Couch to 5K
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OK newbies and doubters, here's a statistical pep talk!!

I like to think that I'm quite resistant to cold weather, granted my hands do get very cold very quickly, but other than that I'm of fairly hardy stock. The real test of this is 5 o'clock on a late November morning, by late I mean the 30th i.e. today, when the weather bods have predicted that polar bears will be wandering the streets of East Anglia looking for bloody stupid idiots in lycra shorts and trainers. Well they didn't catch me this time, luckily the seals got in the way. 10 minutes after getting home, having completed a steady and very satisfying 5k, the skies opened up and within half an hour an inch of snow covered the dawn landscape.

The point of the guff above is that early morning running, whatever the weather, is second nature and almost non-negotiable. A further point to add to this is that only 6 months ago, well 5 and a half but who's counting?, I would've stayed in bed and laughed at the prospect of getting up and running. Even a bright sunny early June morning wouldn't have tempted me. The C25K programme is such a brilliant thing, I've said it endlessly, that once it gets it's hooks into you then they're almost impossible to extract. The subtle conditioning of the mind is such that 3 and a half months after graduation (again who's counting?!), I'm still up early 3 times a week to run for a minimum of 30 minutes. One steady paced 5 or 6k, a gentle(ish) 7 or 8 k and a faster paced 5k parkrun (on Saturdays). I've completed 12 parkruns with 5 of those being under 30 minutes and one dead on 30. 10k has been bagged twice with the quickest at 1 hr 11 m 6 secs.

My distances have increased over the course of the last 3 months. In September my total was 71.55k, October 78.92k and after today's run I've finished November on 90.60k. The distances will increase for the next few months as I train up for a half marathon in April.

Now, the above isn't a tub thumping 'hey look at me and what I've done' exercise. I've written all of this as proof to newbies and to those of you who doubt what the C25K programme can achieve. At the beginning of June I had never run for fitness or fun EVER, now I can't think of a time when running won't be a regular part of my life. My mental and physical well being has improved immeasurably. People ask me about what I've done to change my look so much. Other than dietary stuff I extoll the virtues of this fantastic programme and the wonderful support network which this forum provides, a true running family.

22 Replies
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+++ ^^^what lardofale says. ^^^

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That is fantastic, well done! All those miles in such a short space of time! And I really enjoyed your pep talk thank you 😊

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Enjoyed that. I was in the same position a few months ago and am really enjoying it now. I only graduated last week but have done 3 steady 5k runs in the fresh air and across the muddy fields near where I live since then. This afternoon I thought I was carrying half of Hertfordshire on my shoes. But seriously though this is very therapeutic and is ( almost) free health insurance!

So to those struggling to run even a little bit. WE HAVE ALL BEEN THERE TOO and the secret seems to be to take it steady, ignore the inner doubting voice and frequently look back and say " What me? Ran for 3 mins, 5 mins, 10 mins, 20 mins 30 mins. Surely not! Oh yes you did! Above all enjoy it!

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I really agree John.. I wrote this post a year ago...

healthunlocked.com/couchto5...

We have all been there and are travelling this fantastic journey together:)

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Well, what a well written and thoughtful post. Quite moving. I am enjoying just being out. I take a watch ( had to buy the tech) so I can run to more or less constant heart rate. Like you I'm exploring routes that I've walked many times. They are familiar in one way and different in another. Had to laugh when you said you got to nearly 9k without really noticing!

Take care and see you running in cyberspace!

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Like I tell folk.. relax and run..it evolves:)

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What a great post you write beautifully. 👍

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Ditto big time, it truly has been life changing.

!0k runs from the man that couldn't run for a minute, training for a half marathon (or will be but mine's not until June)

Planning my week around running, what's happened to me, well for a start I'm 2 stone lighter, my blood pressure is now getting down into the normal band (without medication), I'm eating better and all round feeling good with myself.

All down to c25k and the fantastic support network (Good old Flossy)

Should also mention making new friends, yep Lardofale this place is life changing

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True.. so true ...the friendships are one of the best bits...:)

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Spot on... it really is quite life changing if that's what you want it to be.

I can't imagine not running and now I'm investigating what do I have to do to run every day like juju...

I think maybe drop 30 years... but in the absence of that I'll keep mixing it up and getting out there, exactly like you do...

I also now need to sneak a peek at my monthly kilometres - hadn't thought to look at those...

Lovely post

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"Hear Hear"..!!

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Great post....stay warm and avoid those Polar bears.... we need folk like you, to inspire the Newbies:)

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Well done. Will be getting my morning run in a 5am tomorrow, in my quest to be fit for a HM next march also. Like you I wouldn't have even contemplated this last year!!

C25K should be prescribed by the NHS!

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I second that emotion Who are we

What have we become 🙂

A lot hardier 💪😃

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Wonderful post, totally agree with what's been said. 6 months ago I wouldn't have dreamed of running for 30 mins a couple of times a week but look at me now! I've completed one virtual 5K and am about to do another this weekend. I've only lost half a stone but more importantly I feel more confident and I'm sleeping better. To all newbies I'd say keep going! There will be struggles but come the end of the 9 weeks you will be addicted! Keep running everyone 😀

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Well done you! Lovely post.

I'm a total convert too and agree with all you say.

Keep those hands warm, happy running!

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Thats fantastic...i am addicted at week 4

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Couldn't agree more! Exactly the same thing happened to me, couldn't rake my arse out of bed pre c25k and now I'm up at 6am, squeezing a run in before work. We must have started at roughly the same time, but you've been far more active than me! I'm still plodding along but happy and enjoying all the 'side effects' running brings me and keen to start Juju's 10k plan v soon.

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Great post and inspirational thank You for taking the time. I feel having just graduated that this programme is a life changer l love early morning runs the peace and stillness of the day to come is very special indeed.

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Yay!! I love this post! And I love my running family,! Says it all really...all true...are you listening newbies?...stick at it, enjoy it & you’ll be writing this kind of post in a few months time...☺️☺️☺️💪🏻🏃🏻🏃🏼‍♀️😉

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Preach!!!

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Hi fellow East Anglian, just had time to read your post and you’ve made me feel really guilty lol!

I have let the weather put me off this week, 😕

Now I am definitely going to do a run tonight or tomorrow. Have been invited to play in a brass band tomorrow (outside) but I think the park run might win!

You are definitely hooked, 👍

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