Couch to 5K
57,238 members89,767 posts

Terrified & wondering if I can do it

I am thinking of starting this programme tomorrow (or when this cold goes). I've never done any exercise. I'm mid-40s and am very heavy. Does anyone have a similar background with a story that shows that this CAN be done because I cannot imagine being able to run!

52 Replies
oldestnewest

Hi, I’m 40 and so unfit! But I’m starting the challenge to tomorrow, at the moment I couldn’t imagine running for a bus 🙈 but I know a few people that have been in the same position as us, completed this program and love to run now! Good luck 😊

4 likes
Reply

Good luck to you too! 😱😱

1 like
Reply

Yes you can do it, I was out the other day and noticed in the distance someone 'running' well jogging very slowly, I would say that she was jogging at 45 minutes pace for a 5k, you talk about being heavy, well I would think this lady was about 14st, BUT she kept going, did not stop although going slow, I admire people like that, yes you can also do the 5k if you keep to this program from week 1 to 9. you can repeat as many weeks as you like, best of luck.

2 likes
Reply

How did you do Jaime77?

Reply

Probably. “Very heavy” is not an exact description. I am early 50s, 5 stone over my “ideal” weight and I’m just on week 3. No real exercise for over 20 years.

If in doubt, talk to your GP.

Other advice I’ve read is try walking for 30 minutes at a pace brisk enough to raise your heart rate but so you can still talk to a person next to you. If that is difficult, you might need to do that a few times first.

Good luck - the first step is the hardest and that was asking the question.

7 likes
Reply

Thank you. I'm going to give it a go and see how I go. I just cannot imagine breaking in to any kind of run 🏃 But of others can do it surely I can do it.

I wish there was a 'Morbidly Obese & Unfit to 1k' app!

7 likes
Reply

Go at the slowest jog you can manage. You want both feet in the air for a moment between steps, that’s all. I promise you, if I can do this (3 mins non stop today for the first time 😱) you certainly can.

Good luck, and let us know how it goes!

9 likes
Reply

It exists. It's the NHS C25K you've got... few of us are running 5K by the end of the programme and many of us will always be strangers to the 30 minute 5k... even if we can run for many kms.

Your mistake (as for most of us when we start) is to think that breaking into a run is something necessarily faster than a walk.

Enjoy!

3 likes
Reply

Loads of folk have felt just like you... and they are running. Check this post out... lots of advice for Newbies... tried and tested:)

healthunlocked.com/couchto5...

Then.... when your cold has gone... ( not a great idea to begin this under par).. slow, steady and relaxed. Keep posting and take this in your own time:)

Welcome to the forum family :)

1 like
Reply

The running shoe tip is interesting. I'll definitely be doing that. Thank you

1 like
Reply

Go for it. I'm 42, carrying 4 extra stone 😱 and just about to start week 9. I wouldn't say I never exercise as I walk 2 miles to work every day but I've never broken into a run before! Just follow the instructions and go! Good luck!

4 likes
Reply

You can do it, take it very very slowly , first 60 second run I found I was very out of breath but I managed . Leave more than one rest day if you need it, I do! I'm on week4 run 3 tomorrow. Post on here it gives you support 😊Good luck 😊

1 like
Reply

Yes you hit a lot of the criteria for this group! I'm 50 this year, about 3stone heavier than I should be - have never stuck at doing any proper exercise. I struggled to run for 30seconds on week1 I'm now on week 6 and ran for 20minutes without stopping last week! So yes this can be done! Come and join us! X

4 likes
Reply

Wow!

1 like
Reply

I know! It's insane, the programme really works if you follow it properly - you just need determination (something I never had before!) and motivation which you get stacks of on here! 🤗

2 likes
Reply

That's amazing well done I'm starting week2 today

1 like
Reply

Browse through the FAQ posts healthunlocked.com/couchto5... for advice and banish fear............it is negative and unhelpful.

Believe us when we tell you that you can do this, follow the instructions and take it slow.

Enjoy your journey........... don't fear the challenge.

5 likes
Reply

Thank you Ian!

Reply

I started the programme at 52 having never run in my life, and as part of my recovery from a mastectomy and treatment for breast cancer. That 1 year and 8 months ago. I got to week 8 and then had further surgery (a lumpectomy on other boob) so started again a week later in two sports bras to stop any movement.

1 year and 8 months later I can now run up to 15km and feel really fit.

The programme works, just believe in it. There will be times when it’s tough, and that’s where this great virtual running family will be invaluable in supporting, guiding, encouraging, consoling and running with you (virtually). Good luck for Week 1. 😀

14 likes
Reply

This is a great post, Razouski. Thank you.

2 likes
Reply

That's great advice. Thank you.

1 like
Reply

Hi I'm 43 weighed about 121kg when I started I also have an issue with a painful gallstone and chronic migraine!

I just did run 1 of week 9 yesterday and will graduate on either Sunday or Monday depending on work. I wasn't a runner in anyway shape or form but can now run 30 mins continuously!!!

I currently weight 113kg so it helped there as well.

Advise would be go for it, good shoes, good sports bra, drink plenty of water and music really helps me.

Good luck 🏃‍♀️🏃‍♀️🏃‍♀️

3 likes
Reply

I have 4 runs left and although I wasn’t massively overweight I was far from being fit ! However to can now do 5k in around 35 mins and some of that is walking! Become obsessed and booked a booked a 10k for sept

2 likes
Reply

I am on a third week of week one still can't make a full minute for all runs but just keep chipping away. The secret is not to be hard on yourself and to keep trying!

4 likes
Reply

The best advice I can give is forget the "nine weeks" part of the app! Try to complete each run, but do it until you feel comfortable with it. Three runs in a week is not enough to allow you to move on. We have done week one three and a half times, before moving on to week two which we are on the second time. We will likely do a third week.

Nothing more disheartening than moving on too soon and realising that you just can't do it. There is no time limit, we are all different and it takes time. But one thing I can tell you, you CAN do it! Just take your time.

5 likes
Reply

I used to say that if I'd waited for Week One to feel 'comfortable' I'd still be waiting... but last week I did do it, and I did feel comfortable. However, between starting the programme and last week is over six years of running... up to 12k and for over two hours.

Since every time you get out there you are building fitness and a habit of being active it doesn't really *matter* if you choose not to move on as soon as you've completed three sessions... but you're ready. Countless graduates - starting overweight, ill, unfit, elderly and often all four - can testify to that.

How is 'just can't do it' defined? Not completing the session in full? Many of us have that experience at least once during the programme (me and Week One over and over and over). Virtually everyone has at least one run where they really struggle and find it a terrible slog. It's all useful learning - and about emotional stamina rather than physical. Of course it often helps to come here and wail about it a bit!

2 likes
Reply

Thank you!

Reply

I started when I was 49. Overweight unfit and avoided exercise since school. Have had lots of time off for injuries but love it, currently learning to run again after a hip injury and so glad to be back Give it a go. You won’t regret it. Just remember to go slow then slow down some more , get decent sports bra and ideally get fitted for running shoes at a running shop. Don’t get worried if you can’t complete the first session. That took me 5 hoes building up to the 8 one minute runs (which are actually really slow jogs). Good luck !

1 like
Reply

Started in my 50s and never expected I could run for 5k, in fact 1k seemed frankly unlikely! 4 1/2 years later I can keep running for 12 k ( non stop). I'm not sporty at all, but it's really handy to be able to run for a bus or train and not feel like I'm going to expire afterwards. You can most definitely do this!

3 likes
Reply

Late 50s and 3 stone overweight, one hip replacement and diabetes T2 here. Haven’t run since getting arthritis as a teenager and having to stop being the schools 100 meter runner. On week 9 run 2 at the moment. It’s all about attitude LoonyLoo. Go for it!!! I’m feeling great on this; you will too. 👍🏻

3 likes
Reply

I've had a hip replacement too! And my other hip is a bit rubbish. Everyone has been so supportive. Thank you!

1 like
Reply

Great to meet a fellow hippy! ❤️🏃🏼‍♀️🥂

Reply

Can I join the hip club ?! THR in left and arthritis managed by durolane injection in right

1 like
Reply

Welcome on board! 😊. How’s the running coming along? I may start a new thread. Watch out for it. 😉

2 likes
Reply

Good I graduated a few weeks ago , although had an argument with the dog on one run so my achielles is a tad sore at mo 😬how are you finding it ?

Reply

I'm doing run 3 tonight. Run 2 was definitely easier than run 1, so I'm hoping run 3 will be easier than run 2!

My replaced hip was sore over the weekend. But seems mostly better today. I'll keep you posted. At least you've told me it CAN be done with fade hips!

1 like
Reply

I’ve never had soreness with the muscles around my hip. I had it done over 5 years ago. 😊

Reply

I am 63 and always used the excuse that this body was built for comfort, not speed!

I started the programme last May and, week by week I became stronger and more able to cope.

I was blowing for a tug after my first minute, but was determined not to give in.

I can’t tell you how elated I felt in July when I ran for 30 mins 3 times in a week!

Go for it, don’t push yourself, take rest days, but do it, you will be sooooo proud of yourself.

Good luck!

2 likes
Reply

Go for it! I am in a similar situation to you and just started week 3 this morning. Just go nice and slow and you will do it x good luck

1 like
Reply

Hello, I’m 43 and this was my third attempt at couch to 5k , started in January. The previous 2 attempts I gave up at week 3. First time was perhaps too soon after baby number 3 and second time I had too many pains and was newly diagnosed as hypothyroid. So I am really pleased that I did it this time. There is a good group and some slow runners like me in my area. Now I’m running 5k three times a week and hoping to increase to 10k in the future. Good luck 🍀

3 likes
Reply

Hi, I am 46 and I am also very heavy. I stated this programme in January and did all the short runs on the treadmill up until about week 5 when you start running for 8 minuets constant then I ventured outside. I am now still heavy although I have lost some weight and I am running between 5.5K and 7K. This app is great I never thought I could run for 5K I have never run even is school I avoided anything to do with running. all you need is the app, the will power to succeed and a change in what you eat. Good luck and go for it.

2 likes
Reply

Hi LoonyLoo

I started Saturday I am 50 and about 6 stone overweight, it was difficult but have been assured that it only get easier :)

My next session is tonight after work.

xx

3 likes
Reply

Good luck!

Reply

Hi.LoonyLoo

You CAN do it, be brave and take the first step. Pretty much everyone on here started with the same doubts, i know i did. I'm 48 and weighted around 24 and a half stone when i started. I'm now in the middle of week 4, and hand on heart, i wish I'd started sooner. It took me a few weeks to convince myself to go and spent ages trying to think of the quietest place possible, convienced everyone would be waiting to stop and stare at me. The first run, week 1 day 1, was really tough no question about it BUT the sense of achievment when the voice at the end said "well done, you've completed your first run " IS INCREDIBLE, EVEN THOUGH IT WASNT PERFECT.

You will have aches and pains, especially the first week but dont give up, it is really worth it. Also trust the voice when they say it works because it does. You dont need to run like Usain Bolt so dont think you have to and there is no right or wrong speed. You will find your own pace. Do get a half decent pair of trainers, be prepared to put in the effort, and dont let excuse get in the way, it will be worth it. And finally as I'm sure others have said, check with your doctor first. Good luck

3 likes
Reply

Thank you! Tonight is the night! 😱😱

Reply

you can do this. The thought of doing it is a lot worse than actually doing this programme.

2 likes
Reply

You will be fine it's designed for absolute beginners.

1 like
Reply

I did it! I did my first run (well, slow jog!). I lost 18 seconds off the last run 🏃 but I can't believe I even did that.

I literally can't believe it.

1 like
Reply

Well done LoonyLoo, that is AWESOME

1 like
Reply

Hey I’m 40 just, and about 8 stone overweight I am about to do my second day of week one but am going to do it at the gym today because I struggled on the street, I also need a better sports bra lol

After the first day I did I was so knackered I thought I would die but I admit I felt better so just do what feels comfortable for you and don’t let fear get in your way, I wasn’t even jogging I was just walking very fast and I’ll just build up until I can do more

1 like
Reply

Well done! I have repeated the whole of week 2 now. So, on Tuesday I'm taking the plunge & moving on to wk 3. 😱😱😱

Reply

Hiya, I’m 41 & weigh 2.5 stone more than I should. I haven’t jogged since leaving school. I’m halfway through week 6 without injuries & really shocked with how far I’ve progressed.

I jog at an incredibly slow pace - but I’m absolutely ok with that! I’m a proud plodder!

Definitely give it a try x

Reply

You may also like...