i felt like throwing up when I started week 1,... - Couch to 5K

Couch to 5K

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i felt like throwing up when I started week 1, I think it’s too hard but I want to get fit, what should I do?

Redleader profile image
13 Replies

Hi, I am 21 years old but I am unbelievably unfit! I really want to be able to walk upstairs without being out of breathe and I thought couch to 5k sounded good but mid way through the first run I felt as though I was going to throw up so I stopped and took some water and tried again but felt very faint! I have no idea how to do this if I failed so badly on the first one, I really want to get healthy but I feel like my body is old and dead at age 21 !!

13 Replies
ButtercupKid profile image

Welcome to the programme ! First of all, don’t panic. When I started I was also very unfit. I’m carrying an extra person in fat (I call it Ethel), which doesn’t help. On my first attempt at 1:1 I only managed the first 20 seconds of jogging before turning purple and preparing to die. After thinking it through, I started doing two walking paces - brisk, and catch the post office before it closes on Saturday. Once I felt brave enough I began jogging the first 10 seconds of each run, then 20 and so on. It took me nine weeks to conquer week 1, and another three for week 2. Six months and one week to graduate. So it can be done: take it slow and steady, remember that repeats are strategic, not failing, and enjoy your journey x

Kimbov profile image
KimbovGraduate in reply to ButtercupKid

I never knew this about you ButtercupKid. Hats off to you, that’s dedication at its finest. I was full of admiration for anyway but now even more so. How encouraging xx

ButtercupKid profile image
ButtercupKidGraduate in reply to Kimbov

Thanks 😊 I honestly believe that as long as you’re patient with yourself, anyone can do this.

FrankiesMum profile image

I felt exactly the same so carry on. I’m doing week 4 today. Just building myself up. Who’d have thought that last week I’d have been able to run for 3 minutes ..... TWICE. Keep going. It WILL get better

damienair profile image

Stick to the plan and do the 3 runs each week. It’s hard and there are no shortcuts , but nothing which gives amazing health benefits for free is going to be easy.

But I can promise that if you stick to the plan and do it you will be running for 30 mins for 3 times a week.

I did C25K 2 years ago. Like you I was very unfit and really struggled. 2 years later I’m still running and I’m doing 5K runs at least 3 times a week. I’m a Parkrun addict and I’m fitter now in my mid 40’s than I was in my mid 20’s.

If it was easy everyone would be doing it. Stick at it.


MarkyD profile image

Well done for having the courage to change your life. During your time on C25K, remember that each run you do will add one day to your life. Yes. Run for 30 minutes and get an extra day added to your life. It is the best thing that you can do for your health.

If you found W1r1 a bit too much, you may want to consider a few weeks of conditioning your body for running. Over the next 2 weeks, go out every day and walk W1r1. The program has you running slowly for 60 seconds, with brisk walks in between. Instead you can try walking (when the program wants you to walk briskly) and walking faster (when the program wants you to run slowly). Since this will be a non-impact exercise you can do it every day for the next 2 weeks. It'll be great to get you in the habit of "going out for a run" and it is going to get your body conditioned for when you start C25K properly. Give it a go, and post back here frequently to let us know how you are getting on.

Sophia1712 profile image

Hi Redleader! Well done for getting out there. The intervals of week 1 give the impression to a newbie that you should run quite quickly...because its only a minute's worth of running, right?! Well, that minute turns out to be quite hard doesn't it? Top tip and this applies for the whole programme; slow right down.

Try to hold a conversation (even if its only with yourself). If you cannot do this and are gasping for air, then slow right down. You can do this. You have youth on your side for a swift increase of fitness, so stick with it. Good luck!

AlasdairW profile image

I struggled with the first couple of weeks, but persevered. One thing I have noticed is that even though you’re only doing a little bit of running at a time, it quickly makes a big difference to your fitness. I would never have imagined when I started that just 7 weeks later I’d be as fit as I am.

This program will definitely help you reach your goal of getting up those stairs without being broken!

Good luck, and feel free to break down those runs like Buttercup suggests. Also, go as slowly as you are able to during the running - it makes a huge difference.

Remember, the only failed run is the one you didn’t attempt.

Happy Trails

SlowLoris profile image

It can be hard but it is not too hard. The hardest bit is getting out the door. You've done that. For a start go much slower when you run. (Yes you can run slower!) Then persevere. This is a nine stage program. Stay on stage (Week) one until you are ready to move on. Your aerobic fitness will improve quite quickly. Keep posting so we know how you're getting on.

Rainbow2019 profile image

Firstly congrats on joining the challenge! I didn’t manage all of the 1st run in week 1. I resolved to keep trying and take things at my own pace. Be proud of your achievements how ever small they are. And pace yourself! That’s the biggest thing I’ve learned so far. My run is slower than my brisk walk at the min but it will all come in time. Percivere. You will feel amazing when you look back at what you have achieved! Keep at it. Rome wasn’t built in a day. Maybe walk some of the running parts and don’t put pressure on yourself. You are doing a fantastic job just getting out there!! Good luck

Elfe5 profile image

Hi there & welcome! 😀 good for you wanting to improve your health and fitness-I wish I had discovered this program at the age of 21 rather than 58! It was a revelation to me when somebody told me that you can run as slowly as walking pace- slow running is very good for you!

I agree with the advice you have already been given, take this gently at your own pace & get ready to have your life changed for the better!😄

DiscoRunner profile image

You can do this but there a few good tips to remember. Drink plenty of water (a couple of litres a day) on run days and rest days. You can repeat runs if you want, but if you can complete a run, you’re ready to move on. This is about learning to run for 30 minutes - speed and distance can be worked on later. The trick for me was learning that my brisk walk could be faster than my run, and then I learned this running technique - m.youtube.com/watch?v=9L2b2... It’s low impact, gentle style of running and it turned everything around for me. I thought I was going to die on that first run, so don’t worry, a lot of us started out very unfit and have slowly gained a strength and stamina. You can too! Keep posting - if you have any questions someone will have the answer. Stick with it - it’s an amazing journey!

IannodaTruffe profile image

Welcome to the forum and well done on getting started.

This guide to the plan is essential reading healthunlocked.com/couchto5... and includes advice on the recommended easy conversational pace.

This plan works so follow the instructions.

Enjoy your journey.

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