Couch to 5K
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Feeling stressed

Over the past few weeks I've committed to the programme,I completed week 2 on Tuesday and my next running day/week would be yesterday (Thursday) but I couldn't go because it's the school hols and I had no one to have young daughter and same again today,I possibly may be able to get out tomorrow but that's then going to be 4 days,I'm feeling stressed that I can't go and I'm also feeling worried that my progress is going to be wasted...what can I do inbetween? I'm trying to keep up my step goals each day anyway but it's not the same. I was in a foul mood yesterday because I couldn't go and today I feel a bit sad. Will it be best to repeat week 2 WHEN I can get out until I'm in a position to get back to being free to go every other day to continue with week 3? As when little ones back at school?

7 Replies

and breathe....

Things like this happen, it's only a week and you are keeping up your steps. You should be fine to go onto week three next week.

You might want to plan ahead to the summer holidays as this is for a longer period of times, ask around the playground - can you set up an exchange of playdates so that you have time to yourself (and the other mums too when you have the little ones with you) so that you can get out and run.

OR - can your daughter scooter/cycle along with you as a training buddy?

There are probably other ideas out there for others in a similar position to you (my youngest is now 14 so I haven't got the same worries anymore).


I know it's frustrating when we can't run, but you won't lose progress in just a few days. I would pick up where you left off and see how you go. Try not to stress about it though - things do stop us running as planned sometimes whether it's illness or injury or other commitments. Just part of the great running journey! Good luck🙂

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It is often difficult fitting exercise around life commitmentsm especially children. I have 3 chikdren and am a single parent so have to adopt all sorts of strategies to get a run/workout in someties, esp during the holidays. I have run laps round the outdoor pool (the municipal one, we dont have our own), I tak the to the par to play and I run or do pullups on the monkey bars while they are playing on the apparatus etc, or we all play games which invlolve activivty, I get up at absurd hours to work out in the garden before doing breakfasts, I sometimes just do 20 pushups or squats while waiting for the kettle to boil, running their baths etc it all adds up.

Its just fitting in what you can, when you can...

and... it's about letting gp of what you can't do. If there was no time today to do any exercise then that is just how today panned out. Getting stressed about it is the antithesis of fitness. The point of all ths is to rid the body of stress and become healthier. If you have to skip a few days or even a few weeks, so be it. There will always be anotehr opportunity. If ypu couldnt run this week because you were with kids 24/7 then focus on how great it was to be wth your kids and run another time.

P.S. You can always squeeze in 20 squats while brushing your teeth before bed, in my experience.


A most fabulous perspective from Rignold there.

It is perhaps a wee bit harder when you are just learning... learning everything, all the organisational and mental as well as physical stuff, and with a programme. And you can't afford as much of the 'not in the mood' stuff as maybe someone else might be able to get away with. Plus some children are more accommodating than others... We had someone doing tight laps with a buggy whilst her other three used a playground.


In my running mag it suggested linking up at one house with other mums who run. Then each one takes it in turn to go to run for half hour. If you could do that even once a week during holidays it could work.

Can you run early for half hour whilst your partner has the little ones? Or later in the evening......quite nice these long summer days.

If you could do a mix of all three you have quite some flexibility.

Also, can you run each weekend whilst little one is with a relative for an hour perhaps?

It is hard when you are trying to juggle life, but don't be too hard on yourself! Do what you can when you can and enjoy.

Also, how about yoga on YouTube? Could little one join in maybe?


Hello. As a mum myself I empathise :(

How old is your daughter? Could she run with you? The only way I could find this really working for me was to run with my kids? Or as someone else has said can they scooter along with you? Hope you find a way :)


Thank you for all your feedback and support it is very much appreciated.. unfortunately my network is very small and childcare is a big issue and my partner works most weekends and silly shifts during the week,I don't want to run with my child as this is the time I'm focusing on for myself after a 4 year battle with severe mental health issues I need this time for me...but thanks. Anyway I managed w3r1 today after daughter was dropped off for a day out and partner has some holiday booked for the second half of the school hols so I'm looking forward to run 2 (I mean not having to worry about childcare) those 3 mins pushed my breathing to the limit!

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