Couch to 5K
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It's bright and shiny at the Hall household today! Counting my blessings!

I'm sure by now most of you have read Steve's (smhall's) blog. Steve has such a sense of humor and such a way of looking at things, that at times I get totally aggravated with him...such was the case when we signed up for this last organized 5K. He wanted to sign up immediately when learning about it! Me, not so much! :-( It was going to be in our hometown and all the insecurities started popping up...I'm not good enough...what if someone I know sees me...the route by far would be our most difficult yet...the list could go on and on. Being the great wife I am... ;-) I okayed the deal and told him to sign us up. Not feeling good about it, I agreed to do something I really had no desire to do but I knew Steve wanted to. The week of the run, we ran the route twice. The first time was difficult but okay, the second time was very rough for me...

Race day comes...I open my eyes to see Steve's sweet, grinning face and for him to ask me what I hear outside...WIND! :-( Once I even told him I heard the Wicked Witch of the west hit the house! In stepping stones, Laura does the count... 1,2,3,4...this led to me all day ranting and aided by PMS... I went through the house, but mine went, dumb, stupid, crazy, people...every so often tossing a damn and idiotic into the mix. ;-)

Our daughter went along to see us off and I had my SIL and BIL show up to encourage and cheer. Steve and I said our usual and a kiss, just in case one of us has a heart attack mid- run. The horn blared and off we went...and off they went...from the get-go, I was winded and having breathing issues, but I kept running! At times I felt like I was running forward only to have the wind blow me back a foot or so...up slopes and hills all the way. The first half mile seemed like an eternity as well as every 1/2 mile after. Usually my last mile I can even tell myself I am going to make it, only 1 mile left. Not the case this time! I was so caught up in just getting through the run, honestly I never once checked my watch after the 3/4 mile mark! I trudged along...telling myself, I think I can...I know I can...trying to encourage myself by affirming I have only been running 3.5 months. On the backside of the run, I did look at my time and I knew Steve was probably finishing if he ran at his usual pace. Very proud of all he has achieved, I continued on. As I was nearing the end of the run, Steve came and met me to do our customary finish. I kept telling him that I didn't think I could finish. With his encouragement and support, I made it up the last hill and on to the finish line. THANK YOU SWEETIE! :-) Later in discussion, he took it as I was wanting to quit...what I meant was, physically, I didn't know if I had it in me to finish. He should know by now I have a bit of a stubborn streak! ;-) I truly do not know if I could of continued on another few feet, this run drained me beyond belief, it was absolutely horrible!

Steve and I both did a PB through the finish line! We stayed for announcements and we both earned medals in our age group. Steve/Men's third place and myself/Women's first place. :-) (The pic is of one medal) So it is bright and shiny at the Hall household today!

So, enough of some of my griping about the run and not fully appreciating my medal! This is the week of our Thanksgiving holiday here in the States and this is what I'm thankful for:

THIS COMMUNITY: without all of you, Steve and I would not be where we are at this very moment. We easily would of been discouraged and right back sitting on the couch.

OUR KIDS: they offer support with our running and even though they don't say it, they think we are are crazy. :-) They encourage us and even tell us they are proud of us.

MY PARENTS & STEVE'S DAD: all have passed, but because of their health problems, I decided to make some life changes, which led to C25K.

MY HEALTH I take for granted the health I do have. So many people would love to walk/run but can't.

MY PRETTY GRADUATE BADGE: even though I have a gold medal to show for my run this past week, my virtual Graduate badge is the one that I feel the most proud of. This badge was earned by all the weeks of self doubt, tears, struggles and finally finishing something I started. I was determined not to quit even through aches, pains and injury. When I look at my badge, I have a sense of achievement knowing I finished what I set-out to do.

STEVE: The Lord has blessed me with a wonderful husband and now running partner. Since our marriage we have had many of life's obstacles tossed our way. Through all of it, I am very proud to have him as my life partner. Thank you Steve for being my one and only, for coaching me and believing in me even when I am filled with negative thoughts.

My list could actually go on and on when I stop and think about it. :-) :-) :-)

Sometimes we take for granted what is right before our eyes. I still have the self doubt and insecurities and wanting to preform beyond my ability, but I truly am very blessed in all I have and all I am able to do.

Thank you again to this great Community, because of all the advice, support and motivation here, we continue on with our journey. I am proud to have all of you as my running friends!

Gayle :-)

35 Replies

Thank you (and Steve) for sharing such a wonderful and inspiring blog. I have just started the C25K journey (W3 starts tomorrow) but I will think of your blog when I have to face my own doubts. Well done on your achievement.


Thank you PeaBea! Make sure you stay on here and post! Best wishes for week 3!


Congratulations Gayle - very well done on an amazing achievement :-)

It can be easy to suceed when things are a downhill run - but to persevere and overcome challenges when things are hard and an uphill struggle - that is truly inspiring and worthy of admiration - well done you!

First place and a medal - I know they don't compare to your blessings - but pretty cool anyway!

Thank you for sharing such a lovely blog :-)


Thank you Goldstar!!!! It is truly amazing what we have all achieved if we look at the big picture. Wishing you continued success as well! :-)


Lovely blog Gayle. You must be so proud of each other, both with PBs in this run!

Good for you completing the run.

I hope for a wonderful Thanksgiving in the Hall household. It is so true, that we are lucky for the mobility that we have.

Your posts are an inspiration, keep running and keep writing about it!



Thank you Anna! Thank you also for the Thanksgiving well wishes. We are all truly blessed in different ways. I hope you can find relief and can be up and running soon!!!!!


Great, Gayle! Loved both your blogs - very inspiring and thought provoking!

Now for the next challenge! What have you got in mind for yourselves? Keep us all posted, please!

Best wishes :)


The next step is recovering these old muscles and bones! ;-) In fact, as I ran through the finish line, the girl removing the bottom of the run number high fived me. As we high fived, I told her "I'm too old for this sh*t!!! I think I will stay challenged enough concentrating on 5K's and getting through them without making myself nauseous. :-) Are you going for a 10K?


Huge congratulations to you and Steve. What a fantastic partnership you have - supporting each other so well has given you both such well deserved rewards.

Thank you for sharing all you are thankful for - it's a great reminder to us all.

Enjoy all of your celebrations. I'm raising a glass to you from here.



Thank you GoldenOldy!!!! Please continue to post here and all of your well wishes is appreciated! We are all in this together!!!!


Honestly you two!! Brilliant blogs - so inspiring - but do you have to make me cry every time??! :-) Amazing achievement Gayle - Huge congratulations on that medal and PB - thank you so much for sharing - I have had some really bad post grad runs - but on the back of this am setting my alarm again tomorrow and getting out there. Thank You for keeping us all with you.

Happy Thanksgiving S xxx


Ahhhhh...thank you so much! Sorry to make you cry! Running continues to be a struggle for me, I have one good run out of quite a few bad ones. I wish we had a magical pill to take that would instantly turn us into seasoned runners! :-) Not the case! How truly amazing is it though that we are where we are considering when we started C25K? Wishing you running success!


Amazing blog and amazing run for both of you! Your running just bets better and better, there's no stopping you! Raising a toast to you pair of lovely inspiring people! :)


THANK YOU! THANK YOU! I can't believe we have progressed to where we are now. The program and you guys here deserve all of the credit. Thank you for always posting such inspirational blogs!


Always love reading both your blogs Gayle and Steve, inspiring and what a brilliant achievement! Keep 'em coming! Susie :) x


Thank you so much Susie! How's the shins doing? I hope things are going better for you!!!!


Hi Gayle, was going to go today (Wednesday) but venturing out tomorrow. Still scared, but haven't run in nearly 3 weeks, I think it is time!!

S:) x


Dear Gayle & Steve....I LOVE YOU GUYS....!!!! SERIOUSLY....You are both just so inspiring and CONGRATULATIONS on your new shiny medals and your PB's....just B R I L L I A N T !!

Please don't stop blogging as you are the hilight of my day/week, always wondering what you guys are up to....

Pinkus xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx


We love you too pinkus!! :-) :-) We promise to not stop blogging as long as all of you are willing to put up with our "bull" and you also promise to stay on here and blog! :-)


What a wonderful, moving and inspiring blog! Congratulations on your medals, you certainly earned them. I am going to use this as motivation for todays day of doom run - w5r3 eek! Thank you sharing this with us, I will be taking you both with me and playing this over and over in my head today. Please get me through this! This was a ray of sunshine on a very grey, wet and foggy morning. Louise



Wow! I just read your blog earlier!!! GREAT GOING! ABSOLUTELY BRILLIANT!!!!


You guys are just great and what an inspiration! Congratulations on the medals and PBs - what an achievement, especially with the wind!

Love reading your blogs - keep running and keep writing! x


Thank you so much!!!!! We promise to stay on as long as everyone is willing to put up with our little bit of seriousness and a whole lotta "bull" ;-)


Hey Gayle, I am soooooo impressed with you! First place in the ladies under 21's (that is your age group right?!!) A-MAZ-ING!! I dont know how you did it in the wind, I just hate running in wind, and then hills as well and then to top it off, not really wanting to do it in first place....Gritty determination for sure!

But you did it with the support of your Steve and your family and all your friends here too!

You have every right to feel proud! Enjoy the moment and the glory - you deserve it!

Happy Thanksgiving to you both!

Sue xx

p.s. is the medal on a pink ribbon????


Thank you Sue!!! YES!!! SURE!!! under 21!!! Yes, that's right!!!!! ;-) More like 21x2, plus tax!!!! ;-) thinks I like the idea of a pretty pink ribbon on my shiny gold medal...I wonder if Steve would like a pink one too? ;-)

I'm not sure about gritty determination, more like the stubborn back-end of a mule!

Thank you so much for the Thanksgiving wishes as well! When I count my blessings, you are right in the mix. :-)


Wonderful :) You are still inspiring me, every time I read your blogs. Congratulations and Happy Thanksgiving to both of you. Sharyn xx


Aaaaahhh, thank you Sharyn!!!! I can't believe I inspire anyone, if anything, I know you have inspired me!!!! Signing up so early in the program to run 5K's!!! Thank you so much for the Thanksgiving well wishes!!! Like I told Sue, you guys are right there when I'm counting!!!! :-)


Wow how fantastic a PB and a 1st place in the wind I can't believe it well done to you and Steve. Your blogs are so honest, funny and inspiring thank you for sharing your experiences with us, you encourage me to keep going even if it is very tough!! I wish you a happy Thanksgiving and good luck with your future runs, please keep blogging :-D


Oh Rophie, thank you! I LOVE your blogs as well and you inspire me too! :-) I just stepped outside and it is absolutely still...not one breath of wind! ;-) I'm still aching from the other day...of course I'm positive my age has nothing to do with it! ;-)


Fab blog!!!!! Congratulations on your PB and medal! What an achievement especially as you found it so tough.

let me reassure you the good runs will soon outweigh the not so great ones...take it from someone who has been there and come through the other side. Remembering the good ones is what makes us go keep plodding on. :) :) :)


A wonderful achievement and a lovely blog. Well done indeed :-)


Hi Gayle, I posted a special comment under Steve's post and hope you get to read it as I addressed it 'Dear Gayle and Steve'....

Eventually about to get to do my 9/3 today - all various gremlins permitting. Feeling VERY emotional at the moment as I ran 9/2 in the UK at my parents' - they're now really old and ailing and running that run while I was with them reminded me that I started this (like you) because of seeing my parents' dwindling physical capacities.

So... back from UK, I eventually do my Grad run today if I can keep the tears away... Anyway, I just wanted to say that your list of 'THANKS' echoed my own and I will think of you and yours along with my parents as I run this run.

Love and hugs

Sara xox


bloody hell fire gayle!!

you sure know how to make someone cry! what a lovely post.

happy Thanksgiving to you and yours.

thank YOU for being part of this community and being there for me and everyone when we need support. i think most of us have started this program having had a "nudge" towards it by one thing or another. its why its such a special community.

you have achieved so much - and will continue to do so and meet challenges head on.

your blogs are always lovely to read and entertaining. please keep them coming!!

big hugs



What a wonderful post Gayle, and you should be so proud of yourself for persevering at the run. Yes, your wonderful Steve was there to support and encourage you but it was you that had to dig deep and find the stamina to complete the course.

I love your list of things to be thankful for, obviously in England we don't celebrate Thanksgiving but it is always good to take the time to count your blessings.

You and Steve are such a huge part of this community so I would like to just say a very English thank you to you both for the advice, support and encouragement you gave me during my C25K journey and I'm not sure but is the correct phrase happy holidays???

Enjoy your Thanksgiving - Maria xxx


What a fabulous post. Well done, you are (both) amazing! I bet you never thought that only a few months in you would get a shiny MEDAL for your running :-D

Such an inspiration, happy Thanksgiving to you and your family.



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