This week I'm on Week 8 and tomorrow morning I will complete Week 8 Run 3. Week 8 Run 1 was my best run so far - the first time I felt like a real runner at the end of it! However the last few runs have also coincided with my recent downloading of Runkeeper onto my phone and therefore being able to compare myself against other people. And I'm really wondering whether ignorance wasn't bliss! I suppose after reading lots of the posts on here talking about distances run I was curious as to how I was doing. I first used Runkeeper on Run 3 of Week 7. I didn't realise you could turn off the awful american robot voice broadcasting my progress every 5 minutes, and I found the intrusion really distracting and demoralising (plus it paused Laura each time so that I ran for slightly longer than the 25 minutes - not a problem though).
On Week 8 Run 1 I turned off the voice and relaxed into the run, and I really enjoyed it and felt strong, even speeding up at the end, as Laura suggested. But at the end of running the first thing I felt compelled to do was check the distance I had run. And then of course what I wanted to do was compare myself. I compared myself against my twitter friend, who is my only other friend on Runkeeper. I allowed myself some leeway since she has been running a lot longer than me, at least a year longer, if not two, I think (she was about 5 minutes faster over the same distance). Then I compared myself against others on here, and found I was probably average for this stage - which is fine. I could accept this.
However yesterday we went to visit family, which was lovely.. we had a really relaxed day enjoying the sun, chatting and quaffing wine with my husband's step sisters who we haven't seen for ages. I mentioned I'd started running and was able to run for 28 minutes non-stop and that I'd nearly finished the C25K programme. Pride comes before a fall, I suppose! They hadn't heard of it, but one of my step sisters-in-law mentioned that she'd got into running earlier in the year, just off her own back, and had managed just over 5k (3.something miles in 30 minutes). She remembered because she'd been really proud of herself, and had kept the record on her phone on MapMyRun, from back in February. She read it out to us. So I said 'Wow, that's brilliant, I can only do 3.6km at the moment' "Oh, but I thought you said you'd nearly graduated? How many weeks have you got to go?" she asked. 'Just over one week left' I answered. So she laughed and wondered how I was going to make up another 1.4km in 2 minutes. I tried, weakly, to explain about the C25K being about working up stamina to be able to run for 30 minutes non-stop rather than run 5k, how I was proud of myself since at the beginning I couldn't even run for one minute etc etc etc... But basically after that I just felt completely stupid and useless (it doesn't take too much to make me feel like this, it has to be said). Oh, and by the way, it's nothing to do with age, since I am exactly one week older than her.
So now I'm feeling exceedinly deflated, even though I keep telling myself it doesn't matter, we're all different, I should take things at my own pace, I'll get there, it's not how fast you go, it's stamina that counts, this time eight-ish weeks ago I couldn't even run for one minute (oh, and since I started the programme my mother has died and I've had her funeral to organise blah blah...). I've tried reading all the posts about the 5K/30 minute controversy and tried to take in all the encourageing points people have made on the forum, but really all I have focused on are the posts from people who have been able to run 5k in 30 minutes in Week 6, or the people who can already run 10k a few weeks after graduating etc..
so, well.. basically I'm feeling really shit about myself... (PLUS I've not really noticed any weight-loss/change in body shape, as others on here seem to have done)
and I suppose I just wanted somewhere to sound off about it.. so thanks for listening...