Question for you all during the first 9 weeks

Hi all,

so from everything I've read on the net, in books etc etc I'm not expecting to lose weight by running but what I would like to know is during the 9 weeks of doing C25K (not after graduation) did you notice a change in body shape? Leaner? Toned? Dropped any dress sizes etc?

I am a very short 4ft 10" & a size 14 & carry my weight around my stomach downwards so just wondered how it might affect my shape & if it will be for the better rather than just having a big belly & being flabby lol

No point reading on proper running website forums etc as they just seem to moan that they've gone from an 8 to a 10 as their legs have got bigger blah blah. Yes that's not great if you're used to being a size 8 but I'm not so I was hoping some of you lovely slightly bigger ladies could help :)

Thanks all in advance x

Thank you all for your comments they are much appreciated :)

But maybe I wasn't very clear in my question :(

I am NOT expecting to lose any weight through running alone. I have lived on diets for the last 39 years (or it sometimes feels that way lol) so I don't need any advice on do this or don't do that etc etc (but I thank you all again)

I am healthy eating which is what I have done mostly all my dieting life. I do not take sugar in my tea/coffee, I have had sweetener for as long as I can remember & the only sugars I have are from the food/fruits that I eat. I eat fruit & veg almost daily, more veg than fruit, I only eat lean meat & fish & wholewheat rice/pasta & bread which is in very small occasional doses but always wholewheat/wholgrain etc

I have always struggled to lose weight & I think the "I'm on a diet" mindset doesn't help so dieting no more but I will continue healthy eating.

I'm not a binge eater nor do I have large portions, my 12 year old Daughter eats more than I do haha & we don't have takeaways, if we do it might be once a month or even every 2 months. I just simply wanted to know if my body shape will change, tone up & if I'll feel fitter & healthier especially with my recent health diagnosis/condition.

My Fiancé has a full blown gym in our garage (not a garage no more :( ) & he's in there twice a day every day but that just isn't for me & he eats healthily too along with my kids. Mainly daughter because of her age, 18 year old Son does as he please haha so all in all we are a pretty healthy household with the very occasional treat. I don't drink regularly, if I do fancy a glass of Red or Prosecco I have one or 2 on a Saturday night but it's not particularly often.

Again thank you all for your replies & would love to hear experiences from people that haven't graduated yet or are at a similar stage to me

Much love x

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31 Replies

  • My experience is that I feel fitter and healthier having completed C25K - I am able to sustain running for longer (started at 1 minute, can now run for an hour without getting out of breath)! All in all, I lost 28 lbs but this was due to controlling my daily calories rather than running. My shape has improved - I have a waist and a lot of fat has gone off my tummy. My breasts are smaller too. However, don't see my thighs have reduced but my calves are much stronger and firmer! Hope that helps. Sadly since starting running, my weight loss has slowed down to very little, don't know why but still happy to be a regular runner. Julie

  • Well done you, 1 hour wow!!! Well done..

    I do have a waist already, I'm a definite pear shape & if I lose off my bust I fear I'll be needing implants hahaha!! I'd love to lose something from my tummy & my legs to look leaner. The joys of being short :( x

  • I definitely noticed a difference. My weight has fluctuated all through my life ( I am 45 now), especially after my kids I went up to 14 stone ( size 20 and I am 5 foot 8). I did MFP when I started C25k and lost weight ( down to 10 and a half stone). I am now 11 and a half stone but size 10/12 due to the change in my body. The biggest difference is in my legs and bum. They are now toned, firm and strong. I have always had a big bum but now its still feminine but toned and has a slight wobble when I walk but is fit. I can wear tight clothes no problem. Please be encouraged this will change your body but please dont focus on numbers but how you feel and your clothes feel too... Good luck xx

  • Thank you & well done you!!

    I'm not bothered about what the scales say, I've learnt that with my life long battle with my weight but I want to feel comfortable in my clothes. Last year I lost 20lbs on weight watchers, took over a year BUT I lost 9" off my waist in 6 months, I definitely lose inches faster than lbs so am happy with that. x

  • Hi Vicky,

    my weight is pretty much the same. But my stomach is flatter (jeans are more roomy) and i have lost some weight around my face and chin (very happy about that )

    I do feel more toned all over too.

    I am not dieting but do stick to fairly healthy regular meals. If I fancy a cake though i will have it.

    I don't think you will notice much change in shape until you are doing the longer runs regularly but you will start to feel the health benefits soon. More energy,

    knees not so stiff plus a more confident outlook because you are doing something for yourself and achieving what seemed impossible.

    Its a great program. :)

  • Thank you

    I'm expecting to gain rather than lose tbh as I (hopefully) change fat into muscle lol. I do eat healthily, just don't seem to lose weight. I think my body is just happy the way it is, sadly I'm not haha x

  • Your legs will not increase in size from running. Anyone on a proper running forum who claims that is kidding themselves. Running will make you leaner ('toned' is a nonsense word with no meaning whatsoever). Running will not make your muscles bigger - certainly not distance running. Does Paula Radcliffe look particualrly bulky to you? Consistent running combined with sensible nutrition (not eating more because you have just been for a run!) will result in weight loss though, and more specifically, fat loss (which diet alone will not do) so you will become trimmer looking faster. There is no such thing as spot-weight loss though. It comes off equally from all the fat deposits all over the body. You will probably notice the loss more in the 'problem areas' though.

  • Oh I've been dieting since the day I was born, there isn't a tablet, pill, potion, diet blah blah that I haven't tried legal & illegal EXCEPT exercising at the same time so my healthy eating is now getting a help in hand from this programme (hopefully!!) so fingers crossed I should start to see a difference.

    They have proper rants on those forums about how they've gained clothes sizes from their thighs getting bigger, they don't look feminine any more, they have the 'marathon runner' look. What the heck is a marathon runner look?? ;) So I started to panic a bit haha

    Thank you x

  • Well, 'dieting' is designed to keep people coming back, unfortunately, which is why all those Sliming World/Weight Watchers have the 98% recidivism rates they do, and why the diet industry juggernaut keeps trundling along. The line I always quote for nutrition is Glassman's:

    "Eat meat and vegetables, nuts and seeds, some fruit, little starch and no sugar. Keep intake to levels that will support exercise but not body fat."

    It's what we all know, but don't really want to buckle down to, and it's only two sentences which isn't going to sell a book.

    I've seen those forums too. It's demial I think. The only look I associate with marathon runners is very lean and wiry tbh. Sprinters look quite muscley. Distance runners don't.

    That said, my wife does circuit sessions at the gym with people who claim their steadily creeping weight gain is because they are gaining muscle through their cardio activities and muscle weighs more than fat. They then go outside and scoff a packet of bourbons in the carpark after working out.

    Building muscle takes many many months of consistent heavy resistance training. You should see the horrors bodybuilders endure on leg day to gain even 1/2 inch on their thighs.

  • I just generally feel much fitter and healthier..I think the word is trimmer....I lost half a stone,because of the running, I have a sensible diet anyway, and am actually a little lighter than I would like to be.

    So...I think you will be well pleased with the outcome of your efforts! :)

  • Thanks Oldfloss, the support on here is amazing x

  • Every body is different and I believe your current level of activity will play a factor on whether or not you lose weight/inches. When I started I was eating healthy (not dieting) and swimming a couple of times a week, which I had started 3 months prior. The swimming hadn't done anything drastic to my weight loss, just made me feel livelier and gave me a lovely tan. But my activity level has risen by leaps and bounds thanks to this program, and the number on the scale is sloooowly going down. The biggest change is what I can see and feel: my clothes fit better, I'm no longer reduced to tears when I have a night out (I always felt fat and frumpy and disappointed in myself for letting it get so far), my cheekbones are prominent, and most importantly I have energy and am fitter. And I'm only on week 5. I continue to eat healthy too, but if I feel like a slice of pizza I'll eat it because I know a slice or two occasionally won't kill me.

  • Sounds exactly what I'm after, to feel fitter, healthier & not have a huge strop when I leave the house because I feel fat frumpy & 95 haha. I don't get time to do anything other than the running, that's why i chose it as ot's 30 mins 3 times a week, with work, house, other half & kids I'm lucky I have time to take a shower!! lol

    I eat sensibly apart from the weekend when I may have a glass or two of wine, we don't have takeaways at all but I might have a dessert if we eat out or a bag of crisps on a Saturday night ;) x

  • I lost nearly two stone in a year through running and the change in diet it incurred (Healthier eating, and stopping alcohol). I lost from all over my body and I have toned up my legs, stomach, bottom and waist. My legs are slimmer and firmer. But most importantly, I am much less prone to anxiety (goodbye comfort eating), I have gained in confidence and determination, and feel much more positive. Running is an all-round winner for everything - weight loss, if it occurs, is just one of the multiple benefits of this programme. Keep a log out of interest and jot down your measurements once a week.

  • I started a food diary in week one, but wasn't planning "dieting" as I wanted to tackle one issue at a time and fitness came as a higher priority. I've found that I don't eat so much junk anymore partly because I feel so good after a run, and partly because I have to write everything down (that's the rule), and dare I say this ....every time I'm tempted to eat cake or biscuits that guy Rignold gets into my head telling me not to, but I'm definitely not on a diet.

    I've lost 12lb's without trying. I haven't gone down in size yet, but my clothes fit better. My waist is more defined, my stomach is flatter, and the shape of my bottom has improved. Best of all, loads of people who didn't know I was running have noticed I look healthier and happier.

    Just wish I had done strength and flex as well.

  • You won't lose much weight if any doing c25k, that comes when you can run constantly for 30mins 3 times a week and control the calories, fats and sugars. Saying that, c25k will trim you up a tad...

  • As I said i'm not expecting to lose weight I wanted to know if I'll firm/tone up. As a non runner I've no idea what will happen to my body x

  • Try it and see! Good luck!

  • Hi vickyb!

    I'm the same as you and a lifelong dieter. I piled on weight when I quit smoking and had already lost 6 stone when I embarked on C25K last year. I wanted to get fit, but even more so I wanted continue and expedite my weight loss.

    Now I'm a fully addicted runner. Love it. Can't imagine not running. And I'm like you - don't really eat junk food or takeaways - drink in moderation and enjoy the odd treat. Portion control is my main issue - good, healthy food but too much of it.

    So, in answer to your question - no, running didn't help me lose weight. But for the first time in my life it has stabilised my weight and I'm fitter and more body confident than I've ever been. I've dropped a dress size too.

    Having said that, I've just signed up to Slimming World and have lost 8.5lbs so far. My motivation?? To lose weight so I can run faster and longer! :-D

  • Well done you, that's brilliant. Again as above my question wasn't about losing weight but all the answers are focusing on that lol. I don't expect to I just want to tone up & look firmer. You'll know exactly what I mean with losing so much weight, that really is brilliant well done.

    Couldn't stand the thought of doing SW again, jacket potatoes & beans or pasta & sauce, that's all I think of now when I think of SW hahaha I know it's much more than that but it's not for me now. Good luck on your weight loss & running journey xx

  • I'm watching my calories and eating healthily - 12 week plan from nhs website. I started c25k at the same time and am losing a steady 2lb a week 😊 so it can be done. One note of caution - don't think you can eat more because you'll burn it off by running - you'll probably eat more than you burn off ...

  • At the minute I burn 51 cals per 30 mins that was during week 1 & I'm only doing week 2 run 2 tonight so not even a biscuit worth haha. It is making me not want to eat rubbish which I rarely do anyway but when you see the small amount of calories burnt for what seems like a hard 30 mins it certainly makes you think twice :) x

  • I didn't notice any weight loss during those 9 weeks but some people do. For weight loss, I'd try to simplify your diet: cut out all sugar, reduce fruit and carbs and drink a couple of extra glasses of water a day. Maybe replace one meal a day with a soup or salad. Weight loss may not be dramatic but combined with 3 x 30 min runs per week, you should lose fat. If you think about it just dropping sugar from your tea and going for a brisk walk a day would have you losing weight so any intensification of exercise or sugar reduction would get you there faster. No need for fancy diets in my opinion.

    I like crisps too but sadly they are pure junk for your body. It is like eating a bag of sugar.

  • I have added to my original question as I feel like things have gone a little off what i was asking & I'm still really not much wiser haha x

  • From my experience, I'll admit to being a little disappointed in those first few months that my legs and bum didn't start to feel as firm as I'd hoped. I think the turning point was a few weeks of running 3 x 5k (post graduation). At this stage, I could really tell the difference. The scales said the same weight but I felt slimmer, less wobbly and smoother lines! A year on, I feel like I have a different body. I can see muscles I previously didn't realise were there.

    One more point ... I appreciate your question was not about diets but I'd say the more I got into running the healthier my diet became. My body started to crave healthier food. Thus, I think if you already have quite a balanced diet and ditching junk food is not a problem for you then you will hopefully naturally benefit in this area too.

    Good luck with the running ☺

  • Thank you I certainly don't expect to see a huge difference straight away I'm just hoping my body will go in to shock at the fact I'm doing some form of exercise & say "ooh she means business best start changing from fat to muscle" hahaha

    Well done xx

  • I have never in my life been "on a diet" or counted calories. I have however always eaten a reasonably balanced diet as I love cooking and almost always cook from scratch. I don't have a sweet tooth so don't have too much sugar (cheese is my weakness) although I like a glass of wine. All through my life I have been a little overweight but I found my weight was creeping up into 'obese' territory post-menopause. Doing C25K was mostly a response to the sluggishness I was feeling, rather than an attempt to lose weight. C25K became a gateway to doing more exercise in general. I am 'active' most days with one or more forms of serious exercise on 4 or 5 days a week. The 7 or 8Kg of extra post-menopause weight came off with out me changing diet - slowly and gradually over 8 or 9 months. I was able to reclaim clothes that had got too tight and am able to buy new stuff 1 or 2 sizes smaller than before. I am probably now at the weight I was through my 40s and still very slowly losing weight.

  • Definitely change on body shape. I'm fitting clothes the scales say I have no business fitting! But I'm working on the weight as well. Not easy is it?

  • That's exactly what I'm after. Don't really mind what the scales say just want to be comfortable in my clothes x

  • My weight's hardly changed, but people do comment that I;ve lost weight so I think my shape is changing. My OH tells me he thinks it has :) Just wish I'd taken measurements regularly so I could see it for myself.

    That doesn't bother me too much, whilst I don't love the run, I do love the feeling afterwards and that keeps me going

  • Brilliant. Tonight's run W2R2 seemed harder than any other. Maybe because I was tired & have hardly eaten today but oh it hurt. I just go round & round in my head repeating 'you can do this, you can do this' lol x

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