Can only jog for a few seconds

So many differing ideas of what a beginner is- how far you can run and what times you can do. Some of us (especially if you are very overweight like me) start from not even being able to jog for more than a few seconds. Don't worry! The important thing is that you have started to think about running and you are making the effort to go a little faster than walking.
I was dismayed when I first saw some of the beginner plans as I couldn't even jog for 2minutes!!. I started by jogging and counting each step- I managed ten. Next time I did 10 jogging steps then walked and a second ten jogging steps.
I went out a few times a week in my ordinary clothes (floral skirt and cardigan)with running shoes on that I had borrowed from my daughter. I didn't count the time or the distance at first. I just kept trying to do more jogging steps in between the walking each time, and repeating the sequence. I pretended I had to catch up with a friend or was trying to get to the postbox before it went etc.
Finally I felt ready to try to do 1 mile which I did- alternately jogging and brisk walking.
As the weeks went by I slowly improved. My stamina has improved.I can now jog for a mile and a half without stopping and have bought myself some running gear. I can also do 10k in 90mins (part jogging part brisk walking)
I am still a beginner and still a few stones overweight- but not as much as I first was.
You CAN do it!! Every step counts- it doesn't matter if it takes you longer to get to race fitness than someone else or even if you bother to enter a race at all. The point is if you stick at it, in a few weeks/months you will be fitter than you were at the start. And that will feel so goodimage-you just might want to continue.image


  • It's wonderful to hear such a heart warming account of your path so far and a huge congratulations for achieving what really is a difficult task.

    So often those of us that have been running for a while tend to forget the pain and dedication it took to actually run, I know I do at times.

    I can feel your passion for running and may it long continue, as I'm sure it will image
  • your timing is immaculate! i'm overweight, and trying to do couch to 5k., and you're right, it IS hard.

     I'm taking it a day at a time, and have managed the first day of week 3; never thought I'd be able to run for 3 minutes.

    It's nice to know that you have made such an improvement, and I find that really encouraging. I look forward to the time when I can jog for 1 1/2 miles image!

  • Love this thread!! Is very inspiring - thanks!!
  • If you are very overweight(I'm about 4stones overweight) you are supposed to consult a doctor first which I didn't, but I did speak to a friend who's a PE instructor and they said I would be OK to take it slowly which I did.
    I'm glad there are others out there that are also staring from zero running. I always took a mobile phone with me and always listened to my body, never pushing it and always went routes where there were houses/car/people so I knew I could call on someone if I had any problems. I also let my husband know my route and when I would be back.
    I wore ordinary clothes at first because I was too embarrassed to be in shorts and t-shirt. Now I wear leggings and a skort (running skirt with shorts attached underneath)and a running bra,under my top. It was difficult to find things in my large size but I can just about squeeze into it all and hopefully that will be better as I lose more weight.
    I am not an expert and am not qualified to advise anyone on running but I hope my personal experience is encouragement for those of us who are starting right from zero running.
  • It's really nice to read this - I am an absolute beginner - I can barely jog, slowly, for 60 seconds. I feel like I'm the only one!

    I'm going to go out this weekend and start again - it's always got me down too much before - but I hope to manage it this time!
  • Hi guys, good for you! image. As Trailroad said, we've all been there and it is hard at first!

    I was in exactly the same position 3 years ago.......could barely manage to run between 2 lamp posts without collapsing.......I've now completed 4 half marathons.

    Keep at it and enjoy!! image

  • Well done!  It's great to hear that you were able to overcome, even if it was tough at first. image 
  • I was so relieved to see this post. I am new here and am just starting this journey so it's good to know there are others out there who have had to start from the same place! I've done a bit of walking recently. I have committed to a Race for Life 5K in June so that is my target. I will get out there tomorrow and make a start.

    The suggestion of counting steps is a great one so I'll start there!
  • Today I signed up for this thing. Not sure what I'm doing but hopefully it works. I've always wanted to run. I was a runner in high school and I've been up and down with it a few times. More down then up. 8 yrs ago was my last attempt. Made it to 2 miles then work took over my life and I had little time for sleep let alone exercise or running. Now I am attempting it again. I've been walking since the 2nd week of February 4 times a week and as of the last month  I'm at 4 to 5 miles at 3 to 3.2 speed. Walking is good. About 2 weeks ago I started to jog. I'm 56 a week ago crap! But I've managed to get to 5 min jogs and 10 min walks in between not realizing that it shouldn't be more then 5 min. Last night,  I got smarter, duhhh and started reading on how to train myself to become a runner again. So tomorrow's the day!! I will start the 10 week program and see if I need to start at week one or advance to week 2. It's tuff. I'm fat! I'd like to lose 40 lbs don't know about this stone stuff I had to look it up to see what it meant, hahah! But being a rail has no interest  to me just want to be healthier. Who knows maybe that'll change down the road. So if it's ok that I'm here I'll post my progress and hopefully will get some motivational support from you guys. In the meantime I'll let you know how it goes tomorrow. Oh and by the way the reason I'm starting it tomorrow is because I'm on my rest day, we just split our workouts to twice a day instead of all at once. That was exhausting in itself. That's 45 mins each session. Semi retired now working only 3 months a year!! Yeah!!!!..................image 
  • well done and welcome to the newbies.. we all start somewhere.  It's not the where that's important, it's the starting.  image

    Enough cheese for one day. 

    Start with small goals....  the marathons and ironmans will follow. 

  • I was in the same boat about 18 months ago. I'd decided to do more walking to increase my fitness and to hopefully help lose some weight. After about 6 weeks I wanted to do a bit of jogging to push myself a bit more so I started the Couch to 5k plan.

    The first week was 60 second jogs and I found them sort of ok and could do them without too much trouble. However the second week the jogs had increased to 90 seconds and I found them very tough. I kept at it though but to be honest, week 4 nearly broke my spirit. I had a few 5 minute jogs and by that stage I could barely barely make it to 5 minutes. It was so bad I was counting down the seconds and stopping the instant the counter hit 5 minutes. I was almost in tears of frustration at how hard I was finding it. I remember thinking "This is a waste of time, I don't know how anyone runs for longer than this, it's impossible".

    I checked ahead and the following week the runs were 8 minutes long and I knew there was no way I could do those, it was too much. I finished off week 4 and decided to repeat it. When repeating it I decided to jog a bit slower to see if that helped and two days into the repeat of week 4, I broke through some sort of barrier. I don't know what it was but it became so much easier all of a sudden. I knew straight away at that point I was going to have no trouble with the rest of the programme and I'm now at the point where I can jog/run for 3 miles non-stop which is taking me about 40-42 minutes. I'm horrifically slow but I'm hoping my pace increases as I get my weight down. I'm currently carrying about 4-5 stone extra!
  • Great stuff - for what it's worth, I started running in November last year. I was officially 3 stone overweight, and my plan, from "The Beginning Runner's Handbook" started at run 30 seconds, walk 4:30 and repeat five times. I thought I might die. I hated PE, especially running, and have spent the first 39 years of my life working out a mutual arrangement with a variety of sofas which has always gone well. Snack food may have been involved.

    Six months on, and I finished my first proper 10k race on Sunday gone,about 2/3rds of the way down the field, and I'm dead chuffed with myself. The moral of my story is "stick at it" - it can only get easier, thought you will have good and bad days. As sdf76 says, every step counts.

    I'm now only one and a half stone overweight, officially.

    I've entered the Kielder Marathon in October. I suspect I shall probably die on the route. Nothing ventured, nothing gained.

  • hi all, just been told ive got to lose a bit weight (at least 7st) always fancied doing a bit of jogging/running but was always put off by age and weight damaging my joints etc, but having just come by this forum decided to give it a go and going to start sunday, could be a long journey this
  • Go on Paul! Get to a running shop and get yourself checked for a decent pair of shoes and the world will be your oyster (or oyster mushroom if you don't like seafood).

    Remember to start off easy, build up, and be sure to tell us all about it. We love a good tale.

  • This was me 1 year I'm 3.5 stone lighter and entered into a half mara. I struggled with the first week of c25k, i couldn't manage the 60 secs 8 times.......infact the first time I think I managed 40 secs 5 times and then gave up. Keep at it and you will get there.

  • hi again, determined to stick at it although i think i'l be doing that 1st week a few times, no rush tho, fancy a half marathon next year if thats not pushing it too much, just need to get some decent starter trainers from somewhere?
  • Whereabouts are you Paul? Sure someone can chime in with the location of a decent shop in the area. When I was doing my 13 week programme, it took me 17 weeks as I repeated a couple and also missed a couple when I was resting a dodgy knee. Best advice I can give is to do what feels right for you, Also, if you keep some kind of record of how it felt, then you can look back and be amazed - it's why I started a blog to keep track of the programme.
  • just off M606 in bradford, plenty of chain stores round here but dont know of any proper running shops, decided to go for a walk for the next seven days to get used to moving again, give me chance to get some trainers sorted out, got me note book sorted as well so i get some idea of how its all going or not going as the case may be, will be on here alot for any tips and help that may be needed, you all seem like a freindly bunch on here
  • Not an area I know so well - but there's an Up & Runnig in Leeds if that's any good?

  • my first running trainers came from direct sports......herunsherun bit, they were good starter trainers.
  • Loved reading this thread. Inspirational, I really really struggle with running but I think i'm learning that its just personal achievement and not to get disheartened when I see other beginners doing so well! Currently I'm jogging for a minute and getting out of breath and then walking, then running... so on! I like your idea of a way of making you walk fast, and I'm definately going to be using that!! Thankyou!
  • I loved reading this thread too. It's reassuing to know that there are other people out there having similar problems - we all have our personal struggles which over time we'll overcome - besides we all have to start out somewhere.   Iam three stones overwieght and decided to get my backside into gear once and for all and opt'd for the couch to 5k.   I train on the treadmill as I have a few body insecurities but that's me - and at the moment, the treadmill works for me.  I am on week three at the moment and looking at next weeks schedule (running for 9 mins) fills me with dread but I'll get there....

    Oh, I live in Bradford and I got my shoes from sports unlimited.  I had a gait test which is something that I would recommend and they werent that expensive either.  I'd recommend them.    

  • This is an awesome thread!

    Right now, the thought of me running a mile is actually laughable, but I'm sure I'll get there eventually!

    I'm upping my run/walk times today to 2 mins running, 1 min walking! Also going to cycle tomorrow and go swimming on Saturday image

  • Jade2606 wrote (see)

    This is an awesome thread!

    Right now, the thought of me running a mile is actually laughable, but I'm sure I'll get there eventually!

    I'm upping my run/walk times today to 2 mins running, 1 min walking! Also going to cycle tomorrow and go swimming on Saturday image


    Jade2606 wrote (see)

    This is an awesome thread!

    Right now, the thought of me running a mile is actually laughable, but I'm sure I'll get there eventually!

    I'm upping my run/walk times today to 2 mins running, 1 min walking! Also going to cycle tomorrow and go swimming on Saturday image

    Yup. That was me, and not very many weeks ago. I ran for 20 minutes in a row on Monday, and have just about stopped grinning!! Seriously, if I can do it, anybody can. (Only 3 stone? I think I may top that, but only for now, LOL).

  • I love this thread. It's brilliant. I like you am very overweight but "try"to run.  You've really inspired me.  Keep up the excellent work.

  • Hi all. I am currently ar jogging for 8mins at a time but am really really slow and put the treadmill on 5k an hour so can actually walk at the same pace. Is this too slow or ok? There is no way on earth I could get to 8 mins speeding up. I suppose,y question is. Can you be too slow ...???? Appreciate any help on this thanks
  • Andrea, 2 things the

    first of which are you sure it's set on km and not miles?

    the second is if it is km why not try 4 mins at 6 or 7k an hour, then walk for 1 - 2 mins (4 - 5 k an hour) recovery and then go for another 4 mins at the 6 or 7k ?

  • Congratulations to all ! image

  • booktrunkbooktrunk ✭✭✭
    I'm still 3 stone overweight. But managed my first non stop 5k, it really is just a case of keep going. I'm hooked on this silly running lark!

    I have to say good gear does help, the more comfortable you are the easier it is not to find excuses to stop or not run,
  • bump

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