Couch to 5K
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Guys-there were tears tonight

Pounded the first five minutes. Take that work.

But then the words of Laura sunk in. I've only just past half way and already me legs and lungs had had enough.

All of a sudden my mind went in to defeative mode. I stopped. Walked, started again and made it to the end of that run. Walked, then started again.

Poo pants. I just couldn't do it. The bloody wind didn't help, all in me face, up hill. But I just felt that I wasn't getting anywhere. Not moving. I then started thinking I couldn't finish the program and then I started worrying that I couldn't do the charity run in May...

So I stopped just when Laura said half way. And cried. All the way home.

I just don't know what's up with me. I was ready to go out. Wanted to. Then crashed and burned.

I'm sure it's a blip. I want it to be. But I just don't know what to do. I didn't go too fast. I was hydrated. Why couldn't I do it??!!


Sending myself to bed with my book to try forget, but pearls of wisdom would be greatly appreciated

:- /


20 Replies

Oh dear - sounds like a really tough one. I know you won't want any patronising stuff like "don't worry, it'll be a one off... these things can happen" and all that.

But you know, it's true. Sometimes we have the best experience - everything goes way better than we could hope. Other times, like tonight, it all just falls apart. My advice (for what it's worth) is to have a nice cup of tea and put it down to experience. Have another go in a couple of days and chances are it'll be a lot better. I really hope so. If not, go back a step or in the programme and pick things up from there.

If we're honest, we would all admit to having hiccups from time to time - a year on and I still have them. But we get over the problems and feel better once more. Hope you do too.


Ali, we've all been there, it happens and there doesn't seem to be any reason for it, all the usual platitudes apply - the only bad run is the one you didn't do, etc., etc.

In my experience, I always seem to have a bad run when I'm buzzing from a good one and feeling really confident and my best runs are always after a bad run - work that one out! It's a massive learning curve, this running lark and we are just at the start.

Big hugs and good luck for the next one xxx


I think we have all had little blips, where I seems impossible, I know I have failed a couple of times and walked back feeling terrible and unable to complete the programme! That's when you have to find the positive. You had a shite day a work and still went out to run, just going is impressive enough sometimes, that bottle of wine must have been calling! But you ignored it and went out anyway. You did half the run, could you have done that a few months or even weeks ago? I doubt it. Don't beat yourself up, what you are doing is amazing.

It is not easy but it is possible, chin up, have a day off (running) then get back on the horse at the weekend. I had a really bad day at work a few weeks ago and came within an ace of giving up, but following a "failed run" I then had some of my best runs yet.

Think how proud you and us and your family will be after the charity run in May! You can do it. There are good runs and bad but all can be positive if you chose to view them correctly.


Hi Ali, as above, it's all true!

We all have days when everything seems to go wrong; the wind in your face after a rubbish day at work be proud of getting out there! If your legs and lungs were an issue had you set off at a quicker pace than normal without realising it?

Have a days rest, then get them trainers on and hit the road again; hopefully with the wind behind you, a bit of luck, and positive mental attitude on your side it'll be much better!

Remember, mind over matter - so much of this is a mental challenge, not physical! :-)


Hi Ali, I have to echo everyone's comments it really is as simple as it just being a bad run. We all have them and they are horrible but your next run, or the one after that will be ok and you will have good runs... Remember the feeling coz that is what will get you back out there. Ali


Hello Auntie,

How do you think men and women cope with Marathon running?

For many the Marathon is made up of two halves:

the first 16 miles and the final 10.2 miles

The first half has everything to do with PHYSICAL strength and good preparation,

the second so much about MENTAL strength, the desire to complete the task

and serving a charity with funds by crossing the line.

So where are the tears coming from?

Clearly you are not alone in struggling to improve from NOT fit, to a 5k happy jogger.

Your blog contributions tell a story that whilst perfectly true,

reflect a mental attitude that is clearly not helpful in your training.

Your focus is presently on all the reasons why you CAN'T.

Your stressed out work, your hills, the weather, your body, there is a litany.

Maybe it is time to refocus, to count your blessings,

to think beyond your legs, your lungs, yourself!

There are practical bits that help too.

Get up earlier and run before work.... loads of energy is the reward.

Get a training partner ... fun conversation and discipline the reward.

Run against the wind at the start..... reward: it will carry you home like angel wings to finish.

Take it very easy going up the hills,... reward is gliding down the other side.

Visualise those who will profit from your efforts in May...

their blessings will reward all your tears.

One day you may be ready to take on your first Marathon,

it all begins one step at a time.

"I raise my eyes to the mountain,

from where shall come my help?

My help shall come from The Lord,

who made heaven and earth", and Auntie Ali. xx


Such a beautiful sentiment, vintagepat! Gayle


What they all said! Come on, hon, it was a crap day, it was a crap run, but hey, you'll do it. My advice, for what it's worth, is to realise that when you go out next time you will be worrying about this one. This happened to me a few times on the programme, and I tried - oh, how I tried - to go out for the next one with a really positive, go-get-'em attitude. Don't. It put even more pressure on me, that the next run would be better. Instead, I learned to scale back. If the run should have been 8 minutes, I told myself I'd do 5. When the runs were longer, and I'd 'failed' at the 25 minute run, I went out again and aimed for 15. And yes, of course I carried on and did the longer runs - but I didn't have to and the pressure was off.

I hope life looks better this morning, although if it's anything like here you won't be able to see anything for the wretched snow, which has put paid to my running plans for today. Just look at all the support on here and know that we're all with you. You'll be fine for that run in May. Big hugs, Annie x


Totally echo what everyone else has said, in particular what Annie said, don't set the bar too high for the next run, I had 2 weeki s off due to working nights and being ill, after run 1 of week 9, so after I felt better I was dreading attempting my 2nd hour hour run after such a long gap, so I went out thinkin it'll be fab if I just manage to do 20 mins and I'll just see how I get on, and I managed the 30 cause I didn't feel under pressure if that makes sense. So maybe for your next run go back a step, but see what happens when Laura says Starr walking, youll probably decide to keep running! X


Take it at your own pace , don't worry about the program if you can't keep running walk for a short spell before running again, it might take a while to build up your fitness, don't forget most of it is in the mind, whatever your motivation was to get you started use it when you feel you want to give up. Stick with it , you can do it.


Unfortunately we are all going to have a bad run at some point. Mine was yesterday and I did feel very disappointed in myself. And I suppose for my next run I will have to dig that little bit deeper, as will you. Just believe in yourself and the programme. A few weeks ago you probably struggled with a minutes running so look how far you have already come. :-) If you feel like you need to repeat a the previous week then do so, it's not a race. You will get there honest it might just take you a wee bit longer :-)


Same here! Week 6 was horrible and Week 7 was truly terrible. I stopped dead in my tracks twice trying to do run 1 that week. It was like "What the ?????. Just dead, all of a sudden. Weird. Took me five attempts to get it out the way! I was petrified of what was happening, there was no sense in it! So I took 3 days off before I tried again.....and hey presto, all was ok after that. Like Khrissy I seem to have one truly enjoyable run then a horrible tough one. Try not to over-analyse it. I hope you feel better today. Im sure you will be absolutely fine next time


Poor Auntie. You're having a rubbish time all round at the moment and it's taking its toll.

I agree with everything above but I'm also a great believer in sometimes just needing to have a bit of a wallow in self-pity. Only a bit, mind!

Sometimes, it doesn't matter whatever anyone else says, it's all about how you are feeling. If you're feeling lousy, allow yourself to feel lousy. Give yourself permission to wallow. Spend many happy hours thinking about how crap everything is. Cry if you need to, shout if you have to, swear if it helps (I find it does at times!)

I can guarantee that after a while, you'll be sick of wallowing and want to get back to feeling better and that's when you'll get back out there. Do what Annie said, set the bar low and see how that goes. When you're ready, you'll find the joy again.

Sending hugs {{{{{}}}}}


Ali, Ali, Ali - you have been having a crap time at work, weather was crap, your mood was down and it all took its toll :( Yes, it happens and so many of us here can relate to that feeling of despair, despondency and, dare I say it, failure BUT dont you dare give up young lady!!

It was a blip (soooo glad you didnt use the "F" word! :D ) and your next run will be fine I'm sure and if not, so what, just get out again and keep trying. A good run will come, promise! ;)

I hope today is looking more positive for you and that you can enjoy your weekend without being so hard on yourself! Bring out the vino... but only if you promise not to cry into it! :'(

Big hugs too! ((( )))

Sue x


leave it a couple of days and you'll probably have a great run. Do some cross training in the days in between.


I wrote a long message to you, only to have it disappear. :-( Sweetie, you had a horrible run...just part of being a real runner. Don't let any of that self-doubt take over your mind with silly thoughts. The next run will be better. If not, the next run will...just keep running and KNOW we are here for you. (((HUGS))) :-) Gayle


My heart goes out to you, it's just horrible when you have a run like that. I had a major problem in W8 and just couldn't do it, stopped and walked for the first time in the programme and felt I would never get through. Turned out a couple of days later I was sickening for a really bad cold and had a forced extra few days' break. Did my next run in a completely different setting (the treadmill in the gym) and it was fine. So have hope, you will get there, we KNOW you can do it. I don't like the treadmill but it got me past W8R3 and here I am, 6 months later, still loving running and cursing the weather cos I probably won't be able to run tomorrow with all the snow!

Be kind to yourself, we all understand about those runs which don't go to plan - you will get there. Try something completely different for your next run. Best of luck.


Remember, you haven't failed until you stop the programme altogether. Chin up and best foot forward , you know deep down you will get there. You are a star for keeping on keeping on.


Big hugs Auntie! :)

I had a horrible run yesterday, and it was as if everything I'd achieved for the past few months was gone just like that (it wasn't, but it certainly felt like it for a couple of hours).

You said, "The bloody wind didn't help, all in me face, up hill." That alone could explain it all, on top of having a horrible day at work. Be kind to yourself, maybe have a couple of days rest, and get back out there again, remembering what you can do, rather than what you feel you can't. Setting yourself a small target sounds good - much nicer to then go and do extra, because you're pleased with yourself for doing that bit than to aim high and expect to not get there. Don't feed the gremlins! (And try avoiding wind in your face and hills if at all possible for the next few runs!)

Looking forward to your next blog where you bash the gremlins heads in. :) We're all rooting for you!


Have a gin and start again next week. Sometimes everything is rubbish. Xx


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