Couch to 5K
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I want to give this my best shot

So I just signed up today and haven't done any running (yet). I have been making some diet changes and have managed to lose a little over a stone so far, but with about another 7 stone left to go, I need to get exercising as well.

I want to give myself the best chance I can to succeed so I need some advice and have a few questions.

Does the terrain matter much, we have some nice paths that loop round my estate but its got rather a lot of hills, would I be better finding somewhere flatter?

For the ladies, Im an H cup in an bra at the moment so there is only so much even a sports bra can do, how much of a problem is that likely to be?

Im literally at the tail end of a cold, should I start out regardless or wait a few days, I dont want to just make another excuse but I dont want to cause problems for myself either.

Ive spent many years making excuses and Im really determined to make a change, but change is scary so please reassure me it will all be ok :D

8 Replies

Hi dipdab.. wonderful that you're starting the programme! Change IS scary but this change will bring you SO many benefits. It sounds like you have already started the process towards a fitter you and have a determined mindset, which is half the battle. I can't give you definitive answers on terrain or whether to go out whilst still a bit 'coldy', as it would only be my opinion and there are lots more people on here who can advise you properly. The one thing I would say is a good sports bra is a 'must'. I battled through a couple of weeks in a tight fitting one piece swimsuit over the top of an ordinary bra and although it stopped me knocking myself out, the difference with a sports bra was nothing short of miraculous! There are lots of ladies on here who can talk you through various options, I think Shock Absorber bras are a favourite of many. I wish you cool runnings (whenever you start) and look forward to cheering you on through your journey :)

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Hi, Well Done, Sounds like your on just the right path.

Flatter would be nice..... but if you only have hills, then hills it is :)

My sister who has a large bust wears two sports bras, perhaps this is an option ?

If you cold is at the tail end and you have no symptoms below then neck then you should be ok. However it is your first run, so an option could be to go for a 20-30 min walk today as a warm up for W1R1 ?

It will be ok.

Run very slowly.

Repeat runs if need be. Move on when you have ( slowly ) completed them.

Good Luck, I am excited to hear how it goes - let us know :)


Hi, welcome, you can run if it's just the sniffles, but running with anything throaty and below on the chest is a big no-no. If the colds a tailender as you say, like just a tad mucusy, then a small run may help loosen it.

Of course, you will find it tough, but will really notice small benefit's as you go on with c25k, you may or may not loose any weight, I tend to think you will because of the amount you have to lose, but don't bank on it, that must be helped by calorie intake, weight will come off more as you graduate and run constantly for 30mins 3 times a week. Make sure, say after you've tried walk/run for about the first week, that you have some decent fitting running shoe's with good cushioning.

Try and find a good flat hard surface route with minimal interference from crossing roads etc, for you to do the programme, hills will make it so much harder for you, can you get to a nice flat park or track? You can bring in some hills later as you progress after graduation, they will benefit enormously with your stamina.

You will reap the benefit's of your effort's if can percivere with the programme, remember only go slow & steady running ONLY just above walking pace, that's it. Many go off too fast and wonder why they have bad pains in the legs, the body has to adjust. You may get some minor aches & pains, probably will, we all do, but they can be kept to a minimum if slow & steady..they are managed..

I've probably put you off now! Hope not! Just a few facts that me & the wife and most members on here know.

We did c25k at 60-61 as have many others in thier 50s and 60s, about the best thing we ever did! Really! Good luck!😊


If you're still feeling ill why not commit to a walk around your running route? That'll get you starting the habit.

As for the terrain, I'm going to give probably opposite advice from most. I'd start with the route you eventually want to run - those hills. They are harder, no doubt about that. But you'll also get fitter, so much faster. And you get used to them - you learn how to run them. If that's where the nice paths are, there you must run.... Just keep your running slow, and if you have to repeat a run a couple times while you build fitness so be it. Also keep a flat route in your back pocket in case you need an easier run or a nice pick-me-up.

Enjoy your runs and you'll find out what works for you personally. There is no wrong answer, except in the not-enough-support-in-the-bra department. :)


Thanks for the advice so far. Ill try walking my route today as im still coughing and a little chesty but feeling like its clearing out if you know what I mean.

Ill start the program for real Monday or Tuesday next week which should give me time to get completely clear of this cold and get to the shops for a second sports bra, I have one but never thought about doubling up.

I also think I will probably try the hills, Im trying to do things on my lunchbreak the days I work from home so the paths would be easiest, but there is a park a 5 minute drive away thats a bit flatter that I could switch to if I find it too tough. Being able to run to and around the park is a stretch goal for me :)


If you eat healthily and keep running you will lose weight! I don't see how you couldn't. Once you are in calorie deficit the weight will come off. You won't need any extra grub while doing C25k though. Not until you start running half marathons will you need some extra eats to top up lost calories

It's proper good fun Dipdap so get going asap. As long as you go really slowly you'll be fine. It's one of those times that slow really is best

Lots of other folks are just starting out so you can compare notes. We're always here to shore you up should you need any reassurance. We also gives kicks up the arris and stern talking-to's should the need arise

The early sessions are very gentle, just a walk with a little jog tagged on, so nothing to worry about. Honest it's fun and will hopefully get you giggling with glee

Shockabsorber is prob the best for you!


Loads of great advice above - just wanted to say welcome to the programme and the forum - you won't regret this resolution!

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I either had two colds or it wasnt as near the tail end as I thought so I havent been able to start my running which is a bit disappointing as Ive been all chesty and coughing for nearly a week. I have been walking my route though, and I have worked out that I have two options, one is mainly uphill but on a gradual gradient and downhill at the end, the other is going up the steep sections at the beginning with a gradual downhill the rest of the way. Ill try out both and see what works out best.

Fingers crossed it clears this time and I can get started on week 1


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