My 1 year runniversary! : Hi, I thought I'd pop... - Couch to 5K

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My 1 year runniversary!

โ€ข9 Replies

Hi, I thought I'd pop back to this forum on this historic day. A year ago today, I decided to have a last-ditch attempt at running, after 30 years of repeated hope, dreaming and quick, depressing failure. I found the Couch to 5k app and then this wonderful forum. I was initially feeling overwhelmed as I didn't think I could run for more than 30 seconds but the C25k wanted me to run for a WHOLE MINUTE to start with! Cripes. Initially, I laughed cynically at that seemingly over-ambitious concept.

I remember the first few weeks, feeling like death warmed up, yet elated after each run because I had done it. My breathing was terrible, my chest hurt and I got lots of stitches. I specialised in the looking like I'd run a marathon after only a few minutes. I didn't tell anyone that I was doing it because I thought I was doomed to failure and until I got that graduation badge, I wasn't celebrating anything - there were still a lot of weeks in which to fail, in my eyes. Luckily, I am quite determined, competitive and stubborn when it comes to achieving goals.

That week when there was, what seemed like, a huge leap to running 20 minutes non-stop seemed daunting but I kept faith in the programme and kept running. I managed to build up to running every other day near the end as I wanted to graduate by Christmas, which I did. Had Christmas fallen in the last two weeks of the programme, I would have inevitably been derailed and possibly not got back to it for ages.

Since my graduation, I've kept running. I had some time out earlier in the year due to illness, and another period off again due to further illness. I'm still not the fastest runner in the world and I've never run 5k in 30 minutes, but that's ok as I focus on the enjoyment of running and how it makes me feel. When I have a bad run, I remind myself that a year ago, running for a minute felt like pushing my limits, so even if I feel rough after 10 minutes, that's a success for me. I recommend that if anyone here ever feels inadequate as a runner or thinks they should be doing 'better', look back to when you were on that metaphorical or literal couch and notice that you're already so much further forward. Be kind to yourself.

In September, I ran a 10k race and completed it in 1 hour and 8 minutes. I was so chuffed with myself. I'd entered in May as motivation to keep me running and give me something to aim for. It was an amazing experience and if you'd told me a year or so ago that I'd be running a 10k race non-stop, I'd have laughed at you and bet my life savings that it was beyond my capabilities.

So, for everyone who's still on the C25k journey, keep going! You are more than capable of doing what I've done. Don't deviate from the programme and don't run consecutive days, stick to the set distances, walk/stop when you're told to, get proper running trainers fitted in a proper running shop, and start to watch out for signs of addiction to buying running gear (tip: shop in Aldi for great sports gear that doesn't leave you bankrupt).

Thank you to all the people who supported me on my C25k journey and to the amazing forum founders/moderators (or whatever the proper term is!). I found it so motivational to be able to access this support, share stories and hear other people's tales. Thanks again! :-)

I hope this post continues to inspire others who are in the same position as I was a year ago. You can do it!

9 Replies
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I think a lot of us will identify with many of your points, Joanne. It does seem daunting at the outset, and it takes commitment, but the rewards are huge. 1 hour 8 minutes is a fantastic time for 10k - happy runniversary! ๐Ÿ˜€๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ‘


What a lovely, inspiring post. You must feel so proud of yourself and rightly so. Thank you for sharing your thoughts and all the best for your running in the future!

Oh, massive congrats to you, such a wonderful achievement. Iโ€™m sure you donโ€™t recall but we started c25k together and I too was heading for 10k. However, in May I sprained my ankle and havenโ€™t run since ๐Ÿ˜ฅ๐Ÿ˜ฅ. Iโ€™m so disappointed with myself as I have gained weight and feel very deflated having to begin again but your post has inspired me to do just that! Like you, Iโ€™m quite competitive so hopefully your achievement will give me the motivation I need to begin again. Once again, weโ€™ll done, you should be incredibly proud of yourself ๐Ÿ†๐Ÿฅ‡๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿผ

in reply to feebe

Hi feebe, donโ€™t be put off by an injury- I have had a very interrupted first year & done the program 3 times after illness or injury. It has been frustrating to have so many hiccups, but Iโ€™m glad I persevered. Lots of people post as they re-run C25K- you are not alone. Xx ๐Ÿ˜„

in reply to feebe

Hi feebe, I recognised your name immediately! It's good to hear from you. I'm sorry to hear about your sprained ankle - but it must have healed by now? If so, can I say in a gentle, kind and firm way, get yourself off that couch! And better to do it now before the winter really sets in and then your mind will be giving you 1001 excuses as to why you should wait until Spring. I had about a month off around April time and then another month in May/June. As I'd booked for 10k in mid-September, I felt I had no choice but to get out there again in June after I returned from my holiday. I think that probably saved me from lapsing for any longer. The first two weeks were tough but my fitness then returned and the rest is history. I thought that even if I walked part of the 10k, or walked-ran sections, then it was still an achievement (and the only way is up, right?). I exceeded my expectations.

Maybe find a 5k race to do in the Spring to motivate yourself, or even a 10k in the next year. Which one do you fancy? (I recommend a flat one!). I'm not sure where you live but hope a flat route is somewhere within reach. There is definitely a lot of hope for you because if you'd totally given up, then you wouldn't even be reading this forum! I can't wait to hear that you're back on the road again ASAP!!!!! You can do it, honestly.


Hi, happy, happy runniversary!!๐Ÿ˜ƒItโ€™s good to hear from you again and thank you for sharing your story. Enjoy year two of your running adventure! ๐Ÿ˜€


Happy runniversary! Great to read about your year... great 10k time too... keep on running and loving it.


What a lovely post! Thank you. Honest, gentle, and most of all inspirational. Brilliant. Thanks for sharing!!

Thank you so much! If I hadn't read your wonderful post this morning, I wouldn't be doing my run today. I have already restarted 3 times due to illness/injury, and a fall on Friday has given me sore knees and a sprained elbow. Well, thanks to you, I am going to persevere. Best of luck to you and all the others who keep trying!

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