W1 complete - yay!


I'm a 40 yr old mum of 2 and currently walk around 2 miles a day doing the school run so I thought I'd be quite fit (I'm known for walking fast!). I've just recently realised that in around a year's time I won't be doing the school run any more as youngest child will be starting secondary school, so where will my exercise come from?

My youngest is a runner and has been doing the Junior 2k Parkruns whilst I've obligingly watched. Their school has also just introduced the Daily Mile into its routine which my youngest loves and others in the school hate (I'd have been one of those!). This is what has inspired me to attempt to run.

I love walking and am a fast walker but approaching, and now at 40, realised that weight was going on and not coming off, so what could I do that doesn't take too much time out of my day and enables me to increase my fitness? I know, I'll attempt to run! I have always dreaded running (partly due to the dreaded cross country in secondary school in the mist!) as I find it difficult but I thought that seeing as my youngest can do it, why don't I attempt it? I have several friends and relatives that run and enjoy it so it's about time I tried. My aim is to run with my youngest in the 5k Parkrun.

Monday just gone was my 1st run and after downloading the podcast (that was a feat in itself!) I thought I'd give it a try. I was totally puffed out and managed 5 of the 8 "runs" with really wobbly legs and a bright red face. My calves were aching and I ended up with hip pain on one side. I looked up my aches and pains to see if this was normal and realised I needed to get new trainers, so I duly bought more on my rest day.

Run 2 was better and I completed 6 of the 8 runs this time. I had no aching hips this time but was annoyed that I didn't finish all 8 runs and felt downcast. My sister, who runs, mentioned that breathing plays a big part. I didn't realise that you have to train yourself to breathe differently and do "belly breaths" rather than short snatches of breaths.

Run 3 was yesterday and I managed to do all 8 runs and felt really pleased with myself. I focused a lot on my breathing and found this really helped. I don't ache today and look forward to trying week 2 on Monday although I'm dreading running for 90 seconds.

I have total respect for those of you who are also trying to lose significant weight as this week has proved to me how hard, yet rewarding running can be.

Here's to my week 2 - onwards and upwards!

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20 Replies

  • Well done for getting started!! I was exactly like you at the beginning - fine with walking but had always hated running at school and was a massive exercise phobe. People knew me as someone who would rather miss a train/bus than run to catch it! C25K has somehow changed all that and I actually missed running last week when I took 5 days off to rest my knee! Wouldn't have believed that would be the case a few months ago!!

    New shoes are a good idea (others here really suggest a gait analysis at a running shop which can apparently make a world of difference but I myself haven't got around to it yet). I ached a lot in week 1 too. Make sure you stretch properly as this will help your aching muscles. Even if you want to run, stick to your rest days. From week 6 onwards I was quite often taking two rest days to recover as muscles were protesting a bit about the longer distances. Don't be worried about repeating weeks/runs early on if you feel you need to, although at the same time if you have completed a week then you will be ready for the next week even if you feel that you're not!

    This forum is amazing and has absolutely got me through to one run shy of finishing the programme. The support, encouragement and inspiration on here is fantastic. Do ask any questions and post after you runs for support and encouragement along the way. So much experience, knowledge and advice on here so do make the most of it!!

    Happy running!

  • Super post :) Nearly there? :)

  • Thanks Oldfloss - I feel a bit of a fraud giving advice before graduating but some posts about early runs stir up so much emotion about how I felt back then and knowing other people can do it too I just have to respond!

    W9R2 done today. Graduation run early next week :)

  • I feel exactly the same when I read posts about early runs - and it is so great to be able to pay back all the great encouragement and advice that we newbies got from the more experienced runners to other, newer newbies :-) and that is also what keeps a site like this one alive. So don't feel a fraud. You're a hero for sharing your insights with others :-)

  • So appreciated, Iben, thanks! I can waffle on but do love to share experiences to let others know that they can do it too!

  • Not a fraud..we all help each other at all stages..and it helps so much. We all learn from each other all through our running journeys. Thank you for sharing😏

  • Well done :-) I am a week 2 er and found the same week one especially that first run!! But it gets better and I'm loving it just like you - keep posting - great to hear from you.

  • Well done for completing week 1. Psychologically the hardest week. I felt just like you wondering how on earth I would be able to run for minute and a half in week 2. You will do it. You have already kept going on even though it was tough and will probably find similar pattern, achieving it by end of the week. You will be amazed at your progress- just keep going. Keep posting on this forum, the support and inspiration you get here is fantastic and there is always someone to answer questions etc and give advice. I wish I had found it in week one. Good luck☺

  • Welcome, inspiredmum! You have already taken the most difficult step - the first one. I'm 44 myself and started i March, graduated in May and am now running three times a week and loving it! I have never in my adult life run more than 3k and now I'm running 12-14k a week! It still amazes me, and I am sure that in 9 weeks you will be amazed by yourself too. Glad to have you around. Keep posting.

  • You are just a star! x

  • Aw, thank you, sweet Oldfloss, and so are you! x

  • What a great post.. welcome and hi!

    So hard to get started, but you did it!

    You follow the programmes, keep it slow and keep it steady and you will do it.. look at all the graduates, all ages, all shapes, all sizes! We are awesome.. and you are going to be too! :)

  • One thing to note - that you should really be running at a pace which is ONLY just slightly faster than your walking pace!!! I know that this will sound a bit silly to you - isn't running supposed to be a lot faster than walking??? Well - yes, but not yet for you!! :) Try it out sometime -- walk for a while , then walk faster until you can walk no faster - and then launch yourself into a jog , but at much the same speed as your fastest walk. If you had a heart rate monitor , you will see that your HR will go up about 20 or so beats per minutes . This is where the added health benefits of jogging start!!!

  • Snailrunning is the new black

  • Thank you to all those that have replied, I'm blown away by your support.

  • Welcome to the forum Inspiredmum. I can't add much to the great comments already given, but I will echo that you've already done the hardest week. :)

  • I am not sure you are going to want to hear this and no-one has dared to say it yet in the face of your wonderful enthusiasm but we're doing you no favours if we don't so here goes:

    Your next two runs need to be the Week 1 podcast again.

    The idea of the programme is not moving on in calendar weeks but in completing each podcast *in full* 3 times with at least one rest day in between (so all 8 runs with no stopping or walking during a run section). You've completed it once now, so you've two more to go. (So you may well finish with Week 1 *and* start Week 2 in the next calendar week). Those first two runs will have been very useful for your fitness but are not a secure base from which to move on and when we talk about 'graduation' here we are talking of completed runs rather than having been out 27 times and tried (for many of us it takes a good deal more than that!)

    You are doing way better than I did - it took me something between 12 and 18 outings and six or so weeks before I got Week 1 in the bag. But I didn't have to do extra of any of the other podcasts, so it was all good stuff.

    Bazza has rightly emphasised getting speed right down - it is a different *movement* If you are a successful brisk walker as it sounds, you are likely to have been going faster than necessary on the runs, faster than a good foundation for sustaining the run for longer. If slowing down alone doesn't help, taking smaller steps can be tremendously helpful too. Possibly a slower walk might be helpful too (it turned out to be for me but took a very long time for me to realise that was a big part of my problem with Week 1)

  • Great post, i'm also struggling with Week 1 but would rather get that right and give my poor painful body time to adjust before moving on & completing the rest with no problem (hopefully). :-)

  • Welcome and good for you in starting the program! Week 1 was tough for me as well. I had to repeat W1R1, couldn't finish all of the reps for W1R2, but finished W1R3. You will get there. You might try slowing down a bit. A lot of us hit the pavements going too fast at first - let your body adjust and then you can increase the speed. Also, don't overthink breathing too much or you might end up sabotaging yourself. Good luck! You can do it!

  • Sadly I've picked up a knee injury (just put it in another post) so my running has been thwarted for now.

    Thank you everyone for all your encouragement and advice. I have taken everything on board and look forward to when I can continue.

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