Years ago I tried running regularly, initially HIIT and down the line couch to 5k, but I really had to force myself to do it and could never stick to it for long. I didn't enjoy it much and my main reason was to be slimmer.
More recently, I started running maybe once or twice a month, usually to 'run off' some anger or because I wanted to go to the park. No pressure at all. I ran for as long or as short as I felt like. I loved the way it made me feel - free and strong and able - and how it got me close to nature which I love.
Then I fell into a depression. And I withdrew from my social life and hobbies, including my regular beloved dance classes. After the initial weeks of complete inertia I decided to start couch to 5k to help my mood and give me some sense of achievement amidst all the feelings of failure.
I really feel like I couldn't have started this or be maintaining it if I hadn't let go of all my pressured reasons for running (must have a flat tummy, should run because it'll solve my depression, should run for at least x minutes x times a week) and gotten in touch with how enjoyable it is without being a means to an end.
Now I'm on w6r3. I had a two week break when I had the flu, and didn't even have a fleeting thought of giving it up or being disappointed at having to take longer to finish. I'm still going through this depression, still not able to face the world, but this program has been a light in my darkness. Especially these forums - it feels really...connecting, to see shared experiences and support...like I'm not running alone.