Couch to 5K
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Another glitch - W6R3 - what keeps you going?

Oh dear - I just attempted W6R3 without success - managed about 14 minutes before I got a stitch, slowed down a little and my motivation just slid away from me. I just hate the disappointment afterwards. As lots of people have said W6 is deceptively tricky, but I really didnt have any problems with run 1 or 2 this week. But I'm struggling to keep going with the longer runs, and I think it is rather to do with motivation. I've done all my runs except a couple in the gym on a treadmill, and I do tend to 'clock watch' a little. I did do my W5R3 outside and found that the time seemed to go a little quicker, so don't know if this might help (however running outside where I live generally involves a big hill, which seems a little daunting at the moment). I've also tried the breaking it down into smaller 5 minute runs thing which sometimes helps too.

So I guess I need a little inspiration - what keeps you going when your gremlin is just telling you to stop?

4 Replies

Well, I ditched Laura's podcasts and ran to 25 minutes (or whatever the length of that day's run was) of my own music. It used to work out at about 6 or 7 songs, so I'd tell myself I had 4 more left, 3 more left, etc.


I have completed C25K now but still get the Gremlin, sometimes a few minutes in to a run! I also have the clock watching problem when running on a treadmill. I usually get too hot so take my top off and put it over the timer so I can't see how long I have been running.

I think of the Jillian Michaels quote 'Unless You Puke, Faint or Die, Keep Going!'. I also envisage how much fitter and how much slimmer I'll be if I continue and it keeps me going. Once I hit half way, I pretend I'm on a "downward stretch" and that seems to get me through. I made it half way and I didn't think I could, so I can make the other half of the run too.

I used to get stitches quite a bit initially and found that for me personally, not drinking/eating before a run helped, and doing diaphragmatic breathing until the stitch eased. Breathing has always been my hardest problem. Often my body and legs could keep going but I felt as though I couldn't breathe and I'd start to feel panicky, which just made my breathing worse. I slowed my pace right down whenever I got too out of breath (perhaps obvious!).

I did not think in a million years I'd complete the programme. I'm 26 and wasn't obese or anything to start with but very unfit and rarely did exercise. I started in mid March, repeated a few weeks, and graduated at the beginning of the month.

Don't be hard on yourself if you need to repeat an earlier run... there's nothing wrong with that!

Good luck. Keep going; you can do it :)


I'd hit the streets and leave the treadmill behind. There are all kinds of benefits to running outside - and it certainly prevents clock-watching! I don't even wear a watch when I go out. I know the podcast is a certain length, so I just make sure I have time and stick my iPod in my pocket where I can't check the time.


Thanks everyone for your great advice - I'm finding things a little better now. I've headed outside a bit more and find it much easier in terms of clockwatching, but harder in terms of hills. Much more to distract me generally, and the whole counting the number of songs thing helps too. I'm going to try doing my own playlists though as Laura's music is pretty ropey! However I am starting to find the longer runs a bit easier, which is hopefully down to practice.

Thanks again.


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