)

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Thanks! I'm going to take every bit of your good sound advise!

As I said, your post was perfect timing for me as I haven't run for 10 days & was starting to think maybe I ought to do something even though my back and muscles it radiated to are still stiff & achy. But after 5+weeks on the IC you have reassured me that it's more important to run recovered than run still injured!😊

Thanks again!

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You might try some gentle stretches - yoga perhaps, but no, your running fitness will not leave you that quickly :)

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