Couch to 5K
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Restart number 1,000


I'm restarting this AGAIN. And was just wondering if anyone had any tips for actually following through? I have never been able to get past week 5 outside, I'm wondering if I have asthma so I'm going to do this inside. I feel like I may just start at week 1 even though it'll probably be too easy, because nothing else has worked. I do it correctly and even if I get to running for 25 minutes at a slow pace, I find it way too hard, it's unnaturally uncomfortable and never gets any better/easier.

But I need to lose weight desperately so I'm going to start again. One though |I had was starting on Week 1 but upping the speed?

Thanks for your help

13 Replies

just start, do what Laura says, grit your teeth and push...I have asthma too and I know its hard but you can do it..... if you really want to???


If you find a run hard, just give it a day or two and try it again. Going back to week one is demoralising - you should think of it as a run-by-run process.

I've repeated a run. I just needed that little extra time to make sure I felt confident. I'm sure many people here have been in the same position.

I think the whole 'starting again' thing is very negative and un necessary. If you are struggling to get past week 5, perhaps go back to week 4 do a run or two from there and move forward again.

Going back from w5 to the start would mean that you will loose a lot of the progress you have made.

I don't know what benefit upping the speed will do. The program is about building stamina more than speed. I would think you would be better to continue with w5 at a very slow jog than going to w1 and upping the speed. Why not spend a couple of weeks on w5 - dial back the pace massively and slowly increase it over the next couple of weeks?

I don't think many people feel it gets 'easier', I get the feeling that I am more able and that things become do-able.

If you think you have asthma you need to go to your GP before continuing - particularly if you are overweight.

I don't know if this is correct - because I don't know you but....

Could it be you keep restarting the program because you have low levels of willpower to continue and you find it easier to give up and start again? I was there with a gym program many years ago. If you do have low will power - post a report here before and after every run. The community is super supportive and got me through a time where I considered giving up.

You can do this... you have proven that to get to week 5. It won't be easy, but you CAN do it.

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Thanks for your replies. Much appreciated.

In terms of willpower, I used to have a lot, I don't know what's happened. The fear of God would be put in me if I missed a gym session and I was a slim size 12. I'm now a 14-16 and I hate the way I look, I'm miserable but I definitely have an issue with maintaining.

For example the week before last I started taking protein and doing weights again and cardio and a nicer gym I joined and I loved it. Then I had one night out in the week and it threw me off and that's it, the whole week I'm eating crap and gaining weight. Now tomorrow I'm determined to start again and I do enjoy it, but I find it hard to maintain any consistency.

I could do with losing a stone, and then another half slowly just for vanity reasons. But I just can't seem to find any routine that suits me. If I go out one night, I seem to then go out every night afterwards, and if I eat too much one day I just think oh well might as well carry on.

I don't know what this personality trait is? But I'm sure it's the reason nothing is working.

I am not lazy in the slightest and I worry constantly about what I'm achieving in life and what people think of me etc etc but ironically it's not making the best of me and I've lost whatever it was I had before that made me care more about my appearance.

Really confuses me!



You don't 'need' protein and I would question doing whether doing weights would be right for you if you want to loose weights. You need to get your heart rate into the fat burn or cardio zones so I would suggest sticking to cardio equipment until the weight starts to shift.

From what you are saying I think it is your attitude that needs to change to get results. You need to get your eating and drinking under control - have you thought about weight watchers or using myfitnesspal to log your calorie intake v. Exercise. It is hard - I sat at Christmas dinner eating a low fat and callorie jelly whilst my family ate Christmas pudding and ice cream. I had a couple of beers but then stuck to coke zero - everyone else kept drinking. It was hard, but I have managed to loose a good couple of stone.

If you are struggling with c25k, you could just go for long walks instead, but I have really enjoy the feeling of progression on c25k.

Whatever you choose to do you need to stick with it or it won't work. The thing is, from my experience (and everyone else's on here) I know you can do it. It is up to you whether or not you want to stick with it.

I do think it would be beneficial for you to post updates before every run on here. People are so encouraging - it would give you the boost you might need.


If you have only recently got as far as week 5 then I would go back to week 3 say rather than all the way back, but the way I read your story I imagine it's been quite a while since you ran . If so then starting again at week one is fine but don't think too far ahead. Just anticipate the next run and think 'well I'll do that one'. A bit like AA (I imagine!) in that you just think about getting through today rather than next week. If one run is particularly hard, you can repeat it, but don't give up! And personally I would say forget about speed. Just run at whatever pace is comfortable for you. It's not about how fast you go, or even about completing 5K, just about steadily increasing your fitness. And at the same time enjoying the scenery, the fresh air and the changing weather (me- I would forget the treadmill, but whatever works for you).


Running on its own won't deliver weight loss. you need to combine it with a sensible eating plan (note, I'm avoiding use of the 'D' word ). Now I know this because after years of trying, it has only been the two together that delivered and then maintained weight loss. Could it be that your frustration with the C25K plan has been that it didn't deliver the result you seek on its own?

Try the programme again and begin some form of eating plan and if you stick to both, from personal experience, I know it will work.

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Can you enter a race which will give you a focus and a target for the training ? If you know you're committed to a 5k or 10k later in the year you'll have to finish the programme to be able to do them.

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For different reasons, I have a book that I write in each night. I only write down the good stuff, including my runs, how long since I had tobacco/alcohol. I find it motivating. Just thought I'd mention in case that sort of thing might help you too. Good luck, and well done for trying again. Sometimes things take several attempts before they work out. Approach this attempt with a positive attitude, ie I CAN do it this time, this is the one! It will make all the difference. And keep posting on the forum. There's so much help available on here.

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If you seriously think you have asthma then please consult your GP. If you are just out of breath, then slow down, certainly don't speed up. While many people do complete C25k on a dreadmill, running outside is never boring and the air is fresh, not sweat filled or air conditioned and provides the feeling of being really alive.

As others say, keep posting here and we will support you run by run all the way to graduation. Good luck, you can do it.


Yep you need never be alone. There is a fab support system here. All your C25kers are listed week by week and have their own thread (to the right of the screen) All there are on your same week so you can compare notes

Running outside is so liberating. You're free and easy just to run/walk with Laura chirruping in your earole occasionally. Go really slowly and you'll be just fine. Combine the run/walks with healthy eating and you'll transform your body in no time. You just have to ditch the junk food. Get rid of it from the house and don't buy it then it can't hang around haunting you. You'll save pounds too and then you can spend that money on running shoes

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I wonder if you're going about it wrong? Instead of seeing the programme as a way to lose weight maybe see it as a challenge in and of itself. Throw in a healthy eating plan where you eat what's healthy and what you like but less of it, maybe?

I started a similar programme to c25k just to test myself, I had never been able to run and at the tender age of 49 I wanted to see if I could. I was absolutely determined to complete the prog although I had no idea what I would do when I finished. Losing weight would have been a great by product but I never lost weight and I am bigger than you. I also found it the hardest, least enjoyable thing I had ever done, every step was hellish. But I did it coz I wanted to prove I could and that kept me motivated.

When I went through a period of feeling totally demotivated some time after I completed the prog I just forced myself to do it, put my trainers on, got out the door and ran, sometimes just for 5 or 10 mins, and eventually the motivation returned.

You are beating yourself up a lot, no-one else will be as judgemental about you as you seem to be about yourself. Be a bit kinder to yourself maybe. We all fall off our own wagons at times be they fags or booze or chocolate ( my own vice) and yes, exercise but it doesn't change anything if you just berate yourself, it just makes you feel worse.

Like someone else said, take each day as a new day, don't think everything begins on Monday, everything begins today. And the day after that. And the day after that.

I've never learned to love running but I keep on keeping on coz I'm always glad to finish! And I love being in the open air.

Good luck.


hi, I have granduated last year and did not run for one reason or another for a long time. I suggest you do start from week one, but it is too easy move along to another week but only move by one week, let your body get used to it again. I never knew I could Jog, and pls note I write jog and not run, sometimes I jog slower than others but I finish it, sometimes I go even so slow I am hardly moving but I jog. Speed comes later, It is only a matter of disipline. I seem to find that if I jog to lively music I jog better. It is worth a try. Remember one thing, you are doing this for you. and you only. Enjoy it you can do it.


Thanks for all your replies. Much appreciated. I can see it's a very supportive environment here.

I think I just have quite an extreme personality so I'm going to set myself a plan over a period of 6 weeks and not think about losing weight but just maintain a 3 day a week minimum attendance in the gym!

I would love to just be able to go for a run for 30 minutes and not even think about it, that's my first goal.

Then I'd like to build on my fitness after this!

First run this evening - and going to start at week 3 instead of week 5. As it has been a long time since I've run!

Thanks again.


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