Couch to 5K
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I did it!

Yesterday i posted unsure if i would be able to continue and got great support from this page! So i did it, only w1r3 but i managed it! I found i had to pause it once or twice as i needed a little longer than the 90 secs recovery. Just a quick question although there is a warm and warm down walk, should i do stretches before and after? I get about half way through my run and my calfs pretty much start to cramp/seize up and today my foot went totally numb like really bad pins and needles and it took a good 15 minutes to walk it off. It was like dragging a dead weight behind me! Thank you for all of your support and advice! :)

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Well done Rebecca. I knew you would do it.

I don't know the answers to your questions so I hope someone will be along soon.

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Thank you :)

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I stretch both before and after the runs. The pins and needle feeling can be caused by a number of things. It is due to pressure on a nerve. Perhaps for example your laces were too tight.

Hope this helps

Ps. Top job on sticking with it. You want it and you're doing it..... simples!

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I think i might start stretching. I had tied my laces loser today as it also happened last time. It may be my trainers. Im going to have to work out what it is because its painful and stops me. Thank you for the help :)

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i've had to relace my trainers as what normally happens is your feet can and will swell which could cause pressure on nerves and could restrict the proper flow of blood (i am no medical expert so please don't quote me on this) as for the feeling in your calf muscles i find stretching helps but i've also got really decent gel inserts in my trainers (bought separately) which massively help, also don't rush i find if i rush my jogs then my legs hurt more gradually increase the pace when your body tells you it can take it, carry on you will enjoy it i certainly am

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You definitely should be stretching after every run. And if you've not had gait analysis and properly fitted running shoes do that.

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Okay thank you. Im unsure what gait analysis is? I have new balance trainers, arent specially fitted but as i am a student i dont think that would be in my price range atm.

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my trainers are a half size bigger to allow my toes to spread out

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Well done on completing your first week! Can't advise on the pubs and needles but I have stretched at the end of every warm down run and thankfully injury free so far. So I'd say, slow down as much as possible and give the post run stretches a go .

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Thank you! I am as slow as i can go. Next one is on saturday so will try stretches before and after. Just unsure on what stretches to do. Would you have any suggestions? :)

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These are great thank you!

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Stretch after not before your run. Your warm up walk should be enough to warm your muscles up at the start

Stretching cold muscles can cause problems.

Great work on keeping going and don'the be afraid to repeat the week if you need to. Lots of people have to start with a week 1/2 rather than starting with week 1, so you are doing well. :)

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They just hurt so much after the 3rd 60 sec cycle! I dont think im getting enough oxygen to them but im not sure how to make it better. I will start stretching afterwards! Thank you for the advice!

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can't advise on the pubs ... lol ;p ... i could certainly advise on a few good pubs ;)

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Ohh that may be handy! Ahaha

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So pleased!! One foot in front of the other. I find stretching out using my door steps when I get home and touching my toes- legs straight- after every run really helps. I'm no expert but it works for me!!

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Thank you! I am going to give it a try!

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Well done you! I've just done W1R1, so you are my inspiration to keep going :)

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Whoo well done you! You can do it! Good luck and have fun on your next one! :)

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Well done you, I go tomorrow, so will use your commitment as a good reason to haul my sorry ass out of bed...

Gait analysis can be got at any decent running shop some have treadmills and videos, others have people who just watch what you do. The pay off is usually a new pair of trainers though!

But in time with your walking and running your trainers will need replacing anyway. Difficult when cash is limited, but your feet are your body's foundation and incorrectly fitting/supporting shoes can do you more damage than good. So the best investment you can make is in the best shoes and sports bra you can possibly afford.

I've read conflicting advice about stretches before and after - I tried doing them and not doing them, truthfully I couldn't tell the difference.

Looking forward to your Week 2 posts - go girl

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Goo you! Thank you for the advice! I get paid in july but will be in aberdeen so will have to research where i could go! I dont have a sports bra either 🙈 the pain in my calfs is so bad i could cry at some point, probably just a baby!

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I always stretch afterwards - always. I used to be a bit hit and miss and couldn't always be bothered. Then I got calves that were so tight I had to take time off running. Now I spend ages stretching afterwards (do the right stretches and you can spend some time lying down looking at the sky so an added bonus :-) )and actually find it quite relaxing. As for the gait analysis - I hear you. However, if you are wearing the wrong type of trainers then once you start increasing the distance and time you're running you could injure yourself to the point of having to stop running. I think Decathlon do gait analysis - although I've never had it done there myself so can't vouch for how good it is - so you could try there as there would be less pressure to buy than at a specialist running shop. I can't afford expensive trainers so what I do is find a website that sells trainers that are a couple of seasons old (brand new, but not the most up to date version) and get them there. I got a pair of Brooks that originally retailed at £120 for £55. Still a lot of money - but without them, I wouldn't be able to run and there are so little other costs to running that I can live with it. Start Fitness is a good website to try once you know what type of shoe you need. Then go to ww.runrepeat.com for really good reviews and advice on a particular shoe.

I'm about to start W9 but I really, really struggled in the first few weeks. If you're finding it tough - as I did - then you can always think about repeating a week until you feel a bit more comfortable. I started in April and have repeated a few weeks. I couldn't even run for 45 seconds to begin with so don't worry, in time, it will get more comfortable and then you'll really start to feel like a runner!

Good luck and hugely well done for sticking with it!

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Thank you for the inspiration and advice! I get paid next month so i shall take the plunge then! I suppose itll just be the money i could have spent in a gym but havent, i exercise for free! Ill be in aberdeen once i can afford trainers so will have to research where to go! :)

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Always stretch before (wish I had remembered on my last run). I don't stretch after but it certainly won't do any harm. That should help the cramps.

As for the numbness, it may be a pinching of a nerve (sciatic) and may relate to your back. Beware of your posture. I have a habit, that I am getting out of, of looking at the ground and it twinges my back. Try looking ahead, it makes it easier to "run" too

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This is where im confused 🙈 some people are telling me not to stretch before and other saying do it. I think im going to give it a go because something needs to change otherwise im scared the pain will get worse. That is true, i found myself looking down a lot yesterday as i felt self concious and aware of myself so ill try keep my head ip tomorrow and stretch and see if i have any difference! Thank you :)

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Congrats!!

Remember, " You don't have to be great to start, but you do have to start to be great"😀😀😀

It takes a real star to complete Week 1🌟🌟🌟🌟. Your job now is to remember to shine, even when it's cloudy 👏🏼👏🏼👏🏼👏🏼😀🏃🏼‍♀️🥇🌟

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Thank you! Im actually looking forward to tomorrow! To take all the advice and better my run!

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Only week 1 run 3? That's 3 runs into the programme. You're doing great! Stretching AFTER your run really really helps. Likewise massaging your calves at every opportunity. I had exactly the same problems with pins and needles in one of my feet and found that looser lacing helped enormously. I did eventually have gait analysis (that was an experience)😂 and got myself some more suitable running shoes and they did make ano amazing difference too.

Another thing that helps with the cramping is making sure you're really well hydrated and running slower. I know you'll say "I can't possible go any slower!". I said the same, but you really can and starting off slower than slow McSlow will ease those complaining muscles into the run.

Slow and steady. You will be fine. You're doing just great and the more you do, the more you'll improve. Have fun😊

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Thank you! Im going to try all the advice i have been given and will see how tomorrow goes. I am really bad with keepimg hydrated and i dont drink much at all. Its a real problem of mine. I think i had two glasses all day yesterday so maybe thats why im in pain. Looking forward to tomorrow. Thank you! :)

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It does sound as if you have really tight calf muscles. Rather than stretching beforehand, try giving them a good massage (if you have a foam roller, this would be ideal - if not give them a really good rub, starting at your ankles and moving up your leg - against the blood flow - hard enough that uou can really feel it in your muscles). That should help. :)

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Ill try that tonight! Thank you :)

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