Couch to 5K
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C25k to 🏎󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿 Half Marathon

C25k to 🏎󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿 Half Marathon

Hi all,

Thought I would finally post an update of my post c25k journey.

I started c25k in April this year with the aim (slightly naively) of doing the Cardiff Half Marathon this October. It wasn’t easy and I laughed, I cried and I had a few strops but I graduated the beginning of July along with a bunch of other lovely folks from the c25k community. Hello to all of you 🀗🀗🀗🀗

After c25k I felt a bit lost and just tried to keep on running through the long, hot summer and up the distances slowly but steadily.

Once September came we started doing 9 or 10 miles every Sunday and to clarify I was not running all of that but built upto running nearly 3/4 of that and it wasn’t super quick but I was covering the distance. I should point out here the we includes my amazing hubby who keeps me going literally through thick and thin, sunshine and rain, good days and bad.

All through this whole process I told no-one as I had this great fear of letting family and friends down and almost being ridiculed as even though this year I’ve done more running than in the last thirty years combined I haven’t lost much weight, it’s just shifted around and I’ve firmed up a fair bit but I am still overweight. My comfort blanket was the canal as all we ever encountered were a few cyclists, fellow joggers and dog walkers.

So the Cardiff Half Marathon was Sunday 7th October and the week before I still hadn’t opened my race pack and was having sleepless nights with all my anxieties running riot. I was anxious about running with other people (20,000 other people), would I finish before the 4hrs 30mins deadline, would people laugh at me and most of all would I just fail and let my husband and myself down.

Saturday dawned and I just woke with a calmer mindset and thought I have to do this. I’ve put the hours in and even if I walk it I can do that in 4hrs 30mins. My hubby was over the moon and that morning was spent getting last minute things like a box of safety pins, jelly babies and plasters just incase!!

Sunday we woke at 6am, got to Cardiff for 8-30am and handed in our baggage on a glorious South Wales sunny morning. Our bibs were yellow as we had put our finishing times down as 3hrs 30mins as for me that was a pb!!!

The wait for the walk up to the start line was excruciating and I felt like I had a brick in my tummy the nerves were so bad. I was smiling but inside I was silently screaming what are you doing!!! You don’t do this kind of thing, you give up, this is beyond you but I kept taking deep breaths and fighting back the feeling to run back to the car!!

The start for me personally was horrendous I ended up running my fastest ever kilometre and a few times fellow runners caught my feet because I had nowhere to hide. I got to the third kilometre and finally started to relax into my running and take stock of what I was doing and start to look up and smile at the whole occasion. Five kilometres was the first water station and it was much needed!! The half way point took us across Cardiff barrage and the bay and the sun had come out with a vengeance. Running through the city was simply amazing but then we hit miles 10 to 12 around Roath Park and that was my slowest two miles.

Finally we reached the last stretch and I could feel my emotions starting to surface. We crossed the line and I sobbed my heart out. The sense of achievement and my actual pride in actually achieving something was simply overwhelming. I cried when I was given my medal, my good bag and my banana!!! Have to also mention how amazing the volunteers were around the whole course and all the people lining the way.

Apologies for how long this post is but I just wanted to get across to anyone having any doubts about this process you can do it. This program works and although a half marathon was a big leap I am so chuffed I saw it through. I am still overweight and have hang ups being seen running in public but I have a medal and a T-shirt and no one can take that off me. Best of all I’ve already registered my interest to do the 2019 Cardiff Half!!! Who would have thought c25k could have made me love running but it has.. so go for it.. no one can stop you but you. You got this 🀩

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Wowsers!! This is an inspiring post!!! Amazing. Well done. Enjoy your celebrating!!!

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Thank you, going to enjoy my weekend off 👍🏻

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U deserve it!!!

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That is fantastic and so inspiring. Congratulations! Don't worry about what anyone else thinks you are a runner and you have a very shiny medal to prove it! 😀 🏅🏃‍♀

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Thank you. I do have a medal and I’ve resisted the urge to wear it to bed or hoovering 🏅😉

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You have to wear it for hoovering

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That’s amazing, congratulations xx

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Many thanks!!

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Brilliant post Jo! I remember how worried you were about telling your family and friends. I hope you've shouted this from the rooftops - it's a fantastic achievement 😁

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Thank you! Funnily enough I still haven’t told many people as kind of like that it’s my precious, private memory - not thinking I’ve just shared it on here for everyone to see 🀭

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I won't tell anyone 🀣😂

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You are an inspiration! Amazing! Wow!! Such a brilliant achievement! Yay!!!

I'm still running, not as far as you though! 😁😁😁👟👟🍟🍟🍟🍟

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Thanks Ang hope all well with you and great to hear your still running too. Go girl 🏃🏜‍♀👍🏻

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Well done. That's amazing. I really want to do the half marathon. Me myself near finished 5k so its really good to hear someone else has done it.

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Well done Johnny keep going and definitely sign up when your ready. The feeling of crossing that line was simply amazing 😉 a lovely gent on the run told me that he wasn’t going to win the half but he wasn’t going to lose either and I loved that mindset. Good luck 😉 🏃‍♂

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C25K leads ............who knows where........many congratulations.

It does us all a great deal of good to step outside of our comfort zones on occasion, just to remind us that the limits are, for the most part, self imposed.

Keep running, keep smiling.

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Many thanks!! Definitely will keep running and your right we set our own limits and I’ve finally conquered mine. Will keep smiling 😁

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This is one of the BEST posts I've ever read here :)

Many congratulations and what an encouraging and inspirational person you are :)

My total respect to you :)

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Thank you John 👍🏻 I posted and then realised just how much I had written but wanted to just convey the journey since April and that it is possible. Up until this point the only thing I have been good at is giving up and it’s so fantastic to finally break that cycle. Thank you and best wishes 🀗

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You are a Marvelous lady :) Wishing you many Happy miles in your future ☺

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Your a gent John, thank you 😊 xx

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As always, Irish-John gets it right, definitely one of the BEST posts I've ever read here. Thank you.

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Oh thank you that’s so kind. It was from the heart ❣ and as honest an account as I could give.

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Great inspirational post and what a journey! Congratulations on that HM, that’s a huge achievement in six months!

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Many thanks 👍🏻 It’s been an emotional journey but I’d do it all again for this post Sunday feeling. 😁

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I’ve had so many emotional moments already... I can only imagine. Well, you’re on for next autumn season, you just need a spring one now 😂

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Funnily enough I was looking at Bath half but think I need to cool my jets and calm down as the euphoria may run away with me - no pun intended!! 😉

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I don’t think you can overdose on that post run euphoria.

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True, good luck with your future runs 🏃‍♂👍🏻

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Well done! You were incredibly ambitious to go for a HM so soon after C25K. I've read a few runners' stories about their HMs and the anxieties you had seem pretty normal and you smashed your demons in the best way possible.

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Thank you!! It was on my bucket list before landmark birthday next year. I’m so glad my anxieties are normal as I did worry it was just me. The start was the most nervous I’ve been in my whole life and that’s saying something but Sunday night was my best nights rest in months so worth it 😊

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I'm entered for the 10 mile GSR next weekend. My first ever big event. I am not really worrying about whether I can run it - I haven't got that far yet - I'm still stuck on worrying where I can park, what time I need to be there to drop my bag, what if it rains, what if ..... Worrying about whether I can do it will come this week for sure. I worry about everything! It's my speciality! I noted immediately 20,000 runners and bag drop at 8.30 (no mention of it being horrendous at that time). I like to think that worrying beforehand is very normal ... but accept I will likely always be just outside of 'normal' :D :D :D

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Linda I think what your fretting about is totally normal. Thinking you can’t do it, the logistics, the weather.. all normal. We got there quite early and walked through bag drop and left our things within five minutes but know nearer race time queues had formed. But organisers have whole process buttoned down and the volunteers are amazing and will help anyway they can.

Best of luck with your race next weekend and don’t forget to update us how you got on. You got this 😊🏃🏜‍♀👍🏻

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All good to hear. I will definitely be taking your words with me for inspiration and calm :)

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Wow, you are amazing, well done!! I have only Just finished week 5 c25k, and you have given me hope that I to could possibly do a half marathon in the future x

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Many thanks and keep going your doing fab!!! C25k is a wonderful program and you could definitely do a half. Its such a cliche but honestly if I can do you can for sure. 👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻 Good luck with your last few weeks and make sure you celebrate in style graduation 🎓 🀩

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Thank you and you must now celebrate your success 👏🏻

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Great post: so positive and honest. Lovely photo too : happy people!

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Thank you Auden! Very happy and very hungry people 😊

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😭 That's a great post Jo. Awesome achievement . Well done for staying so motivated and getting to you goal. You are an inspiration to us all.

Keep going, keep amazing yourself. I for one will look forward to reading of your next success! 👏🏌

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Many thanks!! Hope you get to do your NYC run soon. I’m the same milestone next year too. Must be something in the water 😊👍🏻🏃🏜‍♀🏃🏜‍♀

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Love this! Absolutely awesome 👏 Am on the IC (again!) and reading this cheered me up no end. Well done you 👍💪😁

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Thank you 👍🏻 Hope your feeling better soon, have a fab weekend 🀗

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Many Congratulations on your fantastic achievement 👍🎉.

I imagine you are buzzing and quite rightly so!

Don't waste your energy worry if anyone is looking at you, they are probably thinking "wow, I wish I was as motivated as that amazing lady"

Always run with your head held high.... Plus you've just ran a half marathon, you go girl 💪👏🏃😁x

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Many thanks Nita.. I’m glad looking at the weather it wasn’t this weekend!! Will definitely be a bit more confident going forward 🀩

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What an inspirational post.. well done 😊

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Thank you 👍🏻

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Your story brought tears to my eyes, congratulations and well done . You are an inspiration 👏👏👏

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Thank you so much and good luck with your walk.. go girl 😊🏃🏜‍♀

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This post is the most amazing inspiring read, you are just awesome, I’m so proud of you as a fellow C25k graduate myself. I started in April but am only up to 8.5 miles distance and doing 10k organised runs. I aspire to do a half next year. Your post has given me hope that I may achieve this. Massive congratulations to you and your hubby.

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Thank you and well done to you too. You’ve done fab.. you will definitely do half and building upto it sensibly. C25k is amazing and works, we are proof 👍🏻🀩

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Wow, another post on this forum that brought tears to my eyes. I’ve stopped BUT I’m starting again. It’s never too late to achieve a dream xx

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CandyCool it definitely isn’t too late. Think sometimes life passes by and we get swept along with it but so nice to put brake on, take stock of life and think I am going to do this. This year has been one of the best and it’s all stemmed from starting to run. It is never too late. Good luck and go smash those dreams, you got this 🀗🀗👍🏻👍🏻Xx

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What an emotional post and I can relate to virtually every word of it.

What you’ve achieved is nothing short of amazing, from graduation in July to a HM in October?? I take my hat off to you young lady, you’re an inspiration to everyone on this forum 🀗

Enjoy the elation you’re feeling, you’ve earned it 😊

I know how you’re feeling. I graduated in December and have completed two halves since then, the first being the Great North Run in September followed by the Oxford Half earlier this month.

Enjoy your running journey 🏃‍♀🏃‍♀

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Ted I love the fact you called me young lady, thank you!! It’s funny as the fact I’m turning 50 next year is what triggered all this. I wasn’t going to post anything but loved c25k and the comeradery it produces amongst people sharing the journey so thought right just do it. Well done to you on your two half’s!!! That’s amazing and you’ve done fab. Please let us know how you get on with the Oxford one and best of luck 🏃‍♂😊

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I’ve got 20yrs on you Jo, hence the ‘young lady’ 😜

I did the Oxford Half last Sunday...one of the two I’ve done so far.

Next one is the Brighton Half in February 😊

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I live this post! You are an inspiration!

I Have one run left to graduate and was wondering what I was going to do next.

Maybe I'll just keep running further like you!!! Well done. You're amazing!!!

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Oh congratulations!! Hope you have the champagne on ice ready for your last run 🍟

Enjoy your moment as you have plenty of time to decide what next. But keep going and set yourself a personal goal and go for it, you can do it and best of luck with your run 3 of week 9.. huge congrats!!!! 🎉

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Congratulations!!!! You are an amazing person & a true RUNNER!!! Thank you for sharing your experience - you are an inspiration to us all. I can manage 10k now but am scared of a half marathon. I like the fact that you have just proved that running is a mindset and if you tell yourself you can do it, you can! Go and buy some new groovy running kit & wear it & run with pride. It doesn't matter what shape you are - you're way fitter than most people if you can conquer a HM! Wishing you many happy runs. X

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Thank you!! 10k is fab and your going great guns. If that was applied to a half your over half way and on way to finish line 🏃🏜‍♀🍟.

I read so much on various forums about distance and one thing they all agreed on was not running the full distance as adrenalin and atmosphere would be a huge factor and they were right. Prior to Sunday most we did was 10 miles and we finished it and so you are well on your way.

As for running kit I have to tell you my running kit on the day was shameful as all my old running stuff. I had even had to sew my leggings night before as hole on leg but I knew they were comfy and finished with no blisters or chaffing which was a godsend!! 🀗

Many happy runs back, you got this xxx

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Thanks for encouragement! I guess you should 'never say never' - after all I couldn't run for a bus a 18 months ago & now I'd like to think I could catch it & jump on the back - only a lovely old red Routemaster obviously!! 🏃♀🚌😁

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I’m sure you would look like Wonder Woman doing it too 💃🏻

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Inspirational ⭐

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Many thanks!! 😉

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Amazing! So chuffed for you and your progress. You should be so proud of yourself 🏅🏃‍♀

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Thank you Lou, I am now it’s done and it’s a nice feeling and it’s good to take stock this weekend.

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Wow such an inspiring post. Thank you for sharing your experience

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Thank you 👍🏻 It was bit of an essay but just wanted to share it’s doable. Think Mo Farrah is safe going forward 😉🏃🏜‍♀

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Fantastic job! We must have had a similar C25K journey (April to July) but you’ve really pushed on from then whereas I’m just . . . . . . well still running but . . . . a bit lost to be fair. Maybe I need a challenge or a supportive husband (not a couch one!!). Congratulations- hope you’re progress continues.

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Thank you Sybil! Congratulations on graduating too as that takes commitment and hard work and you’ve done it. 🎉

I felt like that too and was wishing c25k would enlist the celebs and do a 5 to 10k version but alas no. Maybe you could encourage hubby and be his guide through process then sign up for something together or do it with a friend 🀩

With darker nights coming now I think I may look into joining running club as I can run in dark and no one will see me. Plus park runs every Saturday morning offer great chance to meet fellow runners and network.

Good luck with your running and go Sybil you got this 😊👍🏻🏃🏜‍♀Xx

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Wow. You made me cry. That's a wonderful post, definitely no apologies needed. You should be hugely proud of yourself - and your amazing hubbie too. That is a massive, massive achievement and you should be shouting it from the rooftops, not keeping it a secret. Run with your head held high and enjoy. Super well done to you both :)

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Good luck with your run next week, you got this.. go smash it!!! 🏃🏜‍♀👍🏻 X

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It's all been said, well done 😊

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Thank you x

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Amazing post, so inspirational. I've cried whilst reading it because I can just imagine how euphoric you must have felt after such a huge achievement in such a short amount of time from graduation. I'm due to do my graduation run tomorrow and still need to keep pinching myself that I can now run for 30 minutes when, only 8 weeks ago, I found running for a minute so incredibly difficult. Your post, along with the results I've already had from this C25K programme, allow me to dare to believe that, I too, could possibly achieve such amazing things myself. You're so right to be incredibly proud of yourself, I felt incredibly proud of you just reading your post, and I don't even know you !!!! Huge congratulations.....you're amazing !!!

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It was and still is an amazing feeling and I wish I could bottle it and pass it out as such and I guess more special as life hasn’t brought many moments like this my way. I’ve spent so long hung up on what others may think and now I’ve finally realised I can do things just for me.

It’s funny you saying about running a minute being hard as I remember that feeling too. Think sometimes it helps to realise others feel the same which is why this community is so fantastic. No criticism just support and encouragement all the way.

Good luck with your graduation run tomorrow and huge congratulations on a fantastic achievement. You’ve done it, big cwtch 😊 and your amazing!! 🏃🏜‍♀🏃🏜‍♀🏃🏜‍♀🏃🏜‍♀🀗🀗🀗🀗🍟🍟🍟🍟

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Congratulations! I think what you've done is amazing! I graduated around the same time as you & like you, I haven't lost any weight even though people told me I had. I need to lose about 4 stone to be a healthy weight. You have inspired me because the last time I ran was a park run on September 1st. The darker mornings have meant that I've stopped running and I'm starting to feel unfit and lethargic again. You doing the half marathon has made me get my trainers out this morning!! Keep up the good work and well done to you & your hubby on an amazing achievement. 👍

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Blossom I am the same. I haven’t lost any weight but my legs have less orange peel effect and I have a bit of a waist again 🏃🏜‍♀My clothes are the same size but I know they are less tight. I am still classed as obese but I know I’m doing something and not just sat on sofa like I used to. I wish I lived near you and we could go to park run together but if you start going again you will encourage me to start going to mine. Running definitely does give you a more positive mindset and a guilt trip if you don’t go 🀭

So you go girl and please let us know how you get on but you got this. 🏃🏜‍♀🏃🏜‍♀😊😊👍🏻👍🏻

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Congratulations, well done you, and a very inspirational post!

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Many thanks!! 😊

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You're amazing!! Your post brought a tear to my eye. I completed c25k in August and have also lost my way a little since. I still run but not as regularly.... maybe I need to sign up for a challenge?!😏🏃‍♀

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Well done on your graduation 🎓 😊🎉

I am sure you could do it and I think when you have a challenge booked it focuses and gives you something to aim for. I read everything I could on the half and took on board all the advice and it helped.

I’ve even been looking at Santa runs as thinking I could rope a few friends in and have a giggle at the same time and a festive tipple after 🀗 also debating trying a park run soon too so it’ll focus me and as it’s early Saturday morning I’ve no excuse 🀭

Good luck with your future running, you’ve done the hard bit. The future is for you to decide 🏃🏜‍♀🏃🏜‍♀🏃🏜‍♀🏃🏜‍♀

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WOW! We'll done you! I think I held my breath for you reading through your tale of huge determination, and I was feeling your emotion too, the banana 🍌 nearly took me over the edge! Incredible account! 😍

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This is no word of a lie, it was the best banana I’ve had in my life!! 😁 sounds such a silly thing to say but true.

I just wanted to try and convey it’s doable and if I can do it being a chubby middle aged woman anyone can. 😊🏃🏜‍♀

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Great Post. 77 replies and 35 likes says it all . However I do feel hubby is cheating a tad with his drag reduction, streamlined hair cut.

And Parkruns are a really good way of kicking off the weekend. Just finished today's: - I made two new friends, chatted with two or three others and had a really nice relaxing cup of coffee with my wife and the dog in town. Managed to high five 3 volunteers on the way round as well as a youngster who went under 30 mins for the first time.

And then read your post. It's going to be a good day. Thank you

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Aaw love this!! You made me smile 😊 and thinking abut it you are right.

Well done on your park runs and your high fives. I really do need to start park runs especially as our local park is truly beautiful and weirdly where I want my ashes spread 🀔. I’m looking at Santa runs too as thinking that may possibly involve coffee, mince pies and alcohol 🍷 😉

Enjoy the rest of your weekend 😊👍🏻

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LOVE THIS!!! massive congratulations - you’ve done amazingly well and thank you for writing about that self doubt and completely smashing it! 😘❀🏃‍♀🏃‍♀

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Thank you 😊

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Crying with pride and I don’t even know you. WOW !!!! What an achievement. Am going to use your story to inspire me to more ... in my head I am secretly aiming for a 10k and hoping the winter weather isn’t going to hinder my enthusiasm to run but would sooooo love to be able to say I had done a half marathon. Who know what next year could bring if I can keep it going. Well done to both of you. You’re amazing !!! 🏃‍♂🏃‍♀ Just out of interest what was your time ? Not that it matters one little bit cos YOU DID IT!! 👏🏻

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Oh bless you, thank you 😊 I’m not sure what running in autumn or winter as I’m a newbie to it all too. I’m just hoping the winter will make it a bit easier as no one can see in the dark nights and I’ll feel happier venturing out on my own around streets under cover of darkness - hark at me sounding like I’m trying to hide some superhero power and cape!! Time was 3-23 which I was happy with as aim was just to finish before car scooped up anyone outside 4-30. The weirdest thing was though I know I could have got under 3 hours mark but sometimes I just wanted to walk a bit and savour the scenery and the supporters and bands etc plus I’ve never been able to walk or run whilst driving for some reason?!? Next year I’ll aim for under 3 but hubby is already eyeing up 2-30!!

Good luck with the 10k and who knows maybe see you in Cardiff next October 🀩🏃🏜‍♀👍🏻🏎󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿

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Fab-u-lous! What a fantastic achievement for you. You should be well proud of yourself !👏👏👏💐🏅Such an inspiration! thank you.

Your post was brilliant to read so much so I’m even tempted for next year. I’ll be 61 then and I’m hoping to do at least one 10k if not two. I keep saying I’m going to but never do it as I’m not that confident although I do run three times a week and they amount to just over 6K some days.

Two year ago I ran a 5K in the Hereford running festival then in the July of same year I ran another 5K for RFL. So who knows maybe next year🀔🀔

Anyway enjoy your wonderful achievement... you deserve it.🏃‍♀🏃‍♀🀗

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Thank you Peggy and wow go you!! I hope I’ll still have the energy and determination at 60 so hats off to you. But age is just a number and weirdly I’ve more energy now than when I was 30 and think these experiences become more special.

You could definitely do it and what a brilliant foundation you habe to build on with your 5ks. Your putting in the distance in a week so tour body can do it. Best of luck with your running in the future and like you say who knows what next next year may bring for you 🀩🍟👍🏻🏃🏜‍♀

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Oh almost forgot. Great photo of you both!x

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Thank you so much!❀

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This is truly inspirational. I’m sat here thinking of an excuse to go out and do W4R3 because I’m tired and feeling a bit bleurgh. Also I’m hating the five minute runs and thinking I will never get any further. Now, after reading your post and all the comments I’m going to get off my backside and go and do it. I would truly love to run a half marathon and totally relate to your feeling and thoughts relating to self belief - why do I think I can do this etc. I’m goi g now.....

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I always had to run morning or lunchtime at latest as my energy drops as day progresses so good on you and I hope you have a treat waiting as a reward.

Think everyone has bad runs and I remember struggling and wondering how I would run for more than a few minutes but the plan works and you can do it. I started listening to podcasts or audiobooks and found they helped. But believe me when I say you can do this, truly you can.

You’ve got to the last run of week 4 and your next run after this is the halfway week. Your smashing it and think by Christmas you’ll have graduate next to your name and be runnning for thirty minutes!!!! That’s amazing and your amazing!!!! 👍🏻

Go smash it and very best of luck with next few weeks. You got this 🀩🀩🀩🀩

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THANK YOU for your WONDERFUL post JoBC. Huge, huge congratulations. I'm welling up as I write because you've given such a beautiful, and inspiring account of how it can be done, and how the gremlins can be overcome and amazing things achieved. I hope you don't mind me saying how proud I am of you? You're a complete star!

Unlike you, I have long been secretly harbouring a desire to have a go at a half marathon, but haven't done anything about making a start as a big part of me has been rubbishing the idea and saying 'yeah, dream on!' After reading your post I've decided to put those negative thoughts to one side. Once I've pressed 'send' I'm going to look up 2019 half marathons. THANK YOU!

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Oh thank you for such a lovely post, you made me well up!! I tried to be as honest as possible and tell it warts and all but how all my anxieties were swept away during and at end.

I spent so many nights losing sleep worrying about things I had no control over and it consumed me for awhile. But looking back it was all worth it and I wish I was doing it again tomorrow!!!

It’s a cliche but tour right the only thing stopping us is ourselves and you are more than capable of a half marathon. I also kept training in kilometres as found that better than miles and we covered the ground quicker!!

Best of luck with your future running and I hope you do get to do your half next year. You can do this... and dreams do come true... 😁

Ps Cardiff goes on sale Tuesday 🀩🏎󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿 xx

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Aww what a brilliant story my eyes filled up when you got ton the last couple of miles. Well done you. It's great that you've found something you love to do especially as your hubby does it too. Keep going you're brilliant xxx

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Aw thank you Shazza xx

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