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Couch to 5K
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Running Confidence!

Hi everyone! This is my first post on here and I'm looking forward to chatting to you all! Once the kids are in bed tonight I'll be heading out for my w2r1!

I was wondering if there is anyone here who has struggled with confidence of running in public?

I am overweight and have been trying to sort unsuccessfully for years. I started c25k in a move to focus less on crash diets and more on just being all round healthier - my rationale is if I put work in being active I'm less likely to sit on an evening and eat! I was doing ok until I was out on Thursday evening and a work colleague saw me. I knew I was in for a slagging on Friday morning as our office is very bantery but I didn't expect that once he started I promptly burst into tears! I know it was just meant as banter and he didn't mean any harm (apologised profusely and I know he was annoyed at himself). Once I got over the tears I laughed about it but deep down it has really knocked my confidence and I'm flitting between giving up because I'm just a fat bird making a fool of herself and "showing" him.

Does everyone feel a bit like this or have any advice? Thank you so much!

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Ooh yes me!

I lost 2 stone before I found out about C25k and started the program at the end of January/start of February sometime. I must say my colleagues have been nothing but supportive although I’m not sure they thought I’d go til the end. At first I would only go out when it was dark, and had the advantage of being able to wear a hood as it was often snowing! I had a teenage chav guy tell me to hurry once as he sat on his butt with his chav girlfriend. I said well at least I’m going faster than you! But now my confidence had increased as I can run for extended times and have lost a lot more weight.

DO A PARKRUN. They’re fab. I walked my first on week 1 and it took 48 minutes. Everyone was so supportive and I was hooked. From then I did the last of my weekly sessions inside the ParkRun, including (til week 7) the 5 min warm up. It’s a great motivator!

This program is amazing. I’ve combined it with slimming world. In just 12 weeks from my start I’ve gone on to get to 10k and also to a 33 minute ParkRun time. Oh and I’ve lost over 3.5 stone to date!

Good luck and stuff the rest. Make them your motivation - PROVE TO THEM THAT YOU CAN DO THIS!

Stick to this forum - post often, and you’ll get all the support you need to get through. And always slow down and slow down more!

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Thanks so much Tasha! My little boy does junior parkrun so I can imagine how fab the adult one is but unfortuntely until July he has swimming lessons when it is on :( I so want to do this I really do i just keep thinking how proud I will be when I do it!

You have done fantastic and 10k in 12 weeks wow!

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You will do it too! Good luck and keep posting right here! 👌🏽

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You go, girl! At least you are out there giving it a go! I understand what you mean - I haven't told any of my teammates from the hockey club that I'm doing this as they are very predisposed to mockery. Although they all want me to be fitter!

Cap. Sunglasses. Hood. Earphones. Shut the whole world out and do this for YOU! Before long your new confidence and fitness will be wowing them all.

Good luck #youcandoit

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Thank you Marv - excuse me for saying this I hope I don't offend but there is a laddish culture and everything is a slagging match. I'm sure your team mates notice the difference!

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In your position I'd have been inclined to punch him hon! All kinds of really hurtful behaviour gets "softened" by being described as "banter". In the words of the old saying "Don't let the b*stards drag you down"! You're doing something incredibly important that will tranform you physically and mentally and you'll leave him with egg all over his face. You show 'em.

No-one here will pretend it's easy cos it isn't. But we've all been on the same journey and you'll find everyone on here supportive and willing you on.

Make sure you've got some decent trainers, a sense of humour, a bit of grit and find a few people who are at the same stage you are. Buddy up and you'll all help each other.

On with the journey babe! You won't regret this!! :-)

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Thank you so much! I got my gait done and you're so right I can tell even out on a walk the difference a good pair of trainers makes, thank you I will show him!

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You're all set! Get ready to astonish that loser in the office!! And yourself!!

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Bless you! Don't let it put you off. The best way to get revenge is to say nothing & just quietly prove people wrong. Which you will. This programme really does work.

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Thank you running 5km seems a long way off at the minute but I can do this!

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It does to me too - I'm on W5 about to do R3 tomorrow and I cannot imagine running for 30 minutes. I'm not new to running - I'm back after a years break but I have never run for longer than 4 minutes until I started this programme- 8 minutes on Friday - I've never done that ever! So just goes to prove this programme really does work. Good luck & keep on running.

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Well done you! It's amazing what improvements you can make in a short space of time isn't it!

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I’m glad he apologised and feels bad because he should. There’s nothing worse than someone taking the piss out of someone who is just trying to improve their health, it’s just mean.

Keep running, you’re doing it for you nobody else and keep posting too because there’s loads of support on here, we’re all pretty much in the same boat to a greater or lesser extent really.

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Thank you Jenny. I think what hurt me most is that he is someone I see as a friend and if a 'friend' can say that what must strangers think? But maybe in a few weeks he'll see me out running and think twice before ever doing something like that again!

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I could've cried myself reading this. It's great that you can get past it, although hopefully he's learned an important lesson. There's absolutely nothing to feel embarrassed about. However we step out the door and whatever we look like after a gruelling run, it's a step in the right direction and no-one can take away from us the sense of achievement we get. Sweaty, messy and beetroot face, yes, it's the result of hard work 'pet'!!!!!! Chin up. Xx

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Thank you so much xx

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Who cares what strangers think though, those who matter don’t mind and those who mind don’t matter, or something like that 😊

I struggle with my weight too and I do feel self conscious when I run as I huff and puff and look like a tomato but I’m bloody well doing my thing. Keep your earphones in and your eyes on your goal and to hell with the rest 🖕to them and 💪🏃🏻‍♀️ to you!

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Thank you so much, love that saying it's soo true!

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I amaze myself every time. I'm not finding it easy by any stretch of the imagination but I am enjoying it. I'm sure you will too. Someone at work who is an experienced runner said to me that once you are a runner you are always a runner - it gets in your blood. I can certainly see why.

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Someone said similar I laughed and said I can't ever imagine that but I guess some day it might click! I do really want it and think I'll be massively proud when i do!

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Well done you for getting started! I'd be in the same mind set as you, mortified that someone had seen me and ready to stop but I also have that little voice that says 'I'm going to prove you all wrong'. I just have to laugh at myself. I don't run fast at all. If you can call what I do a jog you'd be doing well. When I see other people out running and they look cool, casual and have a good pace I wonder if I am ever going to look like that instead of the huffing puffing tortoise that I am 😂😂 they all started somewhere though.

Keep your head high and just imagine the look on your colleagues faces when you say you've completed the plan and can run for 30 minutes non stop.

Like sallenson said, keep posting on here. Everyone is very supportive and will give you a boost if you're feeling a bit overwhelmed.

Happy running! 😊🏃

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Thank you so much i can def see that already!

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I love that comment "they all started somewhere" because it's so true. No-one was a born runner, the athlete you see learned through trial, error and hard work, like the rest of us x

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See? Your first post and 18 replies and counting. We're all here for each other. You get out what you put so don't be a stranger. We're a nice bunch really. Just a bit addicted to posting on here and C25K is an excuse for typing nonsense :-)

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Thanks so much i definately think I'll be a regular really raring to go on my run tonight now! When it gets tough I'm just going to think how sweet it will be to show people I can do it!

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oh my goodness I completely understand. I am overweight and am always in a state of lack of confidence about me ..yes me running! I go out at 6am to avoid people which isn't hard to do as I live in a remote area. My confidence was further dented when a group of friends I was having coffee with quite literally laughed at me when I told them I had downloaded the C25K app. I had comments that I wasn't built for running. The good people on here picked me up and dusted me off and I just kept going. I am in week 7 now and I am absolutely loving it. Cant say I've lost loads more weight but I have firmed up, lost inches but i am so much healthier and happier. Keep going

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Don't know why my reply didn't show here but well done you. I'm sure those friends aren't laughing now!

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Good for you. People can be such a-holes! Don't think it's intentional, just lack of thought and consideration. Would love to see their faces now! Keep up the good work x

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And that's what it's all about isn't it! Thanks for letting me know I'm not alone I'm sure your 'friends' aren't laughing now!

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I’m sure many, many of us have felt self-conscious, I ran my first week either in the dark or so early in the morning only the local blackbird would see me.. keep going as when the buzz kicks in you won’t care what people think. 😊

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Thanks so much just in from w2r1 with my head held high xx

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Welcome to the forum and well done on getting started.

The guide to the plan is essential reading healthunlocked.com/couchto5... and addresses this issue.

You are doing this for you and it is an empowering training plan that will build your self esteem and confidence and in no time you will not mind who sees you.

Stick with it. It works.

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Thank you x

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Isn’t it awful how people can make us feel. I’m overweight (bmi 30 point something so technically obese).

I’m a bloke and I think we get away with being overweight more than women do. All I can say is I’ve loved working through this programme and I’ve been lucky so far to have no cat calls or banter about it. If I had I think I would’ve quit in the early weeks.

I can’t really offer any advice other than to say I hope you choose to continue running. It has made me feel so much more confident and it is helping me get fitter.

Thanks for being brave enough to start the programme and to share this with us. Good luck!

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Thank you for your encouragement! Isnt it great we have the courage to get out there and do it!

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It is. I’m loving running and I’ve always hated exercise before. I hope you enjoy it too.

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Know you replied to my post earlier but just wanted to send you a big cwtch and say keep going you are doing brilliant!!! If it’s any consolation I only run along the canal and used to want to stop if anyone was in view, but I’m getting more confident and people I have passed have been so supportive. According to nhs guidelines I need to lose a few stone to be considered nhs healthy but my family and friends love me and that’s enough for me 😘 keep going lovely xx

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Thank you so much x

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Thank you so much everyone. You all gave me the push to hold my head high! Just in from my w2r1 and i nailed it 😊

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You’ll keep on nailing them all!

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Brilliant just brilliant. You’re doing it for the only reason necessary- YOU! Go girl - feel proud.🏃🏼‍♀️💪

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Yay! Good for you!!

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I know just how you feel. I've bored the pants off everyone on here with my posts about how difficult I find it to run in public. I did it all in my garden because I couldn't bear to go out with real people. But, now I can (just about!!) Doing this will give you confidence, time and repeatedly getting out there takes the edge off. As you progress you will feel better and eventually not really give a toss. Plus your body will change and tone up boosting your confidence further. Big changes can happen and you are amazing for just starting to do this. People are idiots, you are the clever one for trying to change your life. Good luck xx

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Thank you xx

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Sorry to read someone said an insensitive comment. But I hope the 40+ comments from others have helped you to gain the confidence to keep going with the plan! 🙂

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They absolutely have! Never so glad I posted here thank you!

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Do you think bad of someone you pass running?

No probably not... if you even notice them?

Don’t live life worrying what other people think or say huni, only you can make this change, and you will reap the benefit.

As a fellow ‘well built’ lass, yes I felt the burning cheeks as I ran/stumbled passed people at the beginning, now I feel a bit better I run passed and happily shout hi... I may look like a beetroot faced idiot, but seriously I don’t care... this running is giving me confidence.

Go for it lovely x

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Thank you. Exactly I just think good on that person!

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I’m so sorry. Hurtful comments cut deep. But look, you did it! You ARE doing it! Be proud! And keep reading the forum, it’s all the inspirational people on here that keep me going.

Well done girl and keep going! 👍 X

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Thank you it did but deep but maybe it's given me the extra push to prove him wrong!

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We have every faith you will prove him wrong 🏃‍♀️

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preach unto the choir, sister! I've been there, done that, got the tee-shirt and washed the tee-shirt so often it's faded to a rag.

The only person you need to impress is you. You run for you, because it's what you want (personally I use my run as my 'me-time' )

If your co-worker says anything again, even in jest, soon you'll be able to tell him 'guess what? I can still run laps around you' ;)

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What is wrong with people eh? Unfortunately he has run marathons so doubt I'll lap him lol but I may tell him in August he is doing a parkrun with me so he can witness it himself!

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my first run, I ran along a main road by my parent's house, it felt like every driver who went past felt the need to honk their horn in "encouragement" at the fat-girl running. Only Dhiny (aka my mother) holding me back stopped me from hurling stones through their back windscreens.

Now? Who cares? I'm running the fresh air, they're stuck in their cars.

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Amazing that you're getting out there, doing something amazing for your body and mind! :)

Keep at it! Hopefully after seeing your tears your coworkers have a bit of sense to stop or tone down the comments on your running.

I'm a member of a body positivity and disordered eating recovery group and can tell you that disconnecting exercise from weight loss goals, as it sounds like you're doing, is KEY! I've seen it myself and heard many stories about when people stop weighing themselves, stop judging the success of what they're doing by the numbers on the scale and instead go by how they feel, amazing things can happen! When you're expecting to lose weight and don't lose it right away, as fast as you'd like or reach a plateau, it can be very discouraging, but fitness is important no matter what size and doing it without connecting it to the scale means you're far more likely to stick with it, and actually have long term success. Hopefully you find running is a form of movement you enjoy once you're toward the end of the program too! :) It's a bit crazy to think that letting go of weight loss as the goal can actually result in weight loss, but it really can. I cannot lose weight when weight loss is my goal... I have to focus on fitness goals and things like eating more vegetables... adding things INTO my life rather than taking things out.

If you're interested, there is a book that teaches eating without the diet mentality that is so pervasive in our culture, letting go of food rules and moving away from things like emotional eating, binge/restrict cycles, etc - Intuitive Eating by Evelyn Tribole and Elyse Resch. Below is a link to a podcast that describes it a bit and give a flavour for what it's all about. Sorry if I've gone too far off topic here and this isn't of interest to you.

toppodcast.com/podcast_feed... Podcast is called Therapy Thoughts, Episode 6 is the one on Intuitive Eating. Tiffany Roe is great to follow on social media as well.

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