I've been told to stop: Throughout couch to 5k I... - Couch to 5K

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I've been told to stop

LauraD74
LauraD74
23 Replies

Throughout couch to 5k I experienced coughing after jogs, my doctor advised I see the asthma nurse. The nurse has told me to give up jogging because I'm too heavy (17stone) and said i will wreck my ankles and hips within 6 months.

I'm very sad as I've managed to get to week 7 run 1 but then decided to jog 25 mins with a 5 min walk half way through as I found the long jogs a bit difficult.

I have really enjoyed doing this and I have never enjoyed exercise.

23 Replies
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Hidden
Hidden

What about walking, can you do it OK?

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LauraD74
LauraD74
in reply to Hidden

Yea I have no problems walking, I even dance non stop for hours when out but running just seems to make me cough.

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Hidden
Hidden
in reply to LauraD74

Maybe you could try power walking.

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linda9389
linda9389Ambassador

Hmmm 🤔. Was the nurse advising you to give up running purely based on weight, or was the asthma a part of her reasoning? I don't know anything about asthma, and I have no medical qualifications, but I am surprised to hear someone saying you can't run just because you are overweight! Is it worth you getting a second opinion? (from a medical professional of course - not from me 😂) - it seems such a shame for you to have to stop, especially if you were enjoying it.

8 likes
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LauraD74
LauraD74
in reply to linda9389

I think she felt I was pushing myself too hard and I should do something just to raise my heart rate a little.

I'm thinking of perhaps combining jogging with swimming, walking and I have a bike at home.

Jogging has given me a bit of confidence (I began toning up!!) and the desire to eat healthy and lose weight, so this experience has been amazing.

6 likes
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linda9389
linda9389Ambassador
in reply to LauraD74

It's always a great idea to cross train if you are running. Swimming, cycling and walking will be great cross training - they will help tone you up further and strengthen the muscles you use when running/jogging with less impact on your joints. So your plan should all work together nicely. Feeling fitter really helped my confidence too, even though it was a long time before I lost any weight - feeling toned made a huge difference.

Heart rate may be a problem (running very slowly helps to keep heart rate down), but I do take issue with her 'wrecking your ankles and hips' comment🙄

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Jell6
Jell6Graduate
in reply to linda9389

I also take issue with the wrecking comment.

Some people just assume that running is damaging.

I am a registered nurse, and if her advice was from the point of "asthma specialist" I would heed it, but otherwise I would carry on with a modified programme, especially as LauraD74 is enjoying it and feeling the benefits.

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GoogleMe
GoogleMeGraduate

I expect if you go and see someone different they will, shall we say, make a very different recommendation.

Running with asthma can be a real issue and requires careful management but there are plenty of people here who do it, with various tweaks.

But if you've understood correctly what she was saying about weight and impact on joints, I think honestly she was just spouting off the top of her head rather than giving evidence based professional support for your health and well being. Did she discuss C25K with you? Did she discuss what surface and footwear? In my view no health professional confronted with someone who is overweight and wanting to exercise should be saying "Stop X" without spending the time to suggest appropriate alternatives.

I sometimes find it quite useful to write the person a letter documenting what I have been told and copying it to a few people. Sometimes seeing things in black and white that just fell out of their mouths is a wake up call. Or there has been a misunderstanding.

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Murgatroyd

I developed post exercise asthma after having a virus a few years ago. My doctor gave me a blue inhaler to use and I just have a quick blast of that before I head out for a run and that does the trick - no more coughing afterwards. Don’t give up running if you’re enjoying it. I’m also overweight but I feel so much better when I run regularly- it’s when I don’t that I get aches and pains in my back and my knees. If anything it strengthens your muscles and helps to support your joints.

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Madge50
Madge50Graduate

I’d agree with the others, just take a step back a moment and put this comment into context.

As already mentioned most comments like this come from non runners, and that’s really a shame. To be honest I don’t think the nurse knows what they’re talking about. And, with the greatest of respect, a nurse is not a doctor, and I’d question whether they are qualified to make such a comment.

What exactly are they basing this statement on? If it really has rattled you, go back to the GP and get a second opinion.

I hope you keep going, you’re doing brilliantly, and you will reap the rewards of this exercise.

Mx

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Realfoodieclub

Over the years I have seen many doctors and nurses because of being a kidney donor. Some are actively enthusiastic about my running, some indifferent and like you one who said I shouldn’t run because I have arthritis. I’m glad I had been running for a few years and seen other doctors and nurses before I met the nurse that told me I shouldn’t run because of my arthritis, I know the nurse very well and we get on, it was a throw away comment to her as she was a kidney nurse so it was not a diagnostic suggestion, just her opinion, Did your doctor say stop running before you saw your asthma nurse?

I agree with others, If the nurse said don’t run just yet for asthma reasons then take heed otherwise I would seek a second opinion. I run walk because my heart-rate slides something to think about for awhile as you get the coughing under control and something to use as a bargaining chip with the health professionals. Ultimately 99.9% of health professionals will do all they can to keep you active.

Ps. My arthritis is so much better since running, my joints have never been so pain free😀.

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iain-strachan

Well I was just over 17 stone when I started C25K. I combined running with cycling and watching the calories using myfitnesspal (it wasn't a harsh regime either). By Week 7 I was just over 16.

I will say that I got a slight knee injury in Week 8, but I don't think it was due to the excess weight - my GP who is a runner himself said that I was over-pronating and that this had caused the knee pain I was experiencing. He recommended going to a running specialist shop and getting the gait analysis done to get proper supporting shoes. Also he said to do lots of leg muscle strengthening exercises because stronger muscles hold the knee joints in place better. The NHS Strength and Flexibility podcasts are good for this. Exercises like wall squats, hamstring and quad stretches are good for this.

So I don't think 17 stone is really a problem! (Having said that I'm now 13 : 7 - but I had other issues demanding weight loss - my blood sugar was in the diabetes range in March - but thankfully now normal. Also, (I'm ashamed to admit it) I used to get breathless doing up my shoelaces because my pot belly got in the way when I bent over. I now often do them up standing on one leg (which develops calf and core muscles).

I don't know what best to recommend about the asthma. I used to be asthmatic but don't suffer any more. I think the best thing is to get a blue inhaler (Salbutamol/Ventolin) for when you get short of breath, and see about a brown one (Becotide) which is a preventer, and may help with the coughing. I used to use both, but no longer take any asthma medication. Your GP would be the best to advise.

If you really want to reduce the strain on knees and hips then look up Japanese Slow Jogging on the Internet. You can take small steps at a faster rate and it greatly reduces the strain.

The NHS support C25K strongly, so it's surprising your nurse made those comments.

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LauraD74

After some bloods I was told I had higher glucose levels and should correct with diet, add that to higher levels of cholesterol also to correct with diet. I suspect my weight is causing the chest issues. So I've changed my diet, I've been kidding myself for far too long.

Congratulations on your weight loss, its a fantastic achievement 😁

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GoGo_JoJo
GoGo_JoJoModerator

I'm very surprised, as the others are, as usually medical professionals are very supportive of anything that aids weight loss and improves fitness.

I was previously classed as asthmatic however these days I'm pretty much cured. I use an inhaler maybe twice a year.

I would go back and discuss what she said with your GP.

Either way, your new found confidence and enjoyment of exercise are great things, don't give up! 👍🏻😁

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Grannytobe
GrannytobeGraduate

I'm shocked but maybe not surprised at the advice you got. I do hope you get a 2nd opinion. The physical and emotional benefits you are getting from running sound huge. Good luck and please let us know what you decide.

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Allymally1

Maybe talk to someone else at your practice. The nurse probably isn't that aware of the c25k programme. Maybe you can see a Dr in the practice who runs? I'm a nurse and also an asthmatic. It is actually helping my asthma I would say. If you carry on it's really important you listen to your body make sure you take the rest days. I often take more than 1 rest day. Good luck

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IannodaTruffe
IannodaTruffeAdministrator

There is plenty of evidence that running strengthens joints, however carrying extra weight means that following the advice in the guide to the plan healthunlocked.com/couchto5... on minimising impact is crucial.

There are dozens of runners here who have asthma and each has to deal with it in the most appropriate way for them.

If I were you I would talk to somebody else.

I actually thought that we had got beyond the days of people being advised to give up running, unless it is totally unavoidable.........your situation doesn't sound like that.

The benefits from running, which you have already experienced, are hard to achieve in any other way........both mental and physical..........don't give up on those easily.

You are far more likely to lose that extra weight by continuing to exercise to the extent that you will want to eat a good balanced diet to enhance your running and continue to feel good about yourself.

Please get a second opinion.

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LauraD74

Thank you everyone, well you know what, I took my blue inhaler before my exercise today and took part in my first park run. It’s a lot harder outside and I ended up walking most of it with bursts of slow jogging. I finished in an hour and I felt so proud. Nothing else will give me that feeling so I am just going to continue but take care. I’m off for a jacuzzi and swim. Thank you all for your kind words and support 😁

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LauraD74
LauraD74
in reply to LauraD74

Actually the results came in as 54 mins!! 4th from last 😂😂😂

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IannodaTruffe
IannodaTruffeAdministrator
in reply to LauraD74

Stick with it, nice and slow and steady and you will reap the rewards.

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Buddy34
Buddy34Graduate
in reply to LauraD74

Congratulations on your first parkrun. LauraD74 you should be so pleased and proud . 😊😊

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iain-strachan
iain-strachanGraduate
in reply to LauraD74

Congratulations on your first Parkrun. They are marvellous occasions and everyone is so friendly and supportive.

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AncientMum
AncientMumGraduate

Many many congratulations on your first parkrun and for sticking with it 👍 I'm asthmatic and love my running. Dame Kelly Holmes is asthmatic and so, I believe, is Jessica Ennis-Hill (although I could be wrong about her) and nobody told them not to run. As has been said before, running with asthma is all about management, making sure you take any steroid brown (preventative) inhaler regularly and always carrying your blue (reliever) inhaler. A blanket ban on running isn't helpful at all. Good luck.

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