Couch to 5K



Back in October I decided to start C25k - I had already lost a few pounds but was determined to find an exercise I enjoy to aid this!

I started couch to 5k, and REALLY struggled with week 1. 60 seconds of running was such a long time!

Well, here I am, having just finished week 7. I am a bit worried about my progress though - at the end of week 5 I got a horrible cold which left me bed bound with vertigo. I had to take 2 weeks off as I didn't feel strong enough to walk far let alone run.

Then I felt better, and away we went! Completed week 6 without a hitch and felt very proud of myself.

Then, within a week, both a work colleague and a family member died. I was left devastated, and was knackered so decided to take another week off. I then managed week 7 and felt on top of the world - there was no way in anyone's earth a few months ago I was going to run 25 minutes, let alone 3 times in a week!

However, now I'm not well again with a horrible cough and a really tight feeling chest. I've been told by a colleague (a nurse) that if I'm ill from the neck up it's fine to run, but neck down not to.

I'm SO desperate to finish C25k though! I really want to achieve my goal and it's frustrating to have had all these setbacks. I've suffered with back pain, shin splints and knee pain in the past and it feels like the loss of 22lb so far has helped me get over that but I'm worried I'll lose motivation.

What does anyone do to keep them going when they have to take downtime whilst they're not well? Is there any light exercise you could recommend in the meantime to keep fitness up?

Thankyou guys xxx

6 Replies

When I can't run I keep myself motivated by reading the posts on here. I just end up feeling so jealous of all the people out there running I can't wait to get back. You must look after yourself as well. Graduation is going to happen when your body is ready for it. It sounds like your immune system has taken a bit of a knock over the last few months. Treat yourself with some tlc and take it steady. Hope you feel well soon.


Wow you're doing well, and with all those setbacks as well! I haven't been on the injury couch for long, but when my knees were really bad at the beginning, I used to do an alternative form of exercise which didn't hurt them - for me it was my stepper in the kitchen and some cheery music. Lots of people seem to do well with pilates or yoga, as it's not aerobic and non impact. Just take care and only run when you are well enough. You'll get there - we all get there in the end!!


You're doing so well with the running, but sometimes life just intervenes! You are building a life long skill, so although time out is frustrating at the mo, it's nothing in the grand scheme of things.

You could always do the strength and flex podcasts with Laura whilst waiting to get back out there.

Hope you get better soon.


oh bless you, you have had a real hard time lately. Give yourself time to heal both physically and mentally. One day you will say, right i am back in the game and you will do it and feel so much better for it. Good luck and let us know how you get on.


Take a bit of time out and let yourself recover. You;ve done really well to keep going and with gaps. You can always pick it up again or drop back a week if you need to.

If you want to do a bit of gentle exercise then wrap up warm and go for a little walk but best to stay warm & hydrated


If you need to convalesce, convalesce... I can't see that doing some other form of exercise of similar intensity would be any more OK. That said, getting out for a walk is worth doing if you feel up to it - for all sorts of reasons.

Quite a few of us have surprised ourselves when we've had to have a break for whatever reason, including being unwell, and have done *better* on the next outing. So cosset yourself and don't waste any energy worrying.


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