1st time exercising at age 55! Am I mad??

Started yoga a year ago and walk a lot. But no aerobic fitness at all. Decided to start this to prove to myself I can do it. Day one was relatively easy and I felt marvelous when finished . Rest day - had aches in legs and ankles but no real problem. Just done day 2 and back of thighs and butt really ached, I found it a struggle. Not breathing wise, but muscle-wise. Am thinking of investing in proper running trainers.

Determined not to give up but thinking I must be mad! Encouragement please from any other ex-smoker ex-partygirls who have succeeded at this!


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24 Replies

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  • I started this caper at 56, and many others have done in who are in there 70's, so don't think you are too old at 55, you certainly aren't

    Just go slowly. Slowly is the way you'll complete the job. Just hold that thought. As long as you remember that you'll be fine. It's 9 short weeks, and it will fly by, so enjoy yourself. It's not a race so just chill out and have fun

    As a former fatty and couch potato I can vouch for this programme. Never quit!

  • Thanks for the encouragement. I have told myself that if I have to do the week one plan four times instead of three, that isn't failure. Am determined to be able to do a 5k parkrun in March.

  • You'll find the programme is progressive so don't worry about not completing weeks. It's not a race and you do it at your own pace but don't worry about moving on to the next week. You might surprise yourself. Going slowly is the key to it.

  • Success it taking as long as you need to finish the program - 9 weeks or 9 months. It's not really about running 5k, it's about a lifestyle change.

    Keep your runs slow and you'll do just fine. I used to smoke years ago, it's nice to have the lungs working as they should.

    And keep posting. We like hearing your progress and we're here for support.

  • I started C25k when I was 57. I have just turned 60 and am now fitter than ever. At your age you will really love the new found gains in health and mental well-being and will wonder why it took you so long to really appreciate your body for its truly amazing abilities.

    There are stretches on the NHS Livewell pages that are well worth doing and have been my post run exercise regime for two and a half years.

    Good luck. You will not regret doing this and will discover a new side to yourself.

  • Thanks for the encouragement. I am not going to give up, and hope to become a fitness addict!

  • No, you are not mad. You will probably be looking back in a year's time saying that it's the best decision you ever made. You're ONLY 55. Go for it, enjoy it, and keep us posted.

  • I was never a party girl and stopped smoking 25 years ago but I am an overweight 52 year old who loved sitting down a lot! I graduated from C25K 13 weeks ago so it can be done! I had only started with some walking and then a bit of cycling but only for fun before starting C25K. I had always admired runners but never thought I would be able to break into a trot. Even the 1 and 3 minute runs were challenging and took everything I had. Plus I went from a treadmill to running outside so it took a lot of confidence to show myself to the world!

    As I went through the weeks, it seemed to take total commitment and so on rest days, I really did rest. Usually this was in bed with the electric blanket on! I felt my legs needed it if I was to make it to week 9! Every week I thought "this is too hard" but I just slowed down and plodded through it.

    The programme does work, listen to Laura, rest when you should and after you graduate you have a sound foundation to be able to run. I have run 10k twice now and every week do a minimum of 5k X 3 so fitness wise, you will not believe what u can do. Keep going, we are all with u ๐Ÿ˜€ Julie

  • Thanks, that's really encouraging Julie. I will keep you posted!

  • You can do this - thousands of us have now! I started at 59 and am now 61 and still loving it.

    Slow and steady and you will get there. I think a pair of good running shoes ( and possibly a good sports bra) are a sensible investment.

    Good luck - keep us posted!

  • You are not mad at all, this could quite possibly be one of the best things you will do for your health and well-being. The positive changes that come from it are fantastic. You can still rock a party too you know, but I found that I became shall we say a little more moderate once I started running. Just stick with the programme, take things really steady and check back on here for inspiration and support, and let us know how you get on. :-)

  • Yes, you are bonkers - we're all nuts here, so you're in the right place! I'm 55, started C25K 18 months ago, and love my running! You will to, just stick to the programme, Laura will see you alright! Well done on starting the programme, you won't regret I promise. Don't forget to keep posting your progress, best of luck xx

  • Like others, I'm 60 and did c25k this year and haven't looked back, and wish I did it years ago, but it's never too late, I also gave up smoking 25 years ago.

    It'll be tough at times, but you can do it, just take it nice and slow, you only have to get to run constantly for 30mins 3 times a week for good benefit's to fitness, then you can go on from there once you've graduated. You'll probably want to go to 5k and Parkruns and maybe beyond in time.. Good luck..

  • There are loads of folk on here far older than you, it's normal for muscles to complain, defianately invest in proper shoes and follow the programme to the letter..... Good luck and a huge well done for taking the step....

  • Best thing I ever did was starting this in April, I will be celebrating a year without a cigarette on January 12th, I am 56 and slightly overweight still, but not as overweight as I would be without the ciggies. The best thing for me is everytime I think I need a fag (I don't) is to lace up my trainers and run it off. I have found running de stresses me so well. My blood pressure is spot on, so all in all this is the best decision I could have made. By the way I love running now. (well except from the wind blowing and the rain lashing down)

  • Well done on the fags - I'm two and a half years and only really miss it when I'm out having a drink. I feel loads healthier - wish I'd done it years ago.

  • Hi there, I'm 49 so we're around the same age. Never been a smoker though and I'm really glad I started the c25k after putting it off for ages. Hard to believe I'm running for 28 mins at a time now and finding it comfortable. I am very slow but proud of my achievement. You will be too. Keep at it and maybe think about having a long soak in the bath instead of a shower to relax your muscles when you get home from your run. I'd suggest leaving 2 days to recover between your runs until you no longer have soreness the day after. If a week takes longer than 7 days, it doesn't matter.

  • Wow, what a fantastic bunch of supporters you are! I already feel proud to have started. Need a new pair of trainers now I am serious. Anybody know if you can add music to the app to fill in the silences between Laura's instructions?

  • Ucandothis, if you are using the app on a phone play your music and Laura will talk over it.

  • I just download the podcasts from here to my mp3 and it's music right the way through with occasional breaks when Laura tells you something. Couldn't do it without the music personally.

  • Yay ! Welcome to the board and this fantastic programme ! You wont regret it , thats for sure !

    This forum is the best, its packed to the rafters with lovely, supportive people of all ages and abilities. Never be scared of asking any questions, we are all here to help.

    I used to smoke like a chimney, drink like a fish and swear like a trooper and now I dont do any of it ( well, maybe the last one, but only when needs be ! ) :-)

    Good luck, get Laura in your earholes and lets go ! :-)

    You can do this ! :-) xxx

  • Not mad at all, well no more than all the rest of us! I started at 61, not having run since school (17). I'm 65 now and still running. I don't think I'll ever stop. This programme really works and it will change your life. Go for it!!

  • OMG. Wk1 d3. Could barely move! I thought I would have a problem with stamina/breathing but it is muscles that are complaining. Ached across top of thighs and ankles yesterday but this morning was really bad. Couldn't manage first minute but struggled through the rest, although felt like I was barely lifting feet off the ground! Left ankle and right inner/outer thigh and all across my bum ache like mad!

    Tell me it will get better! I am going to rest tomorrow, then go to yoga on Monday then do week 1 again starting Tuesday. Also going to invest in proper shoes. Keep telling myself that nothing worth doing is easy!

  • It will definitely get better. You are using muscles that are not used to being used in this way. Every time you rest them after your run, they are healing and getting stronger. That's why I think 2 rest days could be better for you than 1. Then the muscles have properly healed before you call on them again.

    w1-3 the biggest struggle for me was the ache in my calves, strangely mostly the left one. W8 now and that is GONE. Hold onto that thought and listen to your body, take your time. It is not just about 9 weeks but being healthy for a very long time to come.

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