Week 2 run 1, advice on running outside - Couch to 5K

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Week 2 run 1, advice on running outside

pampam profile image

I’m a newbie fawn here at this, so bear with me.

- I’ve just completed week 2 run 1 and found it hard in bits. I found by halfway, I kept looking hoping, will this end soon and then dreaming to my surprise through another 2 minute run. Strange eh? The mind versus physical ability.

However I’m running on a treadmill indoors. Can you advise me, if you think, I should be outside doing this or is it okay to keep going as I am?

I thought to finish the couch to 5k program (hopefully) and then go outside. But I see so many of you are doing this program outside.

Yes, part of it is I’m a little self conscious, plus I huff and puff and bluster at times!

I am determined to do this course, I’m just not like some of the runners I see on the street who seem to purr along.

45 Replies
John_W profile image

You're fine, carry on as you are. Plenty of us here have done the whole program on the treadmill, including me. When you're ready, go outside - simple :-)

Good luck!


pampam profile image
pampam in reply to John_W

Thanks John. That’s reassuring to know. I’ll keep plodding on- literally!

Oldfloss profile image

You are you.. not them.. you are running your way...Many, many folk have started out feeling like you.. trying to become invisible..:)

Have you checked put this post.. so much great advice here;


You run inside if you find that suits you... many folk do... but, if you do venture outside, folk are too wrapped up in their own lives to notice you. If they do they are either runners themselves..or jealous that they have not got the courage to do what you are doing...

If you are willing to try, then head out when there is a warmer pleasant day.. choose a route maybe like a park... and just try :) The worse thing that could happen is that you really don't enjoy it:)

" Be proud of you are... not worried about how others see you ".

pampam profile image
pampam in reply to Oldfloss

I very briefly and casually told a friend I had started just little running and she reacted with a pause, looked straight at me, sort of defensive and she said was unable to think of ever taking up running due to her hip operation last year. I hadn’t realised and felt bad. The first person I venture to tell and I’m apologetic. Oh dear! It happens!

I hadn’t thought if I go out for a run, maybe people will look on jealous and yes you’re so right, people are all wrapped up in their world to notice.

Yes, I could pick somewhere nice to try running outdoors and see how I get on- I honestly hadn’t thought about it that way. Thanks for that idea, so simple, but so good.

Oldfloss profile image
OldflossAdministrator in reply to pampam

Go on; we will be with you and I will be the one beside you whispering, slow and steady :)

RainbowC profile image
RainbowCGraduate in reply to Oldfloss

Floss is *very* good at keeping us company on our runs, wherever and whenever we do them. And that gentle voice encouraging you on when it’s hard, and reminding you to keep it steady and not push too much too soon, is the best encouragement I know of.

mfamilias profile image

I must go outside and try to find one of those purring runners you mention. I only see those in films :) I'd say, do whatever you are comfortable with, BUT... if self-consciousness is the reason for you not trying a run outside, try to knock that self-doubt on the head and get out there to try. Just once. I get the feeling you'd quite like to try it out. The feeling of liberty is just awesome. Running is as much about beating your own demons as it is about physical movement. We all start off feeling embarrassed, and most of us were red-faced through effort but certainly not embarrassment before we got to the end of the programme. Keep us posted!

pampam profile image
pampam in reply to mfamilias

Yes, to me, they purr honest- as they go by. Just look! Ha! They purr with healthy rosy faces and good strides. Hey, I’ve noticed and felt like cheering them on, as I’m admiring them so!

Beating my own demons is true, as I walk to the treadmill thinking I’ll not finish this run today and have to keep telling myself ‘hey, try, try, try’.

I go in an dream at times when running and that’s surprised me and it’s a lovely part of it. Other times a short run is like a long groan!

Being self conscious can be a tricky/annoying thing for me.

mfamilias profile image
mfamiliasGraduate in reply to pampam

If you can beat one demon, you can beat two. Please try outside, just once. You are just another nutter in trainers for the majority of people you see. And will you let the opinion of the rare big mouths dictate your life? Surely not. 😁

ClarriePan profile image

I did the programme about 5 years ago on a treadmill but unfortunately I didn’t enjoy it very much and I didn’t continue after I’d finished. I thought I’d try again but outside. I have just finished week 5 and I am enjoying it a lot. As someone has said everyone is different but it might be an idea to give it a go and see how you feel.

pampam profile image
pampam in reply to ClarriePan

Thanks for this, I’ll keep plodding on and head out sometime. I will pick somewhere like a lovely park.

ToniCR profile image

Do whatever you are comfortable with. I started this journey on my treadmill because I felt safe at home where no one could see me huff and puff and jiggle. But my treadmill quickly broke and if I wanted to continue, I was forced to head outside. I was terrified at first, feeling very self-conscious. But then I realized that no one was looking at me and if they were, they didn't care about what I was doing. I began to LOVE my time outside and now it's my preference. Each week as you run farther, your confidence goes up. Yes, there are runners purring along past me, but mostly there are walkers and people who are more likely impressed by the effort I'm putting in. I like to pretend they are either cheering for me, or jealous. :D

pampam profile image
pampam in reply to ToniCR

Yes, there are some of us cheering as you go by!

I know now, that at some point, I may venture out after all.

It’s realising that after all, I’m not alone, in the sweaty plodding awkwardness of it, by reading these replies and other posts.

I started a couple of years ago outside. I didn’t finish. Now I’m on week 5 indoors and enjoying it better. Like a new born chick I’ll go outside when I’m ready! 😊🐥

Ha ha! Yes, we’ll be newborn chicks! 🐥

GeorgiosA profile image

You should do whatever feels right for you. I have done both, running outside and on a treadmill, having completed the programme twice.

Just one thing: never mind the huffing and puffing, or what anybody thinks - run for yourself and shut everybody else out - this is your own road to travel and no one else gets a say (including me!)

On a side note, if you are struggling, you may find the open a bit easier, as it allows a more fine grained variation of speed than the treadmill...at least I found it easier.

Best of luck on your journey - looking forward to seeing your future posts and seeing you with a graduate badge soon!

pampam profile image
pampam in reply to GeorgiosA

Thanks for the tip about the variation of speed and your encouragement!

Love the doggy picture. So huggable!

GeorgiosA profile image
GeorgiosAGraduate in reply to pampam

You're very welcome! And thanks for the comment on Reggie's photo, it's just loves hugs!

Catbee profile image

Hi! I’ve done both for various reasons and for me a run is a run is a run! Do whatever works for you as long as you do it! I huff n puff plenty so you’re defo not the only one!

Good luck for the next run X

pampam profile image
pampam in reply to Catbee

That’s true a run is a run is a run. I’ll keep saying that to myself and get over my hang ups! And yeah, I could end running inside and outside- nothing to stop me -except me!

CitizenP profile image

I’m definitely a gasper rather than a purrer!! I love being outside, I think it helps me to complete the runs. I don’t have an inside option, but if I did I know I would just put off the run! 🙈

Just back from a very soggy W9 R1 - but apart from a few slippery bits found it great to be outside. I really don’t pay much attention to anyone else, just me in my little running bubble.

However, you must do what feels right for you. Inside/outside it’s still running 😊

pampam profile image
pampam in reply to CitizenP

Well done for finishing W9 R1- whew! I salute you. I’m back here plodding!

I like the idea of the running bubble, it sounds totally relaxing and your own time and space.

CitizenP profile image
CitizenPGraduate in reply to pampam

I’m still plodding too 🙊

Just started a few weeks ahead of you, that’s all. AND, it took me three attempts to complete Week 1!!

I also struggle a bit mentally too, especially now the runs are longer and Laura doesn’t really talk to me any more ... I miss Laura. I really enjoyed those early weeks.

Keep on keeping on 😊😊

JoP61 profile image

Well done with completing W2R1! When you say you're running indoors, do you mean your own place or a gym? Because if the latter, I can't think of anything more hellish!

Anyway, I am doing the programme outdoors - absolutely and completely embarrassed being seen running outdoors at the beginning - tried to avoid anyone else around. However, I've found that people ignore you. And running outdoors is really great.

But however you do it is fantastic. On a treadmill or outside, it doesn't matter.

Good luck with the programme, and keep posting! x

pampam profile image
pampam in reply to JoP61

Good for you, venturing outdoors. And thanks for telling me, your experience of how difficult it is for you, to run outside, due to your own feelings. It helps me to realise we’re all shy at heart.

pampam profile image
pampam in reply to JoP61

I’m running in a gym.

JoP61 profile image
JoP61Graduate in reply to pampam

You see I would hate to run in a gym because of all those superfit people making me look like an old crock! x

pampam profile image
pampam in reply to JoP61

It’s all the fashion fitness divas I see depending on when I go that’s a laugh! You’ve got to just laugh!

JoP61 profile image
JoP61Graduate in reply to pampam

That's the right attitude! 😀

pampam profile image
pampam in reply to JoP61

It’s great though the outfits, it’s like a new hobby of mine to spot the latest trend!

And who is more admiring themselves in the mirror than the other!

Still, good to see folk like themselves. And superb entertainment for me!

pampam my running gait is so ‘special’ that they couldn’t film it in the shop when I was getting my first running shoes!! I’ve NEVER ran outside in daylight and NEVER where anyone recognised me. Until now. I have a play list that makes me smile and at the end of every run I do a Rocky dance. Keep plugging away, do it in whatever way you are most at ease with. But believe me thinking about the outside is much worse than being there. Good luck and well done

pampam profile image
pampam in reply to SamanthaN

The Rocky dance - I love it! Good for you!

One day, you might end up at the actual ‘Rocky steps’ at the Philadelphia Museum of Art. Mind you, we’re all kids at heart really, and have that Rocky film scene in our imagination- we don’t need to be there.

NicolaD profile image

I'm doing it on my treadmill too Pampam! x

pampam profile image
pampam in reply to NicolaD

Thanks Nicola. Onward ho!

Hey, I too worried about being outdoors but you know what no one pays attentions. I am no way near a super runner but the runners that I do see smile in acknowledgement- its a secret code it seems that runners only smile at other runners 😀. I promise you that when you're outdoors you are focused on getting through the run and forget everything around you

pampam profile image
pampam in reply to Captain78

Like the secret code idea, now that’s an incentive to run outside to see.

Cwtch2018 profile image

Hi Ive jyst done wk4r1 on treadmill - I have only done one run outside . My hubby is doing this with me and he is all treadmill. He said he will run outside inches he's lost some weight and feels comfortable in doing so .

I am tempted to run outside more but my confidence keeps pulling me back .

So for us it's treadmill for now .

Don't feel you are doing any less because you are using treadmill - you are doing it !

Thanks, that’s good to know I’m not alone and it still counts, even if I’m doing it indoors.

Sadie-runs profile image
Sadie-runsGraduate in reply to pampam

Outdoors / indoors - whatever works for you. As an aside though, I consider myself a “runner” now, and when I see someone huffing and puffing along I want to run with them, tell them how well they are doing and how fantastic it is they are running! x

GeorgiosA profile image
GeorgiosAGraduate in reply to Sadie-runs

I feel exactly the same way, I consider myself a runner, even though I'm super slow, and still huff and puff when I try to go faster, but want to encourage everyone I see going out there and doing it, no matter how slow or difficult. It's amazing how supportive all runners are. Oh, but I smile at dogs too, not only runners ;)

I feel self conscious outside with my huge belly. So, tried the treadmill. However, I could never get the speed right. Constantly fiddling with the controls was too difficult.

Running outside is difficult for the duration of the warm-up. The moment I start running, I am too tired to worry about others :-).

If you have adjusted to the treadmill, good for you...

pampam profile image
pampam in reply to anilkumarr11

Yes, there’s bit of our bodies we don’t like!

Treadmill is ok, but I’ve decided to get to a certain level of this and then venture outdoors-that’s my excuse! I bet, you’re laughing at this flimsy excuse! I am too!

Thanks for your reply.

Nannalyn53 profile image

Of course go with how you feel, but if you are considering running outside, ask yourself ‘ how do I feel when i pass people running? ‘ the answer is probably along the lines of admiring/ envious/ impressed etc. Well that’s how they feel about you!

pampam profile image
pampam in reply to Nannalyn53

Thanks, I’ll remember this. Admiration/envious/impressed are thoughts that never crossed my mind and do make me feel more confident.

I've just started (only did my second run today) and one of things holding me back was the idea of people seeing me as I puffed along red faced, sweaty and looking like I shouldn't be attempting to run! That thought has literally held me back from getting out and having a go for years, the thought of other people judging me and feeling embarrassed by my attempt....and then I did it and realised that no-one cares, I've nodded at the odd dog walker and then carried on, I've even seen the same dog walkers on my way back and nodded again and they still didn't seem to care and even if they did, I was doing it, I was getting out there and running in the open where people could see me.

Really it has been so much nicer than I ever expected, even in the snow. So if you want to be outdoors, go for it!

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