Week 7 - Love, hate, love running!: This was... - Couch to 5K

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Week 7 - Love, hate, love running!


This was going to be a very different post!

So far I'd got through C25k without too much difficulty, the odd blip (W4 R1, I think) but nothing more.

Then last week, W6. The first two runs were ok.

The 25 minute run for R3 was awful. Horrendous. It started badly and got worse. I had stitch. I couldn't breathe. I was getting buffeted by the wind and hating it. About half way through I thought to myself, 'I hate running. Why am I doing this?' Then I thought, 'I just can't do this, I'll never be able to do it.' I stopped laughing at Jo Whiley when she told me how well I was doing and how she wasn't being patronising, and started swearing at her. (Sorry Jo.) By the end, my lungs were burning, I felt sick and for a moment, rather melodramatically, I thought I was going to die. Even worse, it reminded me of all the horrible experiences I'd had in school PE, which put me off running for 20 years, more or less. I had no idea what my motivation was any more.

Who know what was going on? For some unknown reason, I'd been dreading that run all week, which can't have helped. 25 minutes seemed like a long time, much longer than the 20 minutes I'd done in week 5, and after that the runs had started to seem dauntingly longer with no relief.

I know some people struggled with the heat, but I'm a warm weather shorts-and-t-shirt type person and I can't seem to get clothing right now it's a bit colder, but not *that* cold. I'd been having difficulties extending my route, too, without having to cross a main road with the risk of either having to stop or get run over! Plus there are other things going on: I'm trying to go back to finish my PhD after time off with acute anxiety. I'm well now, but the hoops the university are making me jump through are a bit stressful. So I wasn't in the best mood to begin with.

That was the depressing post I was going to write. Somehow though I managed to persuade myself to go back out there for W7R1, 25 minutes again… and it was fine! Good, even. I sorted the route, the weather was warmer, and I actually enjoyed it. (Finishing on a massive downhill probably helped.) Went back out and did W7R2 this morning, going in the opposite direction and starting with an uphill. It wasn't *quite* as good, in fact the middle bit was a bit horrible, but I kept going and tried to be positive and by the end I felt good. It's weird how sometimes you get in a groove and stop thinking about what you're doing and just keep going!

So I suppose I just want to say a bad run is probably just a bad run. If it happens to you, try not to feel too dispirited, hard though that is. You can do it. 😎

(The photo is cow field I run through on my route, at the top of the park. You can just see the old windmill (minus sails) on the left. Only the cars and student flats really tell you this is in the middle of the city!)

14 Replies

Week 6 is a very interesting and challenging week, many of us have struggled with it... run 3 is a jolt back to the just running that ends week 5... good job getting through it. Week 7, in theory, rewards the hard work as there’s no step up. You’ve done fantastically well and you’re now all set to run to the end of it. 7 runs to go.


This is all because Week 6 is for some unexplained reason a complete arse of a week ! Everything before and since Week 6 has been fine for me and many others. Well done.

jillyr in reply to Grandadmike

Useful to know! I’ve just started week 6 and was expecting it to be easy after last week. I think my expectations were too high so mentally and physically it was a real struggle. Will try to persevere!

emily-mGraduate in reply to Grandadmike

Thanks. It's funny, after I wrote this I read through quite a lot of old week 6/7 posts and found a lot of people saying similar things, which is actually encouraging.


Just relax... Well done you...:)

For many of the runs have the ability to challenge....but, they do all follow on... we just have to trust the plan and believe in ourselves.

You just move on steadily and slowly...you have confidence in you... you are going this and you will succeed.

You have a lot on in your life..PHDs are not a walk in the park..( sorry for the pun) so, use these next runs to relax and let the stress disappear. Start slow, stay slow... just try to the newly forming running legs find their happy pace.

You are doing wonderfully!!!

emily-mGraduate in reply to Oldfloss

Thanks, great advice. Will try to follow!


Well done for getting through a really tough one! - I could honestly have written much the same about my W5R3 (the one everyone seems to love and find their running mojo on... I hated it and nearly gave up on the whole programme!)

Now, just started week 9, and I am amazed at how much progress seems to have happened over the last couple of weeks: I managed 30 mins for the first time - a miracle for someone who has always hated running - and my stamina seems to be improving. I think acceptance is the key as you say: some days it's going to feel tough but the next time might well be unexpectedly 'easy'. Anyway, thanks for your post: it's always really motivating and interesting to hear about how other people cope with the ups and downs.

emily-mGraduate in reply to Reverie1

I was in the 'I loved W5 R3' camp but after last week I can well understand how that might not be the same for everyone! Anyway, well done on reaching week 9. 😎


Nice post! Thank You! :-)


Thanks everyone for the encouraging replies. Means a lot. 😀

Looking forward to W7R3 over the weekend. (Hoping the wind drops a bit, mind…) 😎


It’s encouraging hearing the highs and lows, the programme isn’t just one leg in front of the other and breathe but perseverance when it doesn’t go as well as you would hope! You have definitely put me in the right mind for my next one-starting week 6. Happy running with the rest of your week!

emily-mGraduate in reply to Marcia-H

Thanks, all the best for your next week too!


Is that Castle Leazes? I used to live on Richardson Road. Loved it there!

emily-mGraduate in reply to TBB21

Well spotted!

Yep, it's the cow field between Leazes Park and Spital Tongues. The line of cars is on Richardson Road, so the flats are the new ones on the other side. (Maybe they've replaced where you lived if it was a while ago?) Castle Leazes halls themselves are behind me.

It's a really nice place to go and run. I love to see the cows, though they're pretty indifferent to my efforts. 😎

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