Couch to 5K
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Hard learned lessons! Please contribute!

So what have you learned?

Me?

Always get advice on buying running shoes.

Always double knot your laces.

Rub Vaseline on your feet before a long run

Keep your toenails short!!

Wear the right bra ladies!

Tie long hair back or get very narky with it, your choice.

Get a cap if you wear specs to keep the rain off them and sun too!

Girls have a great way to clip the headphones, slip the headphones up under your top then under your bra strap (only just cottoned on to that one!)

Ohh here's one that is a bit taboo, if you get runny tummy you can use anti runny bum tablets, my GP suggested taking an hour before running. Check with your GP but it has helped me no end.

Once you are through the C25K, it's the head you have to battle with, that's the bit that tries to stop you!

Your go!

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For me -

iPod in left pocket, headphone cable _up the back of my running top_ and then into my ears. Annoying dangly cable is then on the back of my neck, not in front.

Charge gadgets the night before a run.

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The most important thing I've learned? That ALL runners need to do quad strengthening exercises to protect their knees. Sadly, learned this too late to avoid the problems I'm having at the moment, but better late than never.

Great list you've put together there Cloudchaser :)

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Tight laces

Running pants that go to your knees to avoid chafing

Stretch always always always

Don't eat less than an hour before your run or it can really make you feel sluggish

A good upbeat running playlist is essential - if you can't dance to it you can't run to it

Focus on your breathing - not only does it take away concentration from sore legs but it greatly increases your blood flow to muscles and how "good" you feel. Focus on deep breathes that go to the diaphragm (push out your stomach not your chest), I've found if my muscles are getting fatigued quickly a few good deep diaphragm breaths really helps me keep going

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I am still at the 'blimey: I can run for 5 minutes!' Stage (week 5 day 1). This is a massive discovery...!

I have also learned that two bras are more comfy and allow me to concentrate solely on my legs and ignore my chest!

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Carry tissues, or am I the only one who finds their nose runs?

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My nose always runs too CG. I only used an I pod to get me through c25k. Now don't use music or anything.

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I wouldn't use an ipod instead of a tissue, sounds a bit expensive

:)

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- The "running style" water bottle shaped like a donut with a hand grip is far, far easier to carry than a normal bottle

- Phone in an armband, wire up through the sleeve and out by the neck. Extra wire dangling under top.

- Get a set of headphones with a loop that goes around the ears to hold them in place during running

- Rubbish rainy weather is good running weather. No excuse!

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Bluetooth headphones are brill

Some knickers are not suitable and it is not usually possible to tell which ones by looking at them beforehand

Places look different before 7am

It is possible to start feeling awful and end feeling good

Perspiration is worse after you finish, so be prepared to melt even though you finished ten minutes ago

Always remember your door key

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I love my wireless headphones!

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The last one is really important;-)

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Yes: I had an unforeseen unsuitable knickers day last week!

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Wireless Bluetooth headphones

I carry chewing gum, it helps me focus on the run and not how tired I think I am.

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Ignore the bit in your heart about skipping a run because you are tired. I agree with Laura. A bad run is better than no run.

Exercising will not loose a massive amount of weight if you are doing it for that purpose only. I wanted to run to loose weight. It might help to tone up but loosing weight is all about food intake.

Running shoes are strange. The most expensive one might not be good for your feet at all (learned from experience, sadly) and the average Adidas one might do wonders. So its all about trial and error.

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You're absolutely right about the weight loss (or lack of same). It can be disheartening to see how few calories are burnt as a result of huffing and puffing for half an hour. But it builds muscles, and they continue to burn a few extra calories hour after hour, day after day.

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1. Leave your cutlass in your cabin.

2. I agree with Amythepirate's one about wearing long shorts to avoid, ahem, mission creep.

3. Don't always set targets - getting out there is the thing/summat's better than nowt/just do what you can.

4. Run through the aches by all means, but never ignore actual pain.

5. Don't think that you know better than the programme - you don't.

5. If you must get a C25K Graduate tattoo, I recommend Johnny Gurkha's in Singapore.

6. Dubloons are NOT the same as, but more generously sized than, pantaloons... sorry officer, my mistake.

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Hahahahahaha!

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I like the "Don't always set targets". I've had some lovely runs that way.

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Mmmmm.....graduation tattoo......that's an idea :)

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The big thing for me: The head leads, the legs and the lungs follow. Once you can 'run' a bit, the only thing that can stop you is negative thought.

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I think this is pretty individual - some of the lessons learned by others wouldn't/don't work for me at all and perhaps mine wouldn't work for others.

1) Running does not actually have to be a fuss and a faff. Some fuss and faff may add to the safety and efficiency and fun, but it is not essential. Do not be put off by other people's fussy and faffy choices. It's your body and your run. If you don't want to ponce around with after run stretches you don't have to (whilst respecting the right of others to ponce around with after run stretches) - just remember that there is an issue and it needs to be addressed in some way or other.

2) Big cotton firm control knickers from M&S have their place in a non-svelte woman's running wardrobe for comforts sake (wobbling tum as uncomfortable as wobbling breasts)

3) You probably cannot own and wear too many buffs when you are a runner. (Well, you can in high Summer except for keeping the sweat out of your eyes.

4) Hands free dog leads are great if you need the dog on a lead

5) Elastic locking laces are cool

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I concur:

1. Rain is good - even if it is just because there are less people around to see you suffer

2. Be prepared to sweat after you have finished your run and long after you have had a nice shower

3. Be prepared to sweat in unmentionable places

4. Earphones with a loop around your ear are ace - and will stop you fiddling around with your earphones

and talking to yourself as if pretending to be a member of the american security services.

5. Chewing gum is good but spitting it out into a bin as you run by is not - or so I am told......

6. Swallowing flies then spitting and hacking to try to get them back up again is seen by some as

socially unacceptable.

7. Jettison anything that will weigh you down near the end of your run before you set off - jacket, keys,

phone.

8. Tissues, yes. There is no way of looking cool as you wipe your nose on your sleeve.

9. Always have a wee before you set off - just in case.......

10. Don't ever forget that gazelles run fast because they are running away from death. You do not need to

be able to run like a gazelle to call yourself a runner - your legs won't thank you for it.

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Great list and great replies - thanks to all. For me, I would add

- armband with iPhone but worn on forearm with phone upside down so I can read it!!

- Wahoo app running alongside Runkeepeer as the display with the heart rate and pace is very large - ideal for anyone whose eyesight is starting to go…..!

- best bra for me is Panache Sports bra - the best support, comfortable and a clip that lets you wear a racer back which is great in high summer

- knickers - i agree with you all!! Only trial and error will do. I have a fab pair of compression shorts from Urban outfitters but can't seem to find them online anymore! Another other recommendations welcome.

Happy running to all

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Great list and great replies - thanks to all. For me, I would add

- armband with iPhone but worn on forearm with phone upside down so I can read it!!

- Wahoo app running alongside Runkeepeer as the display with the heart rate and pace is very large - ideal for anyone whose eyesight is starting to go…..!

- best bra for me is Panache Sports bra - the best support, comfortable and a clip that lets you wear a racer back which is great in high summer

- knickers - i agree with you all!! Only trial and error will do. I have a fab pair of compression shorts from Urban outfitters but can't seem to find them online anymore! Another other recommendations welcome.

Happy running to all

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Great list and great replies - thanks to all. For me, I would add

- armband with iPhone but worn on forearm with phone upside down so I can read it!!

- Wahoo app running alongside Runkeepeer as the display with the heart rate and pace is very large - ideal for anyone whose eyesight is starting to go…..!

- best bra for me is Panache Sports bra - the best support, comfortable and a clip that lets you wear a racer back which is great in high summer

- knickers - i agree with you all!! Only trial and error will do. I have a fab pair of compression shorts from Urban outfitters but can't seem to find them online anymore! Another other recommendations welcome.

Happy running to all

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I have to add

- tripple posting in the forums is a great way to rack up the number of responses ;-)

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Oops....sorry, not sure if that was me and how i managed it!!

Will check to see if this reply posts 3 times!

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Reply as many times as you like! Seems like there are some common themes, support, just do it and snotty noses!

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Use bottle sterilising fluid to clean your doughnut shaped running bottle now and then.

Use a safety pin to pin your keys inside your pocket (nothing like a bit of paranoia to ensure you don't find yourself locked out).

Everything else is covered by other comments.

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Good tip - about bottle, never thought about it but will do now

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That's a genius idea for the keys

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I'd like to add -

- Vary your route from time to time. Even if it just means running a usual loop in the opposite direction. Its only a bit of variety but it keeps things interesting

- You'll need a new drawer or storage space for all this essential new equipment.

- As you get through the C25K you'll start covering a lot more distance- but planning routes is fun!

There are a couple here that are real gems - i'd never thought of wearing my headphone cable inside my clothes! :)

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That's the idea! Help each other out with our bright ideas, or not so bright must avoids!!! I use an app to plan completely new routes as it tells me the milage which is really helpful (it's called Footpath)

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Lots of good points above.

For those with limited routes mainly on pavements make sure you use both sides of the road or run on the same side but in the opposite direction. Reason being that many are not as flat as they look and there is a camber, running the same way all the time could cause muscle/gait imbalance and so problems later on.

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Love the tips. :-)

For me,

always wear a support top

Rub a little talc on inside of arms on a hot day to stop friction burns against vest top seams that rub against my arm

Don't forget socks

a runners belt stops that fave top from riding up

Keep one eye on the dog, to save tripping dramatically over him

Don't be embarrassed when passing other runners when starting out, they've all been there at one point

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I'm not sure about the chewing gum, I would be nervous of inhaling it while I'm taking those enormous gulps of air....

Thinking about getting a tattoo, "proper runner" on my instep or something - comments?

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My two pennies worth:

Skin is waterproof so don't let the rain stop you and

Always do a wee before you set off!

xx

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Make sure your phone or whatever is charged up! Grrr, was going out for W9R2 this morning, but find my phone, where Saint Laura, lives is utterly dead....tomorrow then :-(

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KISS - Keep It Simple, Sometimes

The advice re tissues, knickers, headphones, phones, etc are all sound, but none of the above is necessarily essential.

On my last run I tumbled out of bed, went to pee, splashed my face with water, drank a glass of water, applied moisturiser, put on bra, vest, shorts, socks and shoes, drank another glass of water and stepped outside to go run.

I returned about an hour later from a lovely run. :-)

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