Couch to 5K
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Week 1 Run 1

I have just done my first run and i am feeling mighty proud of myself. Im only mid 20s but at school i never ran, i would walk off with the other girls and smoke, needless to say i got quite fat.

Ive been yo-yo dieting since being at school and never really done any exercise apart from walking etc.

The first two runs i couldnt manage the 60 seconds and starting feeling really deflated and didnt think id do it, after that i managed all the 60 second runs and even at some points i wasnt needing to stop... towards the end of though i kept saying "keep going keep going" LOL.

Midway though i couldnt breath whilst i was walking, i just physically couldnt get the air in and felt something was blocking my airway and lungs and went all dizzy.... Would that be cause im just so unfit (i do smoke and i am not asthmatic) and a smoker or should i becareful on my next run?

7 Replies

Well done for getting this far. You might want to have your doctor check you out.

You've already made progress by managing to do some 60 sec runs. In the early stages take your cue from Laura - it's just a gentle jog in the run segments.

Stick with it and share your experience on the blog.


I think you should carry on with week one until it becomes comfortable and concentrate on a slow steady pace that doesn't leave you totally spent. This should stop you feeling as if you can't get your breath.

The smoking must have an impact on your lung capacity, so if I were you I would think about giving up and spending all the money you save on some wow trainers or col running geer. This is your new life and you are going to feel amazing and have a new confidence.

I hope this doesn't sound too bossy, I know how difficult it is and my downfall is food even though I know it's easier when I don't weigh as much, can I stop stuffing my face? No! I wish you all the best and let us know how you get on. X


Well done for completing your first run.

Take it steady. Take it slowly. Listen to Laura! If you need to slow down, then do. If you keep feeling dizzy and are worried then see Doctor.

It sounds like you have made a step that I found difficult at every stage of this programme (am currently week 7). And that is making the change in your head/inner monologue from 'I don't think I can do this / I can't do it' to one that says 'I think I CAN do this / Come on me! / Just keep going'.

Smoking will make a difference to your prob don't need anyone on here to tell you that. So, maybe that's another important change you can think about making when your ready.



Hi, I'm 29 and an ex-smoker. I gave up mid 2010, after 14 years smoking. Your description of not being able to breathe really resonated with me as I used to feel like that running for a bus! And yes, unfortunately I would say that smoking is a big part of this (based upon how different I feel now). I don't know how many you smoke a day, or whether you want to give up at this point (you have to really want to do it - it is a big challenge), but doing this will help build up your fitness - just take it slowly and in your own time. Send me a PM if you decide to quit and want someone to talk to :)


it might be that the difference between your walking pace and your running pace was too high. Dizzyness is a sign of hyperventilating so try to make your warm-up and interval walks as brisk as you can and your run just needs to be a bit faster than that. The walk is meant to improve stamina too. However, you did do week 1 r1 so very well done and I bet, if you slow down, you will be able to do w1r2 :)


Thanks everyone for your replies :) i was actually surprised with my breathing, i only starting coughing when i walked in my front door and started to burn up. I hate smoking with a passion, and have cut down a lot.

I did quit a few years ago for 3 months and then i put on so much weight it was unreal, so i started again and i think that is what is partly holding me back, plus that i dont want to set myself up to fail by making massive lifestyle changes all in one go. I might give the e cigarette a go - rollertoaster - i will be taking u up on the offer... i need support from some-one... not even getting support for doing this or changing eating habits... everyone laughed and said didnt think id do it! I can walk for miles and i walk pretty fast anyway, i think i over analysed the running part and at points i thought the 60 seconds was up before it should be. Anyway ive allowed myself at least two weeks on week1 to make sure im ready to up my game, as much as id love to do it in 9 weeks, i need to listen to what my body is saying! x



I've just started the Couch to 5k programme too and if you want a support buddy I'm happy to help. I smoke a bit and am rather overweight however I can walk for miles but it's not making a difference to my weight + still feeling rather unfit!

I'm aiming to run a 10k run in May for charity so I have a goal to aim for. My husband has tried e-cigarettes and they worked well but after a couple of weeks fell by the roadside and started smoking properly again.

Feel free to message me.

I'm also on myfitnesspal too.


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