What is stopping me?

I joined this programme about 3 years ago and have kept up my running since. I regularly take part in 10 races and run 3 times a week. so why have I not run since Christmas Eve? Its not the weather as the excuse, I just can't seem to be motivated. I feel sluggish yet have been eating healthily apart from Christmas day and boxing day.

Its almost like I am afraid to start again and I can't explain why I feel like this ?

Any sensible replies appreciated.



Featured Content

Join the NHS Couch to 5K community

Couch to 5K has been designed to get you off the couch and running 5km in just 9 weeks

Start today!

Featured by HealthUnlocked

16 Replies

  • No idea why you're feeling like this but perhaps you're overthinking it. Put on your shoes and go out, even if it's a short 20 min run, and see how you feel when you get back.

  • I think sometimes we need a break, like in anything else in life. We push ourselves to run regularly, get faster, run further, etc. But it ebbs and flows just like anything else. A couple weeks off isn't a very long break for three years of running.

    Why don't you get some new tunes or a podcast, put on your running gear and start a new route. Start walking it and if you feel like it run a bit. Or walk it all. Or keep switching between the two. Just enjoy going from point A to B with no rules. We take this running thing too seriously sometimes, it's good when it's fun as well.

    My go-to if I have running glums is unstructured fartleks, it makes me feel like I'm six years old again. Can't do them in the winter here though, too icy.

    Let us know how you get on.

  • Thanks. I do take my running seriously. Maybe need to lighten up a bit.

  • I agree, the only way to get past this is to get your shoes on and go. Don't aim for a time or distance - just give it a go.

    I recognise that fear of not being able to run, but once you put one foot in front of another the body remembers what to do.

    Good luck now.

  • I get a bit like that, a tad sluggish, but have had mild depression anxiety, so virtually everything could be a challenge (a big deal) so imagine how I felt trying to do c25k & Parkruns, but now overcome the gremlins and feel better for it, through running often.

    At this time of year, lack of sunshine? a while back it was found I was low on vitamin D, so doc prescribed me some vit D tablets, but don't know if they helped, I also have a light box I've used in the winter months, but the jury's also out on that. It's a difficult one.

    I've now been trying St Johns Wort tablets for 3 months, don't know about those yet either, I'll try anything once.. But, have just been able to get out for a run this morning in the wind & rain, so maybe they are having an affect..

  • Thank you for the great reply. I think I need just get out and about for a light jog and not worry about the distance. I regularly walk dogs but have not been out as much as I would like either.

  • I can't add anything to the above but please don't beat yourself up! Put your shoes on and go with the flow! You can do it! xxx

  • i think reading your post you may be suffering from classic xmas depression...the routine we have normally is put on hold and you cannot get motivated,,,should clear up next week!!!!


  • Yes I agree this time of year is not the best, not enough daylight. I have depression and anxiety for years. Could be a bit of that going on. But have been okay the last few years.

  • yes I always think xmas should be in June instead light nites and warmer weather!!


  • Hi there,

    I sort of have had the same thing. I found Christmas tiring--I had a nice time and went away to the countryside. I ran a few times and like you eat healthily but enjoyed a few mince pies etc over Christmas. Now back on the healthy eating track.

    When I came back though I found my legs felt like lead and just did not seem to have any get up and go. This has made me doubt myself a bit.

    I think Christmas is just a busy time--even if people have a quiet Christmas there is extra hustle and bustle. It is also the darkest time of the year and it has rained nearly every day since start of November. No wonder people can feel a bit lack luster.

    I put my lack of go down to the busy time I had before Christmas----Maybe you are just a bit tired or have had a busy time. I think having a week's rest is not a bad thing.

    However congratulations for being a runner for 3 years after completing the program --that is an achievement. Even taking part in races !

    You can run ---so don't worry---maybe try a walk/run and see what it feels like. That would still be a good workout and then you can start a full running workout when you feel ready to.

    Good luck.

  • yep

    couldnt agree more!!


  • Lets be honest the grey dismal and wet weather does not help. Don't feel bad about having a break, it is good both physically and mentally to have a break.

    I think the advice here though is right. Put on your shoes, and aim for something quick, and simple. A nice flat 3K or something. Just get yourself out. You'll feel good for doing it, and the buzz will come back.

  • Thanks sounds about right, now if you could just open the door and shove me out!!

  • Been there. I'm going to be blunt here, but the only thing stopping you is yourself. ;) ....and the longer you wait, the more guilty you will feel, and you'll see it as a chore to accomplish rather than the pleasure it is. Once the gremlins kick in then you keep putting it off, so tie the little buggers to a chair, ram the tv remote into their mouths and get on with it.

    As everyone says, put your trainers on and get out there with a promise to run for 20 minutes. Or less. But do it. I'm certain that once you hit that time, you'll keep going. You've got this. Keep us posted!

  • Thanks for the advice

You may also like...