What made you start C25K?: Afternoon all. I'm... - Couch to 5K

Couch to 5K
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What made you start C25K?


Afternoon all.

I'm interested in what has made you leave the "couch" and aim for the 5k?

For me, it's vanity (or maybe, was vanity. I'm enjoying c25k more than I thought). I lost 5 stone a few years ago but after going away on one of those all inclusive holidays 2 years ago I put about half a stone on. I never really got rid of the weight and have gained more since (although not all that I lost thankfully). I hate exercise with a passion and did a home DVD half heartedly on and off up until I started c25k.

I didn't start this for the health benefits but just wanted to look better. When I mentioned to a friend that I was going to try running, she actually laughed! I was going to give c25k a try anyway but for me that was just what I needed to make sure I started the programme. To be fair, she has lived with my attitude to exercise for almost 10 years but it was still a little hurtful that it was a laughing matter!

So, here I am. 2 runs in to week 4 and feeling determined to graduate, regardless of how long it takes me. Who's laughing now?! :-D

It hasn't really aided the weight loss as much as I'd hoped but I'm back on weightwatchers and let's face it, c25k won't be making things worse. Exercise and a good diet is what everyone recommends and that's just what I'm doing.

What's your story?

19 Replies

For me it was looking 50 in the eye and deciding that I had to start doing more exercise! (Use it or lose it, I guess!). Also, I had my kids in my thirties so as a 'mature' mum, felt I needed to put a bit more effort in to looking after myself so that I am around for as long as possible, when they have their own families etc. Last, and by no means least, I had run many years ago and knew it was something I had loved and that it would be a great tool for managing my stress and anxiety. So fast forward two years - with many runs, including my first half marathon now behind me (if I can, anyone can😮) C25K ticked all these boxes and more! Keep going, you won't regret the changes it will bring about! Good luck!🙂

snack_shackGraduate in reply to Sandraj39

What a great story. A half marathon too? I am in awe. I hope to get to that kind of fitness and stamina at some point in the future. You're an inspiration.

Sandraj39Ambassador in reply to snack_shack

..no, just someone who decided to make a change and luckily found C25K and this forum! Could not have done it without the wonderful support and advice here, which is why, I think, so many of us stick around to support others on the journey. 🙂


For me it was the vague sense I should get more exercise. I am somewhat older than you and aware that mid 50s is the point in life where bits start to fall off if you are not careful. Used to be really fit from cycling. Not any more.

Why running when my previous attitude was if walking isn't fast enough for you get a bike? Park run. In fact it is really part of my plan to meet more people who live near me. Not easy when you commute into central London every day. The fitness bit is just a bonus. But a good one.

I actually wanted to lose weight. I don't think I have, because my diet isn't great. I continue though because I like the sense of achievement.

I have a hobby, now. I like breaking through the mental challenges of having to change into my running gear and getting out there, or going out in the rain when I would rather be at home, slobbing out on the couch.


I started primarily for my mental health.

I have been doing yoga (only once a week!) and enjoy that, but I never get round to doing any more in the week.

I have depression, some anxiety and have lots of trouble concentrating, planning, following things through, etc. Frankly it's wrecking my life, so something HAD to be done.

Some people I know are quietly evangelical about running for mental health - saying "I concentrate so much better" or "if I don't run every few days, I go a bit mad", or just a wise-sounding "it really /helps/, you know...". Even getting outside amongst some greenery is proven to lift your mood.

So I looked into C25k ... about 2 years ago... and FINALLY started this month, using the landmark of a birthday to get going.

It's been great so far, and I think it'll mean so much to me if I can get to the end of the programme. Not just for the physical achievement, though that means a lot too and I sure need the exercise, but because it means I'll have done something where I've made a plan (or found a plan), stuck to it, and progressed and achieved something which can only be done with a bit of progress regularly and often. I wouldn't have said this with such optimism two weeks ago but I think this will really help me. Just wish I'd done it sooner - story of my life!

Hi, this is my first post.. Also I'm new on the C5k, so far I love it. I usually walk but with the running is something different, the sweat the intensity and the challenge makes every run something to look forward to... My goal is to run in a marathon and lose weight in the process.

Jancanrun in reply to lfeliz

Go you, marathon that's a heck of a target we'd all be interested to know how you get on....

Porridge stomach - that was the look not the contents. And feeling that at my age I was in danger of losing what little 'it' I had. And a husband who has clocked up 7000 km on his bike this year. Slight peer pressure...🚴🏼

I decided to buy myself a fancy watch to prove to my other half that as a teacher I easily clocked up 10000 steps a day. I found out that I was right, however, I was a definite plodder. I rarely added more than a few minutes of 'exercise' during these steps. Actually seeing it in numbers made me start to pay more attention to the heart raising bit!

I completed the program and ran the 5km race for life, but have had a couple of months off due to difficult personal circumstances, but I am back and once again- I love it 😍

After years of on and off trying to run I came across c25k and started it 5 yrs ago at 57. I live in a hilly area and that combined with trying to go too fast was what was scuppering my attempts. So slow, slow and slower got me to the end of the programme along with some tenacity. It didn't help with weight loss (a good eating plan did that) but it did help to get me toned up and my clothes fitting better. Now I can't not run and hope that lasts for a very long time. No plans for a marathon but I'm no stranger to half marathon distance.

davidhwynnGraduate in reply to AnnieW55

I felt that despite trying (& slowly suceeding) to lose weight and going to the gym it wasn't really pushing me enough. I tried a swimming course and decided that it wasn't for me, even though I swim tolerably well. At my age of 71 last Dcemeber I found C25K, took months and several attempts at the programme to get to the end. Despite all manner of health issues I got medically cleared and I am ecstatic that I can actually still do it. Like AnnieW55 I now can't not run. I'm the slowest snail plodding along, but today was nearly 8K of my personal jogging heaven. I now mix "me" time (like today) with one evening at a local running club and Saturday Parkrun. My running club keep trying to get me to join them on Mondays but I sort of protect Mondays just to jog along for me! Short term target for me is much less ambitious, I'd like to speed up a bit .....


I decided at nearly 60 it was way past time to break the family curse of bad genes and to be there for my sons

I'm loving everyone's stories and why you all started to run.

I am what you would call a yoyo exerciser. I have gone through spells of going to a gym or taking up a sport for a while. I have always been active but in the last few years after becoming a dad and getting a dog finding the time to do anything is pretty hard.

We moved house last year and with our new life insurance we got half price membership of the local virgin active gym. I loved the place but only went a handful of times in the space of a whole year. At nearly £60 per month I needed to cancel it and find something cheaper.

I have also just turned 40 and a few people have mentioned my growing belly. I'm not really overweight but I do like my food and have always eaten what I wanted. My wife is pregnant with our second child and my lovely 3 year old daughter thinks I have a baby in my tummy too(in a very loving a cute way).

I considered getting into biking but running seemed like the perfect fit. I can do it straight from my front door, didn't need any more kit, can take the dog.

The only downside is I've never really liked running much but think I'm on the verge of being a convert.


We had a sponsored 5k at the school I work at last month. Over 1000 students and loads of staff did it but I didn't feel fit enough to run. So, out of shame and dented pride I decided to take on couch to 5k over this summer holiday: next sports day I want to be running alongside the students and my colleagues and not feeling left out on the sidelines. I'm 47 and quite a late mum - my youngest is 8 - and I want to be able to keep up with him in the park! Also, my dad, who is in his 70s has run several marathons in the last 15 years or so. I'd like to be the person in our family who takes on the mantle of distance running as his legs begin to prefer shorter stretches.


For me, it was a son who pushed me off the couch. I told him I couldn't do it--that I was too old, but he said, "It says it's for EVERYONE." I asked my doctor and she said, "Well, it's a bit aggressive for someone aged 70, so just take it easy if it gets too rough." Meantime, my son was railing and ranting about this and kept on shoving. Now here I am, a graduate, and I couldn't feel better about achieving this. Now I'm telling all my friends about this program. Funny thing, my knees and feet actually feel better than before I started running. Before I started running they were hurting.

It was a drunken conversation with my close friends that we decided to try each others sports, The 1st challenge was running a 5K and that got me off my butt. I've not found it keeps my mental health in check and my confidence has increased.

I completed the 5k and also completed a 10K, now I'm going for a half marathon!


each year i set myself a challenge or challenges to prove to myself that i can conquer any fears I may have, earlier this year i set myself the challenge of doing the zipworld "velocity" challenge for guide dogs cymru, look it up on you tuble, i have a fear of heights and yes i did it. Even earlier this year myself, my wife and my daughter had been to Chester just after the annual half marathon had taken place, I can remember thinking at the time I wonder what that would be like (why oh why you foolish boy), I had run a charity 5k a few years ago (was more like a 3 and a bit k due to weather) called a glow run but nothing in this magnitude, hell I hadn't run/jogged/wombled for a few years anyway ... i digress ... I can remember going home and thinking to myself can i with enough training be ready for something like a half marathon in 2018, and after posting the question on my fb feed a very good friend of mine (well he was ... lol ... still is ) said if i put my mind to it i can achieve anything.

This is why I started the c25k program 9 weeks ago to kickstart the training i need to even get out of the starting gate. Having graduated yesterday i feel healthier and more confident in myself and i cannot wait to progress this further. Don't get me wrong it was tough and it will still be tough but what is life without a challenge

steve p aka the womble jogger

Just coming up to my 58th birthday and thinking if I'm going to try I'd better start soon.

A diabetes diagnosis so excercise helps to keep the blood sugars in check.

And finally for motivation watching my son compete in Ironman triathlon which requires huge training and dedication. But whatever about seeing my fit young man in his 30s racing , i am blown away seeing women a lot older than me taking 15 or 16 hours to finish a race and they never give up. .

So no excuse for me not to soon be able to manage a 5k park run.

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