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Couch to 5K
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i am struggling

I am determined to finish this program but am finding it very hard now that I have gone onto the long runs. I feel like I am constantly being overtaken. (so pleased for everyone else, don't get me wrong). A few years ago I started learning to run and had a terrible time. I got a hr monitor and found my resting pulse was 130bpm. After investigation they found I was hyperthyroid and to cut a long story short, had radiation treatment and lost 1/2 my thyroid. I am now hypothyroid. They think my metabolism was running high for a few years at least 5 that we know of.

As soon as my hr goes up my body seems to want to quit. The interval training walking and running were great now I am stuck on the distances. I checked my heart rate and it seems to go into redline (100% energy expenditure) around the 10 min mark which is just when my energy levels seemed to drop. Most of my running is in anaerobic.(over 90%)

So it seems to be that my body/brain is fighting running for distances for now. I don't know how to run slower.

I can swim 30 len in 20 min and cross train for 30 min no problem so I have a fitness level. It just running and me are having hiccups and I refuse to give up.

Any help would be appreciated.

15 Replies

This sounds a lot like me. I also do most of my running in the anaerobic zone. And towards the end of the program (starting week 8) I felt like my heart was going to explode after every run, literally.

The only way I got through the last runs was to trust my HRM blindly. I figured out what my HR was supposed to be to keep me in the aerobic zone and I stuck to it like glue. It meant that I ran ridiculously slowly but it also meant that I could complete all the runs without feeling like I needed an ambulance waiting for me when I got back home.

I also felt like I couldn't run any slower but, going by the HRM, I slowed down enough to keep my heart at the right rate (would not have been able to do this with my HRM as I wouldn't have believed I could go that slowly and still technically be running)

Since graduating I don't follow this as strictly (and spend most of my time running in the anaerobic zone as a result), but through practice I have learned to slow down (and bring my heart rate down) when it all feels like it's getting a bit too much.

Like you, I can cross train for ages and do hill walking on steep inclines without breaking a sweat, but my heart has yet to figure out this running lark. Keep at it, it will get better! Rely on your HRM and you will manage fine.


Thanks for the advice It's nice to to feel alone on this as well. I will try to slow down some more so it dosent to into the redline at all. I keep telling myself speed can come later but I need to be able to finish the c25k before I work on the specifics so to speak.



I agree with Be11adonna, try running with a heart rate monitor.

I have an under active thyroid too (caused by hashimotos) and when I used to run in the gym at my 'normal' pace I would literally be knocking on 100% of my max heart rate.

Since I started C25K I started running outside and just taking the run/speed as I found most comfortable, which is sometimes more and sometimes less than what I used to on the treadmill; I haven't used my HRM on my outdoor runs but you've inspired me to check on my next run... anyway as most of the advice goes on here is take each run slowly, I only just did W5R3 (the magical 20 mins) and found that running super slow made me finish, with some left in me to speed up for the last two minutes.

If you haven't already, I'd recommend heading over to the Thyroid UK HU forum, I'm sure there are some people over there who would be able to help too :o)


Thanks for that I will have a look. Well done on wk5 run3. That was my nemesis for a long time. Even Slower but steady here I come.


You guys are a real inspiration. RESPECT and the very best of luck.


Ahhhh thank you.


you know, I think you are amazing...what determination and focus....you are a winner, and never forget that, however hard it may seem...X


Thank you so much. I will be a panther


After reading your post, there is no excuses I am will to accept from others as to why they can't go running .....thanks a lot for the enspiration keep on running stay focus.


Thank you, I think I have been well and truly bitten by the running bug.


You're doing great! It's not a race to graduate and if you have to take your time, it doesn't matter. Far better to build up your stamina and technique than make yourself really ill or injure yourself in the process. You'll get there when you're ready x


I am going to go slow and steady. Like you say better to finish than have to bow out early. Thank you.


Start slow and finish strong ....


Aw bless you Rfc...you are overcoming real odds to get there ...makes me feel a wuss when I complain over nothing more than getting my trainers damp .

Hats off to you for your achievements on the x-trainer and in the pool !

Never fear, you WILL get there with your running,your body will adjust....take it at your own pace is all...it's not a race to graduation.Every time you get out there and run it counts

Keep on running :)


Thanks carolecal. I find it strange how I forget that only a few short weeks ago if someone had said I would be running over 10 min I would of laughed at them. So It must count. Thanks for the reminder.


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