Couch to 5K
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Not run in a while


So at the end of last year I was really enthusiastic about the whole running thing and managed to complete the C25K at the beginning of December. Following this I went out for a few 5K runs and was actually enjoying it. The problem now is that I took a break over Christmas, which then turned into the New year and now it's been nearly 6 weeks since my last run. For some strange reason it's now left me quite anxious about getting back out there. I know that once I start again I'll get back into it but just finding it hard to get that initial motivation.

Can anyone give me any advice on getting back in after a 6 week break? Should I go straight back into doing the full 5K or should I go back a few weeks and repeat some of the later weeks in the program.

Any advice would be great.

Thanks guys.


7 Replies

Personally, I'd probably go back a few weeks - maybe to week 6 or so, and build up again from there - but the most important thing is just to get running! ;) Once you're out there again, you'll be able to judge how you feel and see what you can manage.


You are not alone David; there are plenty out there in a similar situation and needing the motivation to start up again. I always advise anyone not running for whatever reason to still visit this forum regularly to keep running in the forefont of your mind and encourage you to get out there again. It really does help reading all the blogs and one of them will spur you into action for sure! :)

I would suggest you just go out and see how long you can run before stopping and then use that as a gauge to see where you want to go back and start at, if you feel that is necessary. You may surprise yourself and realise that you havent lost as much fitness as you thought.

Best of luck!



Thanks for the advice guys it's much appreciated, guess I just need to get out there :-)


I've been doing exactly what Sue said - I'm now on my 3rd enforced absence (yes, I came down with flu after precisely 1 run back after the last break). I've been coming in here to read almost every day - not posting often but still managing to feel part of things.

Each time I've gone back to the running (after 3 weeks, then 2 weeks and next will likely be 2+weeks by the time the cough goes) I've started with the Stepping Stones podcast. That one forces me not to go too fast and I also know that if I don't feel up to the last bit I can break off there (only had to do that once). Since graduating in November I actually have only done the C25K+ podcasts - I'll move on when I get back to being able to do Stamina reasonably comfortably (ha ha, could be a long time).

You really aren't alone with the break - after all, it doesn't always look very inviting out there does it? However, there's no time like the present and today looks good from my window.... or if not today do make an "appointment" with yourself for when you'll get back out there.

Hope that helps



I was in exactly the same situation as you a month ago, except that my break was 6 months not 6 weeks. In the end I told myself to bite the bullet and just get back out there.

I decided that as it was New Year's Day, and I'd over-indulged a tad over Christmas, as well as having had 6 months 'off', I'd go right back to week 1 and see how I got on. It was a great eye-opener. I laughed out loud at the end of the first 60 second run - I couldn't believe how short or easy it was. I ended up running most of the others together in pairs across the 90 second walks. It really encouraged me how easy it was, compared to the first time through.

After that, I did one stab at week 4, which I found easy as well, and then wentr straight back in at week 5. I'm finding it all a lot easier than I did first time round.

My advice - bite the bullet and get back in. The first run will be a bit of a shock, but the others will just get easier. And even the first one won't be as bad as you're expecting!! I'd actually forgotten how much I enjoyed it, and remembering that was the biggest thing I got out of my first one back. Enjoy!! :-)


What a lovely post Stefliser - really encouraging. I bet you felt soooo pleased with yourself!


I have also had a few weeks break from running with christmas and bad weather but after a 4 week break I was still able to pick up where I left off running approx 8km.I wouldn't advise going back a few weeks just try and take up where you left off and see how it goes.Good luck :)


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