to new beginnings!

Hi - i am getting ready to start the couch to 5k challenge and have a couple of questions?

is it ok if i do this on a treadmill as opposed to outdoors? - I've read about keeping routes interesting etc but with other commitments i will only be able to do this indoors for the time being - will i get the same results?

and any tips or ideas for a 'late starter' who's age 56 and has NEVER tried running before?

lastly, any tips from ladies who are 'top heavy' (for want of a better word - big busted!) - as this has always been one of the main reasons i have always thought running just wouldn't be for me.

Thanks for listening.


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20 Replies

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  • Hi kazdoc. Yes running on the treadmill is fine though I am sure you will want to go outside as soon as possible.

    I started at 52 and as long as you take it slow make sure you take the rest days and listen to your body so that you don't run when injured you will be fine.

    The first few runs will feel so difficult but gradually you get better.

    Make sure you have a good sports bra, good running shoes and have fun.

  • thank you so much for your reply and advice - can't believe I'm ACTUALLY looking forward to it!!


  • Hi Gnet.

    I'm 54, top heavy and run on the tread mill (well jog). I wear 2 sports bras for fear of hitting my fellow runners. I'm now on week 3 run 2. I take it slow and repeat if I'm not happy. I will be out on the road in the spring. Good luck.

  • Thank you. I'm gonna start tonight. I'll be in touch !

  • Hi Kazdoc.

    The treadmill is fine and should be slightly easier than running outside from the point of view of reducing stress on the joints. I am sure most would agree that you will enjoy running outdoors more, if/when it is possible.

    I am 55 but neither top heavy nor a lady but this question is raised enough for me to know that you should invest in a good quality sports bra.

    In terms of tips. Keep it nice and slow and as soon as you can get some proper running shoes (as opposed to trainers).

  • excellent - thanks for the advice - looking forward to giving it a go!

  • Just to add, not just a good sports bra, but one which is for high impact - so no bounce!

    After I bought mine, which I now love - nothing moves! (As I read on here: "now I know what it feels like to be a man!") I found out about M&S front zipping ones - now that would be a lot easier to get into! πŸ˜‰

    The mantra you will hear repeated again & again is "slow & steady". If you do that you will be amazed how quickly you progress!

    If you can do any of your runs outside, I'm sure you would enjoy the variety, but any run is better than no run I think there's been a few folks on here who did it on a treadmill, so it's certainly possible!

    Final piece of advice: Enjoy! (And keeping posting here. πŸ˜€)

  • Just start it, wherever... it is different, but many on here use the treadmill :)

    You may find you yearn for the great outdoors..or not... follow the programme, take the rest days, and slow and steady does it!

    You are a mere youngster :) Go for it... in a really, really good support sports bra x

  • awww thanks - don't feel like a youngster tho! - haha - thats half the reason i'm down the challenge but i am looking forward to getting started.

    thanks again.

  • thanks for the advice - i'll defo have to get that sorted - 'bounce' is the main concern - that and the fact i may knock myself out! haha - and i'm also hoping the running will help 'reduce' the size of the problem somewhat too!

    thanks again.

  • Hey, my twin! 56, big busted and never run before... Welcome :)

    Can't really add to all the advice so far but would definitely reiterate SPORTS BRA! I spent the first 3 sessions hanging on to them for dear life, foolishly thinking an ordinary 'over shoulder boulder holster' would do the trick. Not so!

    People have completed this programme in all sorts of wonderful ways; running round their front room, their garden, on a treadmill on an oil rig; you name it, I bet it's been done! So jump on your treadmill and join the fun :) :)

  • hahaha brilliant! thank you so much for the encouragement - i'll defo get the bra situation sorted asap - cheers!

  • Hi Kazdoc, you'll be absolutely fine. I started at 55 and many people start older, some much older. Just make sure you have the best sports bra you can afford; it's as vital a piece of equipment as your running shoes. Get fitted properly and go for one that is 'high impact'. M&S have a good selection, as do Bravissimo and, often times, Debenhams. As for the treadmill, well outside is better because it's more interesting but the treadmill is just fine too.

    Keep posting on here with your successes, questions and occasional bad runs (we never say failures). The support here is incredible and it will carry you through any tough times.

    Two pieces of advice: 1) Don't feel you have to complete the programme in 9 weeks; many (maybe most) of us needed to repeat runs or indeed whole weeks before we were ready to move on. There is no problem doing this -better to get it right than to move on too soon and get disheartened or, worse still, injured. 2) Read the NHS guides to how to run and stretch correctly. They're in the pinned posts at the side of the page and are packed with loads of useful advice and information that could just save you from getting injured. Good luck Kazdoc, you're going to love it :)

  • Thanks so much. I'm gonna start tonight.!! I'll be in touch !!

  • I think you have all the advice you need so far above. So, I just wanted to say "Hi", best of luck and enjoy the programme! We are all cheering you on! :)

  • Thanx. Starting tonight. Can't believe I'm actually excited !!

  • Welcome! C25k is such a great programme. Following it is one of the best decisions you will ever make! Like you, so many of us here had never run before we started the programme. I would have rather waited an hour for another bus than break into a jog to catch one! The very thought of running filled me with dread and I used the excuse that I just wasn't the exercising type. Now, like so many others, I couldn't imaging my life without running! Stick with the programme and I promise it will be worth it! I am also rather top heavy and, like you, used to use it as an excuse. A good sports bra is a must. I love shock absorber ones, they are magic and hold everything in place!

    A treadmill is fine. I completed the first 6 weeks on a treadmill but once I got the courage to go outside I don't think I'll ever step foot on one again! I was so self conscious and scared to be seen that I first went out at 10pm dressed all in black! If you ever get the chance to run outside I really would recommend it, just like it was recommended to me at the start. Until you want to venture out (and the weather is nicer, etc) the treadmill will do just fine. :)

    My advice would be go slow (seriously, make a conscious effort to slow down and then slow down even more!), stretch, take your rest days religiously and listen to Laura. You'll be a runner before you know it!

    This forum really is the best place on the internet and is full of the most amazing, inspirational people. Nearly everyone here started where you are having never run before and we all now love running. The programme isn't for those naturally athletic, sporty types, it is for real beginners who have come straight from the couch (often having been there for years and years). I NEVER would have envisaged myself running 5k, let alone enjoying it! The forum folk here absolutely got me through the programme. Post after your runs for advice, encouragement and motivation and to let us celebrate your successes with you. We will be with you every step of the way! :)

  • Thanks for all the advice and encouragement - I'm starting tonight so watch this space !!

  • Good luck! Let us know how you get on! :)

  • Hope it's gone well. While I am not too heavy, I had a mastectomy with reconstruction last January, and then started C25k in August. Had further lumpectomy in other breast in October and had to restart the programme after a couple of weeks break. To begin with I used a sports bra underneath an ultra high intensity sports bra from M&S (the zip up type), because everything hurt with the smallest of movement. But I was able to get on with the running. I'm now just wearing the M&S ultra intensity which keeps everything from. Bouncing at all.

    Good luck.

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