It's hard!! : I did W1R3 today and I seriously... - Couch to 5K

Couch to 5K

109,640 members141,656 posts

It's hard!!


I did W1R3 today and I seriously can't believe I'll ever get to the end of this and manage 5k! I'm 54 and I hate running but love walking! I have been worried by the recent TV health programmes so thought I'd give it a go! I am really determined to be fitter by Christmas. If I can manage it, it really will be a case of almost anyone can! Found week 1 really tough but think I could just about manage week2 if I slowed down. Anyone else felt this worried at the end of week 1 and actually got to week 7? Or further?

15 Replies

I love walking but like you thought I needed to up my exercise levels. I really didn't enjoy Wk1 I was gasping for breath at the end of the 60 second running sections and couldn't really see how I was ever going to manage 90 seconds in Wk2 let alone ever finish the programme. Everything ankles,knees and groin ached and I thought my lungs would burst.

Yesterday I completed Wk5 R1 and loved it - I actually felt quite comfy running 5 minutes at a stretch and am EXCITED to seeing if I can manage 8 minutes in the next run.

People on here will tell you the programme works and it does - I can't believe how much fitter I feel after just a month and that in itself becomes a motivation.

I hated cross country at school and though I've always liked walking couldn't understand why people would run as a a 'hobby' - however on a lovely sunny autumn morning yesterday I got it.

The turning point for me was around the end of Wk3 when I realised nothing was aching anymore and I didn't feel like I was going to die at the end of each running section.

Keep going!!! And keep posting to let us know how you're getting on.

Or10 in reply to DebJogsOn

Oh thank you for the encourage ment. Really needed that. 👍 well done to get to week 5 and even more week 7 I'll be so happy to get to that!

RenmurewGraduate in reply to DebJogsOn

I can only add a big +1 to this reply. I am at the same stage as Fitter40s and completed w5r1 yesterday and am looking forward to run 2 but felt exactly as you describe after week 1. I ran the first week in my garden because I didnt want to have to call home if I gave up. I am amazed how much I've achieved so far and have every reason to believe you will too. After all we were you just 4 short weeks ago. Keep going and above all believe in yourself. You are doing great 👏


Oh so many people!! Just keep it slow! I did and made it past week 7 to graduate last week. You can do it!


Felt exactly the same as you at the beginning and this morning I completed WK8R1!!

Have faith in this program, trust this program, embrace this program and you'll be amazed at what you can achieve.

Keep posting here and you'll receive all the encouragement and good vibes that you could possibly need.

Word of advice-don't look too far ahead in the program as it can be quite daunting. Instead concentrate on the run that you have next, take it slow and steady and say to yourself "I can run so I will run"

Good luck for the future runs and keep coming back here to let us know how you get on 🤗

Or10 in reply to Kimchoc08


Done you. 🎉Good advice thank u . Yes I keep looking ahead and thinking I'll

Never be able to do it! I'll stop doing that!

Oh yes- I certanly did quetion my ability, mentally and physically to continue after week 1 - I found it so challenging, in fact I recal doing a fourth repeat run. Taking advice from this forum, I slowed right down and ensured I was breathing steadily and deeply. I am the same age as you and didn't complete regular exercise prior to c25k - and now I am halfway through w6! Its still physically challenging, however I have successfully weeks to bolster my resolve and this forum to keep me mentally traveling in a positive direction. In hindsight for me wk1 was the toughest it's been - keep going the rewards are huge :-)

Or10 in reply to BeccaMM


Done. That's encouraging thanks


You don't need to run 5K...just run for the 30 minute runs :)

There are so many posts about this...just slow down and then slow down more :)

Walk.... walk as much as you like ... it is great... try the Walking for Heath forum maybe if you think it might suit you better... or, as well as:)

but.. we would love to have you here too. This is doable... if you follow each week very slowly and steadily..:)

Many folk found the first weeks almost impossible, but by slowing right down and relaxing into it.. they are still here or Graduated!

Keep posting, ask any questions you like.. the support is incredible....and take it from The Original Grey Snail.. who started at 65 and is now up to running for 10K....two years on... this works and you will do it:)


I'll tell you a secret ... week one is the hardest week by a mile. You'll be amazed how much you improve week by week. The plan really does work.

I've just finished week 7 this morning and can't believe I can run for 25 minutes non stop. Next week it's 28 and I'm already looking forward to it.

Slow down, slow down again, and a bit more, and you'll get there.


Ahh, weak 1..and that’s not a spelling mistake...I say weak because this is when we realise how weak we actually are & feel...ready to pack it all in & doing exactly what you’re doing, questioning ourselves. The answer to your question is yes, absolutely yes, most people on here have felt exactly how you do. You have mentioned that you ought to slow down for week 2..that’s the key to this...start off slowly, then slower still, the slower the better...don’t worry about breathing, just find a pace you’re comfortable with & stick to it...

You can do back on some people’s posts from their earlier weeks & you’ll see...the programme will be a challenge at times but stick with it & weak 1 will soon be a distant memory 🏃🏼‍♀️👍🏻


Well done, you have taken a very important step towards taking control of your fitness and health outcomes.

Your situation is no different to that of countless thousands of people who have transformed their lives for the better. DebJogsOn has given you a great example of how starting to exercise can change your outlook. Many of us looked on running as a necessary chore to maintain fitness........until we actually did it and became running junkies.

C25k is a great training plan which you can't fail, unless you stop trying. Any run you don't complete, you simply repeat, then move on. Results show in improved recovery times within the first couple of weeks. It is hard and it will remain hard until you reach the end of the programme, when you can ease off the weekly increase in pressure and really enjoy your newly won ability to run for thirty minutes.......You will get there.

This forum is your secret weapon. We will advise, console, chivvy and cheer you if you keep us posted with your progress.

Take it slow and enjoy your journey.


I found week 1 REALLY hard. Flopped on the sofa as soon as I'd finished and was sweating so much it looked like I was melting. Bright red in the face.... finished week 8 the other day by inadvertently running up a coastal hill! Unbelievable! The programme gets your body ready for each run but it's really also a mental thing - you have to get your head in a positive place and that is what will make the difference. I'm a few years older than you, by the way, and, like you, had previously done no exercise since school - none, nada, zilch..... you CAN do it! Go slow and then go slower until you find your rhythm. You'll get there.


We all find it hard, you are definitely not alone, but yes I am about to start week 8 now and it's still hard but so worth it when you finish. Slow is good, I got lapped in the park yesterday lol but you know what I don't care because I still kept going and finished and so will you. Good Luck, Keep Going, YOU CAN DO IT ;)

It's a great plan and you can do it. Just slow, steady and take your rest days 👍

You may also like...