NO WAY can I increase from 3 mins to please!! πŸ˜•

Hi everyone

I've just completed W3R3 - I did it but the 3 minute runs were at the absolute limit of what I could do. I'm not exaggerating πŸ˜•

Having had a sneak peek at what W4 brings I know that I can not run continuously for 5 minutes. Rather than try and fail, should I repeat W3 in the hope that my stamina increased before W4?

I'm a 47 year old, somewhat overweight first time runner...

Enjoying the programme and feel ridiculously chuffed with myself for sticking to it πŸ™‚


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70 Replies

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  • You can do it. Believe in yourself and go at a slow and steady pace. I find music keeps me going

  • I thought so to. (56years old, 3 stone overweight and never ran). Don't look ahead just one step at a time. So run the 3 mins like you have and then just do one more step...... You will likely surprise yourself and really feel chuffed.

    btw "fail" is not allowed, an incomplete run is a practice.

  • If you tell yourself that you can't do something, then you will not be able to do it. Once you open your mind to the possibility you free yourself from negativity and your potential is unlimited.

    If you don't complete a run then you simply repeat it until your body is capable of doing have failed nothing. That is how runners train.

    Belief is the key.

  • Try W4R1 and if it doesn't happen, what have you lost? Just keep trying! And it might be you repeat a run or two, what's the big deal?! 3/4 of the challenge is mental, believe me.

    If you had told me six weeks ago I would have just completed W9R2 on the morning of 21st July, I would have laughed at you. But I have. This programme works, you just have to keep that pace slow and keep getting out there... I know you can do this.

  • Go you! One more run till we start throwing confetti at you πŸ‘

  • I would give it a go, you have nothing at all to lose by trying. I have gone out for many an increased distance run and surprised myself. As well as the body training you are going through here there is also a mental one.

  • Honestly you can do it.

    I found looking ahead at the weeks made things more daunting and seemed impossible but it really isn't. You can do it!

  • I had my doubts when I began the programme too. I'm 47 and overweight too, the 3 minutes to 5 minutes jump seemed like a monumental increase. Make sure the pace is comfortable, if you go quicker than you walk then technically you're jogging. The programme builds your stamina both physically and mentally, if you stick too it then you'll be fine. I would suggest there is no major rush to get to make the jump forward, repeat it if you're confidence isn't quite there and let your body and mind adapt to the big change. I've just completed week 6 and am finding it a mightily rewarding experience. Good luck to you.

  • "Whether you think you can, or you think you can't -- you're right."

    - Henry Ford

  • Love it!

  • So true!

  • Yes! you can! You have to change your mindset and push on through it, a lot of us have been there, onwards and upwards!😊

  • Think of it as a hurdle to get over if you don't try you will never know what you can achieve self belief is a wonderful thing you are more than capable you just have to believe.

  • Yes you can run for 5 minutes...why not?

    Take the ridiculously chuffed, ( but well deserved) feeling, keep it in your head.. and when you go out, slow and really , really steady..just use it...:)

    Roosevelt said, " Believe you can and you are halfway there.."

    I would add....Know you can, and you are there:)

  • Just have a go at it rather than be a defeatist, then you can say you at least tried πŸ’ͺπŸƒβ€β™€οΈβœ”οΈπŸ‘

  • I felt like that last week now today I've just done 20mins so surprised

    You can do it don't think of the whole 5 mins do the 3 and just try and keep going you will make it

  • If you're in the U.K. the really hot humid weather has not been helpful to any of us. If you managed to run 3 minutes in it you've done really well.

    Maybe try and get out at a different time of day when it is cooler? Make sure you've had a drink of water before you go out and just 'go'. If you listen to music while doing your runs maybe pick a track that lasts for 5 minutes and promise yourself you'll run to the end of it, taking really short steps.

    Of course you can repeat last week's runs if you need to. But you can also try the 5 minutes and call it a practice run if you don't make it. I bet you can though!

  • That's a great idea about the 5 minute track - I will try that! πŸ‘πŸ»πŸ˜€

    And yes, I have been running in this ridiculous heat!!

    Thank you 😊

  • It is definitely easier on your body if you can manage to get up early, next best is running late in the evening.

  • It is really up to you but I would say push yourself! It is so easy to tell yourself that you can't do it ( I am very guilty of this myself) but if you never try you will never know.

    Try to think positively about it, tell yourself you can and you will amazed at what you can achieve.

    You have nothing to lose by going for it! The worst that could happen is that you have to repeat it and that is no crime at all :)

    You CAN do this!

  • Thank you everyone for such great encouragement!!

    Nothing ventured, nothing gained. I will give it a try and report back. Thanks y'all 😊 Xx

  • I had two practice runs when I started Week 9. You've come this far, you know you can do this so, even if you have a couple of practice runs, they still count - you're still running and you're still improving your fitness. It doesn't matter how many practice runs it takes - what matters is that you keep trying and you will definitely get there.

  • Trust the program it really does work. As Oldfloss says "slow and steady". She also gave me a bit of advice which was not to look at the next week but concentrate on the week I was on.

  • Totally agree, NEVER look ahead to the following run, just do it!

  • Well done on completing week 3. Have a go at week 4 you may surprise yourself just like everyone else who has either completed or is doing the programme. It also doesn't matter how many weeks it takes to complete 6 of us in the family took longer than the 9 weeks but we have all managed it even me 57, two stone overweight and had a brain tumour removed last year, completed just before Christmas last year.

  • are amazing

  • It took me 2 weeks to get off week one , and 2 MONTHS to get off week 2 😩 half of it was mental block , it had to be . If you have completed a week , move on to the next and just keep chipping away at it , it doesn't matter how many weeks it takes you or how many attempts , just don't give up !

  • Sounds like me!!!!!! πŸ˜‰

  • Just believe in yourself.

    I was the same very recently. I got to week 4 with no problems but couldn't see how I would make the jump.

    First 5 minute run I failed. The second 5 minute run of day 1 I kept going and managed to finish it. I was so annoyed that I had given in so easily and then only a few minutes later managed to run for 5 minutes.

    After proving to myself I could sustain a 5 minute run the next 3 run days were a success and last night I completed week 5, day 1 which is 3 lots of 5 minutes.

    Mind over matter!!

  • Go for it. You can do this. Just take it slowly. Many of us feel daunted by the next challenge but believe in yourself and say ' I am running for 5 mins today' rather than 'I don't think I can '. Let us know how you get on

  • I'm at the same point and having the same thoughts! Added to which, I am going away for a few days so will have four non running days break = loss of momentum. I am contemplating a repeat week 3 run early Sunday before I go just to keep my mind on track. I know my problem is more with my mind than my legs and lungs.

  • Thank you! You've all been brilliant. I have downloaded a bunch of 5 minute songs, which was fun in itself πŸ˜€

    I'm now actually looking forward to the run to see how I get on πŸ‘πŸ»

    Anyone know any 10 minute songs just for future reference?! πŸ˜…πŸ˜†


  • There must be some 12" 1980s singles that go on that long - just need to find them! I'm thinking Blue Monday by New Order maybe. That always seemed to go on and on and on and on. For you younger runners, I am referring to when music came on black vinyl discs of different sizes and you had to ask your parents' permission to use their record player to listen to it...

  • Blue Monday, oh what a track that was!

  • Yes you can! I thought the same and I have graduated this morning! Always believe you can and you will! Good luck!

  • Great stuff. Give it a go and see how you get on, if you need to go back, no problem. I have been amazed when I have made the leap every week. You can do it.

  • You can definitely do this! I am 44, slightly overweight and never ran before. I struggled big time with the 3 minutes and the 5 minutes nearly killed me the first time and felt a bit disheartened, but all the way i kept telling myself to try the first on of the next week and if it is too much, I'll do the previous week again. So far I haven't needed to and just completed week 6 (25mins running!!!!!!!). Week 1 i struggled to just do a minute-but about where you are someone told me about a breathing trick which has been a life saver-they said to breath in twice each time. It sounds mad, but once i got the hang of it, it got my breathing under control and i stopped panicking and struggling to get air in. Someone else said to breath out twice too, but not mastered that one. Take it at your own pace and trust in the programme. Each week i looked ahead and thought no way, but each week i have just been determined to do it and somehow got through-i am NOT quick, but it feels amazing to get this far. I would never have believed it if someone had said 6 weeks ago that I'd be able to run for 25mins. Go for it and post to celebrate when you finish each one :-)

  • Yes you can! (and with everyone telling you this, what can possibly go wrong?). Get some boogie music on and go for it, after all, if the gremlins get you this time, it's just a practice run and the next session will be better.

    Just for the record, I'm 47 too and a little overweight. I thought I hated running and some of those first few weeks' sessions were really tough. But the sense of achievement at each new milestone (and the support of this forum) kept me going. I graduated a month ago, and can now keep running for about 36 mins (which is as long as it takes me to run 5k right now :-))

  • That's brilliant - well done 😊 And thank you xx

  • Wow thats fab I'm looking forward to when i can do that 😁 ive just finished week3 run 3 x

  • One step at a time... Im starting Week 4 on Tuesday myself so I can totally relate to the trepidation. Set your eyes on a short distance landmark, and keep going til you u reach it, then set another one further on, and keep going til your coach tells you to stop! That's what helped me through so far. We can do this!!!

  • We can! Mine is scheduled for tomorrow (Sunday). I'll post again to let you know if I manage it πŸ‘πŸ»πŸ˜ŠπŸ˜… xx

  • How did you get on? X

  • I do that too starting my week 4 on Wednesday should be Tuesday but don't think I'll manage it after walking up snowdon..... im going to amaze my self if i do make it all the way to the top 😊

  • One foot in front of the other, slowly and steadily at your own pace. Observe the Rest days, forget about '5' and '9' and you too will graduate. :) Hardly any of us get there 'on time' and 'with distance' anyway :) And we did not have a Survey about it but i bet any money most of us at least felt mounting dread as the times grew :)

    You have made it this far, unless something absolutely drastic happens you can make it all the way :) Might not be as 'quick' as you like or as 'elegantly' - but you CAN run - you have proved that already :) now it's just a question of time and patience and running sensibly :)

    Read the early posts of Graduates - we were all filled with 'fear and trembling' at some point or another on our journey :)

    Wishing you many of the happy miles you have in your future should you so chose to pursue them slowly and steadily :)

  • Thank you πŸ‘πŸ» I think I possibly need to 'slow down' my actual running... I'll try that tomorrow too 😊

  • One day, in a somewhat fanciful mood I decided I was going to run as slow as humanly possible without actually breaking into a 'walking' step.

    It's a HECK of a lot harder to do that than it sounds :)

    Anyway - I had a lot of fun with it and certainly a sense of astonishment when I saw my 'slow' time was actually a lot 'faster' than I would ever have guessed :)

    'slow' though does not just mean 'not' fast' in practice- it helps you focus more on what is actually going on with your body, how you might be over tensing muscles, straining your back or neck, running with too long a stride for comfort etc.. :)

    There is a lot that goes on when you are running and even still after a year I make new discoveries about what helps and does not help. :) Main thing though is to keep it all fun on at least SOME level - otherwise its just sself punishment and that does no good at all :)

  • Thank you - again 😊

    Great advice and yes, I do get what you mean when you say it's actually more difficult to run 'slowly' πŸ˜…

    Roll on tomorrow now - I'm looking forward to my run πŸ‘πŸ»πŸ˜Š

  • And remember -we may run on our own 'round here, but we never run alone ;)

  • Believe and you will. Take your time and run through your worry. Even if you are walking part of, it just try. You've got this.


    I've only gone and done it βœ…πŸ€—πŸ˜Ž

    And it was nowhere near as bad as I thought.

    So grateful for all your encouragement and advice. 5 minute tracks definitely helped and the breathe in twice thing 😳seemed to work too.

    I am a very happy bunny - I've got this!

    Thanks all xx

  • Haha well there you go! You surprised yourselfπŸ˜€ and you'll keep doing it too. Keep on truckin'!!

  • Well don't stay we didn't tell you so! Seriously - well done 😊. And remember to bottle that feeling for the next time you doubt yourself.

  • Well done πŸŽ‰

  • Brilliant well done!

  • Well done ☺

  • Well done!!! See, half of this is psychological. Congrats on 5 mins - it's a great achievement.

  • I used to be quite fit and run a lot, then got a kid and over ten years became a couch potato and overweight. When I started this program I really struggled and have just completed week 4. As I did this week, something came back to me. I was once told by someone to really blow out the breath as you exhale - they said the inhale "will take care of itself." I've found with these longer runs, you really need to get your breathing in to a comfortable rhythm. I think Laura mentions it in one of the earlier podcasts about counting paces and breathing but I find if I really blow out the breath on every fourth left or right footfall (eighth pace), then my breathing really starts to "take care of itself." Worth a try as you move forward and congrats on completing the 5 min run.

  • OK, so while running week 5 run 1 last night, I realized I had given you incorrect information, I blow out my breath on every fourth footfall, so every second left or right footfall, depending on how my rhythm settles in. So it's 1-2-3-blow (exhale), 1-2-3-blow. However, I've been doing some research on breathing rhythms and it seems this could be a bad example to follow. This article makes for some interesting reading:

  • I am on week2, run 2 and I finished, but barely. I know that the 3 minute runs next week are going to be really hard on me, and I am already planning on doing week 3 at least twice. I am in no hurry to complete this, I already did week 1 twice, and that made week 2 possible! I am 43, overweight by a LOT and pretty much sedentary and work a desk job, so I knew it would take me awhile, but it is worth it. There is no 'shame' in repeating a week

  • Absolutely keep repeating until you are comfortable with the level you are on before moving to the next week. I am 58 and a new runner, just completed C25k and it took me many more weeks than it should have. Last Saurday I did my first Parkrun, I'm so pleased with myself and you will get there too, have patience and pace yourself.

  • At first, I had huge problems with 1:30 minutes, like afterwards I stopped for breath. Then I struggled a lot with 3, then with 5 and after that I thought I had reached my pinnacle on 8 minutes, and not just 8 minutes but 2x8 minutes. Same week, I did 20 minutes.

    Not sure where this came from, but I am smiling so much and I am so proud of myself.

    There is no failure in redoing a day, there is only one failure, quitting. This program is just based on averages, some people take 2 days at once, some have no problems and others struggle a lot.

    But if an office code monkey like myself can finish week 5 and then just do the 2 days in week 6 (day 3 is tomorrow) and no ambulance was needed, I would love to think that anyone can. It just takes effort, willpower and sore legs to do this. Just repeat as often as you want.

    When I finished my 2x8 minutes, I was ecstatic, almost euphoric, I wan't everyone to feel like this, it is so worth being sore tomorrow.

  • That sounds amazing! Well done you πŸ˜ŠπŸ‘πŸ»

  • "Limitations are 90% mental the other 10% is all in your head." - Ray Zahab.

  • I've just completed Run 1 Week 4 - and it was my first solo run without my 14 year old son for moral support! He was off playing football but i had to do it today after missing days while away from home. Mind you, I did do the Cheddar Gorge walk on Monday which was REALLY TOUGH!

  • When you ran W1R1, did you believe that you would ever be able to run for three minutes? Probably not, but you did.. :) You've completed three weeks, so don't doubt yourself now after all your hard work! Slow down. Forget the numbers, and run until Laura tells you to stop - and split it into small portions. "To that lamp post", "to that car", "to that lady with her dog", and congratulate yourself each time. You will have finished before you know it.

  • I honestly didn't think I'd be able to do it today but take it slow and easy and you'll surprise yourself. There's no harm in pulling your speed back to 'barely jogging' if after doing the run you think you could do more then try to go a little faster on the next run.

    You can totally do this.

  • We've ALL been there and all of us on here who have graduated have lived to tell the tell, so don't be put off.

  • I bet you anything you can do it! Believe in yourself and the program. 8 weeks ago I couldn't run for a minute and now I'm doing 28. I find it helps if I Just put some good music on and concentrate on my breathing, at least to start with so I get a good rhythm going. You'll be amazed how quickly 5 mins will pass. Good luck πŸ‘

  • Well done! We knew you could nail it πŸ˜ƒπŸƒβ€β™€οΈβœ”οΈπŸ’ͺπŸ‘

    I was running to a track yesterday that lasted seemingly ages. A belter too!

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