Too heavy to run?

First off hi! I'm Jim, 5,10 & badly overweight, possibly 19st? Not sure how much I weigh, too scared to look! I'm very active at work as a plumber, yesterday I fancied getting on my treadmill, years ago I used to do a 15min run daily but I stopped. I wanted to do 30 mins, that's a tall order for me but I did it, I did a minimum of 4mph & went up to 6mph & a bit of 5mph. Did it again today, I'm now planning on doing that daily & trying to reach the goal of 5k in 30 mins but am I too heavy for this? It does hurt my lower back a bit but I sort of expected that with this belly!


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33 Replies

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  • Do couch to 5k programme, which is what we are all doing here. It's great! You build up gradually from nothing to 5k in 9 weeks, running 3 times a week.

    You go slow as a snail. Slow is fine. Time/distance doesn't matter. it's all about finishing

    If you keep running, combined with a healthy diet you will lose weight. How could you not!

    I would have thought running outside would be easier on your legs and back than a treadmill. But the dreadmill is better than not running at all. If you run slowly you don't put yourself under as much strain. You can't run too fast if you've not run for ages. Start slow and build up. Walk before you can run sorta thing

    Carrying a lot of weight, especially round the middle, will make you ache. You'll have a much better back if you do some exercise. Pilates is especially good and yoga is as well. Running regularly is great for shedding the pounds. You could literally run your belly off.

    C25k is fun too, once you get into it.

  • Another recommendation for Couch to 5k from me, too. You can download the podcasts. Obviously you are capable of keeping going for longer than the times in the early sessions but I think by going into it doing 30 minutes running without walk intervals, especially daily, you are at risk of injury. The C25k programme builds you up gradually which is much safer, especially as you say you are carrying more weight than you would like. Rest days are important, too.

  • Never, say never... You listen to the advice.. start this.. and think snail on a go-slow! And then slower... follow the programme take your rest days, add in some strength and flex.. and it, and us will see you through !

    This is the best thing ever, and has been successfully completed by all sizes, shapes and ages too! Support on every step of your journey...friendly advice and the odd shove if necessary!

    Seriously.. go for it! C25K is the way to go... :)

  • I second all of the advice given to you by the three wise people above! Do the C25K! You will not regret it. Turned my life around.

  • As the ladies have said: you might succeed doing your own thing, but as long as you maintain motivation you're guaranteed to succeed if you follow the c25k program. Good luck, you can do this!

  • Read the early posts of the vast majority of Graduates - we honeslty never thought we could do it. Overweight, asthmatic, geriatric, plantar fascistic, smoke scarred lungitis, foot bones screwed - itis.....

    And that was just me! :)

  • Agreed ...look at my first post and all the others comments.mkept me right on and now I am four runs away from graduation!

  • Thanks all! I'll read into the plan, what's all this graduation I read about? 5k under 30?

  • Graduation is 30 mins of continuous running 3 times. The distance doesn't matter, most people don't hit 5k during the programme, and even after graduation it takes longer than 30 mins for many (including me).

  • All of the above!

  • Couch to 5k is a great way to get back into running slowly but surely. Well done for making the difficult decision to start. Keep us updated here

  • No way are you too heavy. I am 6'6" and at one point was about 22 stone. Now running C25K and am less than 19 stone and have lost a stone and a half in the six weeks I have been doing the programme. Keep it up dude. As Miss Wobble says, you will just run your belly off. Good luck

  • Thank for all the positives! I'm planning on another 30 minutes tonight, then off to the fit shop tomorrow to get my gait measured, it's been a while & ive mislaid my running shoes, so I'm pretty sure there normal nikes aren't helping me at all! I'm planning on two rest days this weekend & back on it Monday.

  • Are you decided yet on following the programme? You won't regret it if you do and will have the support of this forum!

    Go on, go for it ๐Ÿ˜ƒ๐Ÿƒ๐Ÿป๐Ÿ‘Ÿ

  • The NHS program has been designed to help all abilities get to running 30min continuously. It has been formulated so it protects your muscles and joints as they adjust to the new movements that will be asking of them. Speed is not relevant as you start to go through the program that comes after graduation, the most important thing is you do it all in your own time. Some of us took longer than the nine weeks but that's fine we all got there in the end. This forum is a great support place to share your journey and we are here for the highs and the lows (hopefully you won't have any lows). There is a links Inbetween the posts on the main page that takes you to the webpage to get the program. Good luck.

  • Thanks, I'll read into the plan before tonight's run, I think I'm pretty close to doing what it said anyway from the quick look at it, I've been doing 4mph 5mph & 6mph at a mixture, I mean 4mph isn't really a jog is it?

  • Currently reading the plan, so, is walking 4mph or 3.5mph?

    & running is? 4-5mph?

    I know it varies between the individual but as a rough guide?

  • Too heavy? Nope!

    I was 24 1/2 stone when I started C25K at the end on July 2016.

    I've lost another 4 stone since then. (9st total in 12 months - 5st still to go).

    You can do C25K but my advice would be enjoy it! You'll not continue if you start to resent it.

  • Please try not to worry about speed.

    I'm sure my walking and running speed were the same for quite a while!

  • Hi Jim, yes, do it! You will get a few aches & pains as you start doing it, especially with all the weight, but should improve as you go on, you really need to control your diet and what goes in your mouth for good weight loss. I don't count calories, I simply check closely the fats & sugars in the foods and keep them down and drink plenty of water which helps a lot with weight loss, as I found to my benefit, you need to keep well hydrated anyway..

    Take it really slow & steady and have some good cushioning running shoe's to take the impact on your feet & legs.

    It'll be tough make no mistake, but you'll definitely benefit from your effort's. A lot on here have benefited as I have..

  • Well done you!

    I'd say the treadmill is a sensible way to start and will be easier on your back and legs than running on harder surfaces like pavements or roads.

    I'd also advise you to be a bit careful - you're 19st but you've started running again and immediately done 15 minutes and now 30. That's a big ask for your body, especially if you haven't run for along time. The reason your lower back is hurting isn't just your weight but also that body just isn't used to extra forces you're putting it through.

    I think most of us here would advise you to back off a little and try starting the Couch to 5k programme - if only to let your body gently get used to running again.

    Hope that helps

    Good luck!


  • Thank you all! !its great to get such a fantastic positive response! I'm far too self conscious to run on road at this stage so the treadmill is a must! I'm going to download the C25K plan later & stick to that! Pointless asking advice just to ignore it!

  • These guys really know their stuff. I can't state enough what an amazing forum this is, all the best !

  • Hi Jim and Welcome aboard !

    Yes, do the C25k programme, you can download it from here .

    No need to even think about speed or distance with this, you just follow the programme and thats it .

    Good Luck ! I wish you all the very best and please keep posting so that we can support you along your way :-) xxx

  • Hi Jim,

    From a very recent graduate (that means I got to the three runs in week 9 where you run for 30 minutes) I would thoroughly recommend the programme and also this forum. Everyone shares their highlights and low lights and everyone is very supportive. The advice and encouragement certainly helped me overcome some of the more difficult moments. Good luck, and look forward to reading about your runs. ๐Ÿƒ ๐Ÿ‘

  • Just finished my first "official " C25K! I did cheat a little & try week 2, run 1 though..!

    So how many runs are meant to be done per week?

    I was planning on resting sat/sun & running again Monday?

  • Three runs a week - make sure that you have at least one rest day between each run. Try not to rush ahead - sticking with the programme makes it less likely that you will get injured. I also recommend the knee-strengthening exercises in the accompanying video. I got impatient a week ago but I'm glad that the folks here talked me down. I'm having a lot of fun and don't want to have to stop due to injury.

  • Ok, so basically it's run Monday, Wednesday & Friday? That doesn't sound a lot? I ran last week 3 times so I can start on Wk2 R1 on Monday?

  • Well if you're in a big hurry you could do Monday Wednesday Friday Sunday Tuesday Thursday Saturday Monday etc, which would give you seven runs in a fortnight. But don't be in a hurry! Those rest days are crucial as your body adjusts to the shock of being told it's going to be a runner. Many injuries are related to not resting. And if you read the science, the rests aren't actually rests at all but the time when the muscles build.

    All the best.

  • Don't worry about your speed - I do c25k with my husband and dog, which is me running and them walking alongside :D

    Good luck, it feels great to work your way through the weeks.

    Don't feel self conscious to run outside - you're doing something wonderful! I'm VERY overweight and managing ok, if your knees etc start to hurt slow down and take extra rest days..

  • So I did W2R1 yesterday as I started last week, must of been a Monday thing but man, I really really struggled, maybe because I didn't have my running shoes? But my feet started to pinch up after 15 mins, I tried to stretch it as I walked but I couldn't, I eventually stopped at 20, streched & re started the next 10 to complete the 30 mins.

  • Completed W2R3 on Friday, a real struggle As I had a tough week at work & was tired, but I still managed the run & am looking forward to W3 now.

  • Managed W3R1 today, felt like the 3min run was a bit much if I'm honest? Running at 6mph walking at 4mph.

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