๐Ÿƒ Running update from me - C25K really works! - Couch to 5K

Couch to 5K

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๐Ÿƒ Running update from me - C25K really works!

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โ€ข32 Replies

Hello there lovely fellow runners,

I have realised that since I started the Bridge to 10k challenge, I don't post on this forum as often as I should, so I wanted to share with you how I'm getting on.

I graduated from C25K way back in November, I ran the last few weeks of it whilst battling a knee injury that, looking back, I was in denial about, so had to take a couple of weeks off after graduation. Then the weather got bad, so I only really feel I've been able to consolidate the work I did on C25K from the spring onwards. So - what have I learned from doing Couch to 5K?

Well first of all, the programme really works. I was not fit at all when I started, after W1R1 I was both overjoyed that I'd completed it, and considering giving up there and then. I made a choice though; I've given up on too many things in my life. My degree, various jobs, my marriage (yup), I was NOT going to give up on this. My mental health was in a pretty bad state, I was quite badly depressed, I needed to get up out of my little nest of self-pity and actually do something positive for myself. Enter C25K of course.

At various points I doubted whether I could do this, but once I realised, from seeing other people progress, that this really works, I gave up doubting. Also I think as for many, week 5 run 3 was a turning point. That was my first serious distance run, and I did it first time. I could hardly believe it. From then on, it became not "if" I complete this, but "when". And in the end, on 5th November 2017 (I think), I did my week 9 run 3.

I started working towards 10K nearly 4 weeks ago, by following ju-ju-'s plan, which is really good fun. The reason I'm posting this is that I just ran for 8k solidly. It took me 1 hour and 1 minute to run it , but I did it, and I feel great. This program works folks!

If you'd told me I'd be running 8k continuously, when I started C25K, I would not have thought I was capable, but the trick here is just to look as far as the next run. After 5k I thought that was my limit, and didn't think there was any way I could have managed 8, but having accidentally run 6.5k, I realised working towards 10k was in reach, so I've just gradually worked my way up for the last few weeks. I ran 8k with no problems, and I'm confident I can get to 10.

So - if you're struggling in C25K, believe in yourself, and trust the programme. If it works for a complete former fitness-phobe like me, it can work for you. And the effect on my mental health is nothing short of incredible. I have more energy, I'm more positive, and I believe in myself again.

So go on - what are you waiting for? You can do it!

Neil

p.s. Use the forum here for support, everyone's amazing!!

32 Replies
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What a brilliant post. This programme does indeed work and I support you on that.

All it takes is some determination & patience. The 9 weeks will fly by anyway.

Well done on the 8km run. That's very impressive. You'll soon hit that 10km mark. โ˜บ

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Hidden in reply to Donna79

Thanks Donna, yes, and in fact your own running journey is a perfect example of that I think. You've got a good way into the programme, had some setbacks, and now, here you are, nearly at the finish line!

I have to ask... how's your foot feeling today?

Donna79 profile image
Donna79 in reply to Hidden

Well I had to struggle on it all day yesterday and then at work in the night.

I've been stretching it, rolling it with a freezing bottle of water, taking painkillers, eccentric heel drops and anything else that has been recommended to me or what I've been reading up on.

Can't see a Dr til next week but it seems a bit better than yesterday. I do however still have pain. ๐Ÿ˜”

My graduation run will be a very very slow run tomorrow but I will graduate. โ˜บ

Jay66UK profile image
Jay66UKGraduate

Well done!

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Hidden in reply to Jay66UK

Thank you, it was actually fun. Since when did I turn into the sort of person who actually likes running?!

Jay66UK profile image
Jay66UKGraduate in reply to Hidden

Same here. Madness!

QueenTea profile image
QueenTeaGraduate

Fantastic & encouraging post - thank you. So good to hear that youโ€™re continuing & improving. ๐Ÿ™‚

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Hidden in reply to QueenTea

Thank you QueenTea, believe me, no one is more surprised than I!!

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pianoteacherGraduate

Fantastic inspirational post! Very well done on your 8k x

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Hidden in reply to pianoteacher

Thank you pianoteacher, I try my best. I wanted to share some of the joy I now get from running, and knowing that I can do something I couldn't do a year ago. It's fun :)

Incidentally talking of joy, I'm guessing you're a piano teacher, right? Running has helped me regain a little joy in my life after a bad marriage breakup, one of the other things has been playing the piano.

pianoteacher profile image
pianoteacherGraduate in reply to Hidden

That's so good to hear Neil - music is such a wonderful gift. I have lots adult pupils many of whom have wanted to have a go at playing the piano since they were children. Even if they can only manage the easiest pieces the joy that can be got from it is huge x

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Hidden in reply to pianoteacher

So true. Iโ€™m fortunate that Iโ€™m naturally musical, so I can just sit down and play by ear. Thereโ€™s something awesome about getting oneโ€™s feelings out through improvisation. I still play from music too, did Grade 8 many years ago.

pianoteacher profile image
pianoteacherGraduate in reply to Hidden

I'm not blessed with good ears unfortunately - my boyfriend has very good pitch and is a brilliant improviser (trumpet not piano). I do teach improvisation through simple patterns though which most of my pupils enjoy a lot - once they get over their own self conciousness :-)

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Hidden in reply to pianoteacher

Oh - and judging by your profile pic, maybe you are also a clarinettist? I learned to Grade 5, but then took up the pipe organ instead, bizarrely!

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pianoteacherGraduate in reply to Hidden

Yep after a 20+ year gap! Working for my dipABRSM at the moment. I did organ to Grade 7 but gave up because I only got a merit - very poor attitude on my part. Seems there are quite a lot of musicians on here :-)

Myrar profile image
MyrarGraduate

What a lovely encouraging post . Well done you ..Wow 8k ..It sounds so far away for us new graduates ...All the best to you ๐Ÿ˜Š๐Ÿ˜Š

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Hidden in reply to Myrar

Thanks Myrar, it really isn't that far away. Remember how you went from running for 20 minutes at the end of week 5, to 25 minutes at the end of week 6, then 28 minutes, then 30 minutes? By that time, you've already gained the ability run for longer distances, and to sustain a run at nice steady pace. A bit of consolidation, I'm sure you'd be fine. For me, it's just applying what I learned doing C25K again. I'd recommend going through the Couch to 5K+ podcasts btw, they're excellent: nhs.uk/live-well/exercise/c...

Myrar profile image
MyrarGraduate in reply to Hidden

When I get back out running I will check the 5k podcasts out thank you ๐Ÿ˜Š

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Hidden in reply to Myrar

It's Laura from the podcast version of C25K. She has a nasty habit of counting out-of-time, just in case you'd forgotten how to count, but it's really helpful having suitable music to run to, or at least I found it so.

_SimonT_ profile image
_SimonT_Graduate

Great stuff Neil! Very inspirational for us on the route to graduation. You are doing really well on your step up to 10k!

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Hidden in reply to _SimonT_

Thank you, you're pretty close I see. How's the stomach going? Maybe rest for a couple of days after you recover, just to allow yourself to get back to full strength, otherwise you might have a crap run (pun intended!)

_SimonT_ profile image
_SimonT_Graduate in reply to Hidden

Haha! Itโ€™s really annoying now. On the mend though thanks. ๐Ÿ˜€

Amazing, inspirational post that I loved reading. Great to hear about your running journey to date ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ‘

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Hidden in reply to owmeknees

Thank you, owmeknees. It's no exageration that taking up running has transformed my life, and if I can encourage others along the way, then that's a major win as far as I'm concerned.

What a fantastic post to read. Iโ€™m (was) also a fitness phobe and always wondered what all the fuss was about. The main reason for me starting this programme was to help me decrease my anti depressants (and to get fit) and todayโ€™s run (wk 6 run 3) I think has been a turning point for me. Actually enjoyed it!!! Feels good doesnโ€™t it?!

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Hidden in reply to carrielakin76

It certainly does, Carrie. I was like you, a complete sceptic when I started, but I was in such a bad place mentally, that I felt I had to do something. Antidepressants were not the whole answer for me, but they did give me the ability to start tackling things myself. I did 3 things: Take sertraline, prescribed by the doc obviously, take up running, and go through a course of counselling. All of those I think for my situation were essential, but I honestly feel like a new person.

Take care Carrie, and I really hope things improve for you.

Dexy5 profile image
Dexy5Graduate

Thank you for letting us know your story 316neil. One that many people will relate to and be inspired by it. 8k is a long way - I am very impressed . ๐Ÿƒโ€โ™‚๏ธ๐Ÿ‘

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Hidden in reply to Dexy5

Thank you Dexy, youโ€™re right, 8k does sound a long way, doesnโ€™t it? I never in my wildest dreams believed I could do that. For me though, I think the slow and steady approach of C25K is really paying off, and has given me the tools to do things I never imagined were possible. I just wish Iโ€™d started doing this years ago!!

Dexy5 profile image
Dexy5Graduate in reply to Hidden

Donโ€™t we all , but sometimes things happen at a certain time for good reason.

Amazing achievement, well done to you and thanks for sharing.

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Hidden in reply to cheryl_couch_tatty

Thank you Cheryl! Itโ€™s one of those โ€œif I can do it anyone canโ€ situations... I guess itโ€™s the old thing about โ€œHow do you eat an elephant โ€œ - one bite at a time.

Good luck with your own running journey!

Well I have never heard the elephant thing before ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚

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