Couch to 5K
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Week 6, run 3 - aargh!

I was SO looking forward to this. Just got back from it and although I completed the run I found this very tough. Legs felt good, lungs felt good but I got the most horrendous stitch about 8 minutes in and had to really push myself to the finish - felt terrible. I have had it on and off throughout the plan but not as bad as today. I slowed it down, I have tried having some water, not having water, slowing right down, holding my fingers into my side... :-( when does this stop or do runners just put up with it? I am starting to dread my next run now - pah!

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I get stitch and I try to look for reasons for it and sometimes I can find a reasons but other times I can't so it's just one of those things. I find if I am running up or down a hill and my middle is jiggling about that can cause it, or if I have too little food inside me. Also, going too quick can bring it on.

I stop completely and slowly bend down and touch my toes, come back up and stretch both arms right into the air above my head and stretch upwards (feet on the ground), then I lean over on the side of the stitch. You can actually keep running for a bit with both arms above your head, reaching for the sky. Looks a bit peculiar but hey who cares.

You'll be fine! It's not an injury or anything so don't worry. Tension doesn't help! Make sure your meal is well digested before your run - anything from an hour to 90 minutes.

Good luck and happy running. Let us know how it goes


The only time I have had a stitch is when running too soon after a meal these days I prefer to run before breakfast so completely empty. Just have a glass of water and go. Hope you find what works for you!


I still get a stitch when running at times. Generally taking Lauras advice of slowing down, pushing out your stomach while breathing ìn and relaxing on the out breath has always worked. Having some water 30 mins or so before the run also tended to help.

Oh, and well done for completing :)

Keep up the good work


Thanks. I always run "dry" first thing in the morning so I am empty. Found it harder to do lunchtime runs, plus I like it when it is a bit dark and misty because I can blend in and not get heckled! :-/ The stitch is always pretty low down on the right hand side a couple of inches above hip bone. Oh lordy, I just don't want it to come back. I honestly thought as I ran down there is no way I can keep this up for 25 minutes.. so relieved I made it. Although just uploaded to Stava and although I did a longer walk at the beginning (wanted to get across the main road and didn't want to stop during the 25) my time was 44 mins altogether, covered 3.5 miles.

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