Couch to 5K
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No weight loss :-(

Hello all,

I'm female, 5'4" and weighed 205 lbs at the start of C25k.

I work from home and run several businesses so getting in any exercise was always hard. People say it should be easier when you work from home but it isn’t!

I didn’t eat unhealthily in the first place however I was unhappy with my weight and have high blood pressure so really committed to changing this year.

I came across C25k and thought it was ideal. I’m now on week 3.

I do it Monday, Weds and Friday mornings starting at 7:30am in the local country park which is a mix of dirt track and paths, variable terrain with changing gradients. Its hard work and I really feel it working.

It’s motivated me to watch what I’m eating all the more. I haven’t had a takeout since before Christmas. I don’t eat chocolate, sweets, crisps, cake or biscuits – never that bothered by them.

I cook all our food from fresh, no packaged meals, try to get in my five a day etc.

I have a lot more energy throughout the day so I’m doing more housework, walking to the shops, etc.

My sleep patterns have improved; I want to be in bed by 10 to 10:30pm whereas I’d drag it out to way past midnight previously and I get a good 8 hours sleep every night feeling refreshed in the morning for the first time in I can’t remember.

My blood pressure is also nearly normal – yay!

So overall I’m really pleased except for the fact I’ve put weight on!

I put on 1 lb last week and 2 lbs this week when I expected it to be falling off and it’s really demotivating me. I go from doing nothing to this and put weight on!

My husband keeps reminding me of all the positive aspects but I just can’t take my mind off the fact I feel like I may as well not bother!

So why am I putting on weight?

Is it too soon? Is my body in shock? Am I expecting too much?

Please tell me I’ll wake up next week and be 2 stone lighter!

14 Replies

Lots of factors make up body weight. I've pretty much given in worrying about how much I weigh. I'm focused on fat percentage now.

As you exercise muscle mas increases, making you weigh more. Fat will only decrease if you eat less than your body needs to fuel itself. It's a simplistic view, but it is sound.

To be honest, I wouldn't worry about weight just yet. Get to week 9, settle into a routine of running for half an hour three times a week. Then look at your diet. You might find you're already on the right track by then, but don't focus on it now.


am trying to be positive but I have gained and it makes me feel miserable. I am doing WW too with two friends who are losing and I'm not. Have been sticking at the runs and food diet for three weeks now and trying to get motivated to feel good about it. Another thing, my legs feel so so heavy when I run . Does that wear off eventually and I will get into a "zone". I'm 5 foot 8 and 76 kilos. I was diagnosed with clinical depression last year and am hoping exercise will help with that too but the weight gain does not help with depression !. Im wondering whether I should ditch the scales and not worry about it.


overall I've lost only 6lb since starting C25k 5 weeks ago - combined with healthy eating etc, its not a lot considering I went from 0 exercise week

however I do check my measurements and I have lost 9 inches all over from my hips, thighs waist and arms.

So, get the tape measure out and do a weekly measure! Honestly, the muscle is toning you and your body is changing shape as you run, so your body prioritises coping with running (muscle and bone density) rather than losing fat.

Give it a go, and week by week you'll watch the tape measure and how it doesnt lie :)


I agree with mirandababes. I have put weight on, due to Mrs. Beans birthday and lots of chocolate cake. But the key difference is, my tummy has got smaller and my body has become more toned, my trousers are not so tight.

So even though my weight has gone up my body shape is smaller - go figure. Just finished week 4 so could start to see some big changes as the running ramps up.


When I started the program I also gained weight first. But it only lasted 2 weeks. Then I started loosing it.

I'd also say you may have lost inches first and always remember that muscles are heavier than fat :-)

Maybe you drink not enough water and your body starts storing liquids. That happens to me.

After every long run I can guarantee you I will have gained a pound the following day. But it will disappear as quick as it came.

One tip would be to write a food diary. Maybe you eat more of the good things. And even good things have calories :-)

Keep motivated. You achieved so much. Just give your body time to get used to being active.


You'll wake up next week and be two stone lighter :-).

but seriously. Running/cardio isn't really going to make that much difference with weight loss. Unfortunately. Eating healthier has got to be the main thing. That's what worked for me - after 30 years of being overweight and 10 years (or perhaps more) of being obese. I think that one of the most important thing about exercise is that it keeps your metabolism healthy so that you are less likely to have weight yo-yoing. But, like healthy eating the exercise has to become part of your lifestyle.

Do you keep a food diary we could have a look at? I use (the dailyplate section).

All the other stuff sounds good though doesn't it:

Exercise usually helps with blood pressure - you seem to be confirming that, usually helps with energy levels,

usually helps with sleep patterns - again thats working for you.

Generally it helps you get more out of life.

It will probably also help with fending off insulin sensitivity (and that can help a lot with weight loss) but that will come very slowly.

I find exercise makes me eat more, both because I seem to be hungrier and because it probably also allows me to kid myself that I can eat more. I won't be giving up though.


This is the thing, your body shape will change in time. I have reached wk5 r2 since 21/01 and only lost 9lbs but on the plus side i now have a better shape. Must be muscle tone. My clothes are a much better fit. Be positive.


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Well done on getting this far. Most probably you are gaining muscle, so please measure yourself rather than weigh. I know how you feel as I really wanted to shed the pregnancy weight in the process but didnt. However the confidence I have now, coupled with better health (breathing, energy) caused a chain reaction causing me to be confident of making diet changes, doing small bursts of exercises more regularly etc. I am sure by week 9 you will feel like the world is your oyster and you can do and achieve anything. Or maybe it will happen earlier for you. Just hang in there:-)


Hey, I've been having the exact same problem, however I think this depends on your initial weight (I don't know yours so can't confirm this is definitely what might be causing your problem!)

Muscle weighs more than fat. so if you're a relatively average sized person (I'm not, which is why I'm pretty sure this doesn't count for me!) as you do the exercise you get more muscle and less fat, meaning that you seem to put ON weight.

I'm pretty large, so I'm doing C25K and I reckon I should be losing weight due to my size, however I am not. Maybe it takes a few weeks to kick in?

Also, apparently waist measurements and things are more accurate - so maybe we should both be doing that instead - especially considering the muscle heavier than fat thing? I think you can put your measurements in MyFitnessPal (if you have it!).

Either way, don't give up. Studies show that people who don't give up don't give up. Or something.



I ran for a year and saw no weight loss at all. I wasn't terribly out of shape so I started at around 3k and worked my way up to 12 mile runs - still no weight loss. However, I could visibly see that I had less fat around my middle than before so what was happening was that I was shifting some of that fat and putting on a little muscle.

More than that, however, I now feel fitter and stronger at 42 than I have for 20 years. I can chase my children around without getting out of breath and when a friend offered me a game of tennis (not played in decades) I was able to dash about on the court without feeling I was going to die any moment!

Now, at around 18 months, I have actually started losing a little weight but really that's just a bonus - the other benefits were much more important.

If you accept that your new lifestyle involves some regular exercise and a healthy diet then you will benefit and those benefits will continue to accumulate. Weight loss may not be the first of them but don't worry too much about that - your body may take some time to adjust at first but it will come and in the meantime you already have quite a handful of benefits.

You don't need to fix this in a month - you have your whole life to benefit - so stick with it and take the long view. i promise you things will gradually improve in many ways.



Not losing weight can be a total bummer, especially if you're prone to depression, as one poster mentioned because feeling "fat" can really bring you down. I was appalled to hear people saying that running isn't great for losing weight, but I have also seen a lot of very obese people lose a lot of weight through running, so maybe "it depends"!

What i think I've seen more of, and I include myself in this somewhat, is people who care less about the numbers on the scale because they're more confident, they generally just feel better about themselves, they value the very fact that they're DOING THIS CRAZY SH*T! , they see the bigger picture and they settle in for the long haul and are fine with that.

In about 2 months of walking and running (I'm ony in W3) I've lost only 4 or 5 kilos but my weight is very steadily going in a downward direction and that's fine with me. I can feel muscle in places i couldn't before so something good is happening!

What exercise of any kind does do is stimulate your metabolism so you'll burn calories for longer (for some hours after exercise apparently), you'll also tone up, which means you will grow muscle tissue and muscle weights I think 5 times as much as fat......but that will have a slimming effect as it takes up so much less room than fat - hence people reporting that their clothes fit better.

I've also heard people say that when you start an exercise programme you can retain more fluid, possibly through the inflammation of muscles unused to being used and so on....

Please don't give up! There are so many more benefits to this madness than just burning fat!


I only lost 3lb doing c25k, but it hasn't gone back on yet, so it feels like a good solid change. I've also got very good low blood pressure now, something I thought I could only achieve by sorting out anxiety/weight, but exercise is what's finally fixed it. I really wouldn't underestimate the importance of achieving a healthy blood pressure, it's so important. I suggest comparing your weight at the end of the whole 9 weeks with your weight at the beginning - you will definitely see a change. Also waist measurements can be the most telling change of all. So make sure to keep track of that too. I'm now doing the NHS weight loss plan, with c25k under my belt, and all the positive thinking that goes with it. I'm in it for the long haul, and becoming a runner is part of that. Perhaps after you've reached w9r3 you'll feel empowered to make other changes too, and eventually it will all come together, lots of luck! :)


Please don't feel defeated. You are exercising and that is a great thing! At the moment, you are just in the early stages, so your body will be creating muscle mass, and muscle does weigh more than fat.

Try not to focus on the scales. I would suggest taking a picture (or get hubby to) showing of your bare tummy and legs and look at it again at the end of the programme. You will be surprised by how much better your body will look. You perhaps will not notice yourself, because we see ourselves everyday, but compared to an 'old' picture, you will see a difference. Maybe use a tape measure to measure before and after too....

Good luck with the programme and your WW.


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