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Week 4 run 3... bad run :(

Hi all

I have had my first bad run and am gutted.

I was getting on well with week 4 and really thrilled to be managing 5 minute runs, when the tough 60 seconds of week 1 are not yet even a distant memory...!

So I came home from work tonight, excited to do my final week 4 run as then I get to move onto week 5.

But it was so hard. I so nearly gave up and even thought I might be physically ill.

What a wuss eh!!

It doesn't make sense, and I can't really pinpoint the reason, only that I had been at work for 12 hours (my other week 4 runs were early mornings), had eaten a bowl of cereal before running (really felt I needed some food to keep me going but maybe a bad idea), started the first run going uphill (generally run on flat), and hadnt done as good a warmup as usual.

The hardest part of the session was the first 3 mins + 5 mins - the second lot being marginally less bad!!

Whatever the reasons, I really can't see how I could possibly do week 5 now, even run 1, let alone run 3!!!! So maybe I should just re-do week 4, despite my initial enthusiasm to move on a stage.

A bit of a confidence knock really... hopefully it's just a blip and not the beginning of the end of my running!!

K xx

23 Replies

If you completed the run then you can move on

I think you answered your own question there as to the reason that it was so hard, eg

uphill at the beginning

inadequate warm up

not enough fuel on board


You can sort all those out quite easily so don't be downhearted. We all have off days. Just have a good night's sleep and a rest day tomorrow and hopefully your next run will go much better.


It sounds like a combination of things but don't be discouraged as we all have been there :-)

Next time will be just fine, you'll see - and then you'll feel great!

Happy running!


Just a bad run I had one tonight as well. You'll be fine on week 5. Everyone has bad runs just acknowledge it and move on. You'll be grinning after the next one


I had one last week that was terrible. We all have one now and again. Press on and enjoy the next "good run". It will happen:)


My first bad run was week 7 , for no apparent reason, just take heart from all the comments on here that it's not unusual , it happens !

Just look forward to the next run ' good luck' , I'm sure you will be fine


As the saying goes: There's no such thing as a bad run because any run is better than not running at all. Having said that, you've identified all the reasons why this run was harder than you expected. Top of the list would be the fact that you'd been at work for 12 hours before you ran!! Don't be too hard on yourself. If you got through the run, regardless of how it felt, then you're ready for week 5. Don't think about r3, just concentrate on doing the first 2runs and let r3 take care of itself (and it will, believe me) Good luck :)


This happened to me recently too. I usually run first thing before any food - I found I actually felt really sick running later in the day when my stomach had something in it, even though not that recent.

One bad run is just one bad run ... don't worry about it :0)

1 like

I echo the comments above. You have noted some of the reasons but hey! You did it.

There are some days that your body just isnt up for it. You have reasons, sometimes it happens for no apparant reason.

Always think where you have come from and dont look too far forward.

Week 5 will take care of itself and you will get through it. Good luck


I think you have answered the questions yourself. If you haven't eaten might be better to take some sports drink rather than solid food. Worth experimenting but go for next week.


I'm gutted I haven't been able to start week 1 yet due to blisters. Don't get d out an your doing great. Like you say you seem to know what the problem is so just do week 4 again for a couple of days then move on to week 5. Good luck.


Hi Karenoc - I had a bad run last week and they can really knock our confidence but all we need is one good run to bounce back. The point is that even inspite of adverse factors you completed Wk4 and that is a success story. Wk.5 can look daunting especially after a 'bad run' but I know you can do it because I did! In fact wk5.1 is a minute less running than wk 4 and you really will start to find the walks between runs becoming an irritation soon. So go for it - you can always go back a run but the adventure is in going forward :)


I can't do any intense cardio exercise at all within 2 hours of eating without feeling sick!


Any one of the factors you identified could be enough on thier own to make a "bad" run (remembering there is no such thing!). The fact that you still managed to complete the run despite ALL off them is really something to be proud of! Fantastic determination - I'm not sure I would have been so determined. I am a morning runner and definitely need to be running on "empty", so well done you.

You completed week 4, you are definitely ready to move on. Forget wk4r3 (or remember it only in as much as you know you shouldn't be looking to eat before a run!). Enjoy how far you have come - and let us know how week 5 goes.


Put it behind you and move on. The important thing is you did it and you have identified several things you could improve on so you should be fine. Good luck.


Thank you all!

You are really sweet - and very sensible!!!!

I will keep going, at least one more run (week 5) to see if I am able.

Runon - you have it exactly right - the adventure is in going forward. And that's probably why a bad run feels so bad, because suddenly going forward doesn't look as likely.

Anyway I am probably going to wait until Saturday to start week 5, so that I can do a morning run, with no other distractions such as work. And on an empty stomach!

Ill let you know how it goes! Thanks for all the support xx


Absolutely, move on to the next week. Morning run, empty stomach (drink some water 20 mins or so before you go) and you will be fine. I did exactly the same as you did a few weeks ago- the work thing, the food thing....felt blooming awful and, unlike you, walked some of it!!! So now I am back to mornings and have just done my scond 30 minute run :). That will be you soon. Onwards xxxx


How long after you had the cereal did you run? I normally have to eat a minimum one hour prior to get the benefit and to stop my body diverting all the blood and energy to my digestive system. I made a stupid mistake on Monday of forgetting to eat something early (usually porridge) and thinking a quick slice of cake as I went out the door would do the trick. The run was awful and on finishing I had to walk the km back to the car very slowly as I wanted to be sick. Won't do that again. My husband, is quite different and always loves to eat right before running (and did as a kid when he played rugby). So you need to experiment as to what's right for you, fuel-wise.


We all have bad runs now and again and as you say, you had been working long hours, etc., etc. Don't let it put you off or stop you. Just do that run again, then move on xxx


I had cereal about 30 mins before running. Who knew that could be such a bad thing. But the more I think about it (and thanks to Runkeeper app's records!!), my best runs have been in the morning. I just find it harder to do those during the week due to work etc - weekend is fine. So I guess it's about experimenting. You guys are great, I'm actually getting excited again which is a miracle after yesterday! Roll on Saturday and week 5, run 1 ;) xx


I was so worried after finishing week 4 as I struggled with the last run that I was dreading week 5 as it seemed yet another upgrade in the amount of time spent running. As my husband keeps reminding me, so much of running is in the mind. I chickened out and decided to spend another week at week 4 to build up my fitness - I am glad that I did. Do not beat yourself up if you don't do it according to the plan - the only person you are doing this for is yourself, no-one else so you have to do what suits you best. It suits me to go at my own pace and build up my fitness to a point that I feel comfortable as I know that if I find it hard I will stop. x


Yes, you definitely can! You finished it despite being tired and stuffed before you set off. Next time don't eat immediately before you go though...! You have already identified the problems with this session, but It was not a 'bad' run: you weren't lolling on the sofa eating junk food, you were out running, and though it was challenging, you did what was required of you....and it has helped build your fitness for the next step.

In my (very) limited experience (I am on week 7) some runs definitely seem more difficult than others, but your next one will be better: move onwards and upwards! Good luck :-)


You have clearly worked out what was the matter so that shows how well you understand yourself. If you got it done move on ahead. From week 5 on its a lot of head stuff. I've just started week5 and I was shaking in my boots but I just got on with it and I did it!!. the advice the guys and gals give you here will be excellent. For me, be gentle with yourself and prepare thoroughly before each run. Its not the end..... you're breaking through the glass ceiling of fears and doubts that we all have!!!

Keep going !!


Bring on Week 5! The only qualification for moving on is *completing* the three runs of the previous week - doesn't matter how they felt. Today I didn't get out of the door. That's a bad run. To be fair, it wasn't entirely my fault, but I won't bore you all with the excuses. Also, I think if you're a morning runner, running later doesn't really work, and if you're used to running before food, your body will complain if you do it after. I run in the morning, with just an actimel before I go, and breakfast to look forward to when I come back. It works for me - except when, like today, something stops me getting out at the proper time and then the gremlins set in and I don't go at all. Ah well - tomorrow will soon be here...


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