W3r2 couldn't do it - help!: Have finally bitten... - Couch to 5K

Couch to 5K

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W3r2 couldn't do it - help!


Have finally bitten the bullet and joined a beginners group at my local running club. All ok up to this week when we've moved up to 3mins running - and now I feel like I've hit a wall - my back hurts when I run, my feet hurt and last night I just had to stop as I couldn't keep going ,cried and went home. Could kick myself but it just wasn't working. Not sure if it's the time of the day of the run (7.30 pm) or what I've eaten but when I do the homework run I go in the morning and struggle but last night even the first run of 90 seconds was hard going. Now I'm embarrassed to go back to the club - help!

14 Replies

Aw... have a hug. Chin up, chuck. You're very brave joining a club - I was still hiding at that point in the programme. Maybe running with other people puts extra pressure on you to go as fast as the others and "perform" - just a thought, but why don't you give it a try on your own, with no added pressure? You say that you do the 'homework run' - how many times do you run per week alone and at the running club? Are you having days off between them? Don't be hard on yourself - you've got this far, so be proud of yourself and believe in yourself. You can do this.

lisereGraduate in reply to mfamilias

There are 2 runs with the club and one on my own. Some of the others are already running 2 miles 3 times a week on their own so they're off into the distance which doesn't help you're right.

Going to get some new trainers and get back out there next week, I am determined to get there !

mfamiliasGraduate in reply to lisere

That's the spirit! New shoes may help on the back pain issue, and will definitely help with motivation and all-round happiness (gotta love new shoes!). You're in this for yourself - and you're only competing with yourself. If the others can do 2 miles 3 times a week, then let them get on with it, and don't let it affect you. Now of you go to get those neeewwww shoooooes :D

lisereGraduate in reply to mfamilias

Got myself some lovely new shoes - went out this afternoon, no problems at all(apart from being knackered but hey ho! ) seems that perhaps I am just not an evening runner?

mfamiliasGraduate in reply to lisere

Fabbydabbydoobilous! It could well be... avoid over-analysing, and listen to your gut instinct, it's generally right. And most importantly, be proud of what you are doing.


I joined a beginners runners group twice before and both times was a disaster. This is the best programme I've found to be honest.


Hi lisere believe me I know personally just how you feel! (I'm on my fourth attempt to get through the C25K programme). I've also recently joined a local running club and their course differs from C25K so I'm trying to balance the two together - tricky! Whatever you do, don't stop ... you've done the hardest part by getting out there. As for being embarrased to go back to the club, don't be, everyone will be delighted to see you and be proud of you for having had the courage. If your running club is like mine (perhaps I'm just lucky, but I do so much hope yours is similar) quietly ask one of the coaches if you can run with them this time - my coaches go around looking for anyone who is struggling like me. Others on this forum will tell you that I collect all manner of quotes, slogans, things that inspire me, things that amuse me, things that are just plain quirky. "Courage doesn't always roar. Sometimes courage is the little voice at the end of the day that says I'll try again tomorrow" (Mary Anne Radmacher)

lisereGraduate in reply to davidhwynn

Thanks - they do have a front runner, a back marker and 2 floaters . The others in the group are so far in front and I think that didn't help last night. I'd had a bad day at work, had rushed in , had a row with the pre teen daughter, dropped her off at swim training and was starving, so maybe it was just a really really bad day. I will go back, they are all really supportive and I did do 90% of the course, I just walked!

davidhwynnGraduate in reply to lisere

Perfect, don't ask the tail runner, collar one of the floaters ... if it's anything like my running club (been there twice now, second time last night, thought I would die!) those floaters are there to run with and encourage people who struggle. As you gather I didn't die last night, because I'm still here annoying you! By the way, I've given up feeling embarrased because everyone's supportive and friendly - I'm doing my third Parkrun tomorrow (well, Parkwalk mostly in my case) even though I was last before.


Don't cry. Just save run group til after graduation. You can do the programme at your own pace, not someone else's 🙂


There are so many factors that effect your run. Time of day is totally one of them, also what you ate or drank (or didn't drink) during the day. If you're tired too. And if it was just a bad run, we all have them, then you're no further behind anyone else, it was just a bad run. The others in the group will have them too.

If you want to be in a running club then give it another try and as others have said, speak to someone about getting support. After all that's why they're there.

Good luck, chin up and dry your tears. You'll do it.


I wouldn't contemplate running in the evening! Tucked up on my sofa by then. Well done for giving it a shot. Isn't there some quote about failing being the key to success (or is it the omelet and the eggs proverb)? Anyway, crying releases oxytocin and makes you (even) nicer 😊. Good luck and keep us posted.

I don't know much... but I believe that the first battles running are against yourself.

Maybe, as others have said, put the club on hold until you are confident with your own abilities

And you will make it; just take your time


Well now just about to start week 5 tomorrow evening- went out yesterday and ran longer than it said because I felt ok and that I could do a bit more and I did - it wasn't easy but I wasn't shattered either, I seem to find the last run segment easier than the first for some reason ! This week is run 7 walk 2 and repeat plus 5 mins walk either end so it really ups the running time from 3 mins- next week we're away and it ups to 10 mins run 1 min walk so looks like I'm taking my trainers and running round a campsite in the Loire valley !

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