Newbie Introduction & looking for some advice...

Hi Folks.

Nice to be a part of the forums and I am looking for a bit of advice.

So to make a long story moderate...

I am a 33 year old male who at this time last year (Spring) weighed 92kg. I lived a very sedentary lifestyle and I had done occasional exercise in the past, none of which ever really 'resonated' or seemed enjoyable to me.

Last November, so approximately 6 months ago, sick of carrying the weight, I joined a local gym which I still go to around 2 to 4 times a week (work dependant). I have never really run, but I began to do more and more on the treadmill and started to enjoy the sense of achievement (and dopamine release) after a run/whatever I could manage.

We found out over Christmas that my 2 year old daughter needed Heart Surgery, so come January I decided to do a run for the Charity that supports her. I ran 52 miles over 3 weeks (aimed for 40) when I could (as a newbie) and struggled through it, but enjoyed the challenge. Today I weigh 78kg and feel all the better for it (I am trying to do resistance training along side the cardio and build a bit of muscle but I am finding it very difficult).

Anyhow, where my issue comes in is that my stamina and endurance doesn't seem to be raising, if anything it feels like it is reducing. Realistically I can't run for long, maybe a few miles at a time tops. I read all the time of people going from nothing to 10K in 4 weeks and the like.

In the last 6 months I was out of the picture for 3 weeks with Covid, and I had a severe bout of recurring bacterial food poisoning at the beginning of March. I don't know if things like that have an effect (I am a complete newbie so forgive me if that is irrelevant).

At this gym that I attend, you are eligible for a trainer to give you program reviews, and the trainer who occasionally does a session with me is great, and has introduced me to HIIT. However, my times are getting worse. My usual jogging pace is 9.5kph. So with HIIT I run 12kph for 3 minutes then basically walk for 1 minute and repeat. When I started a month ago I could do 8 repetitions of this until I was spent. Now I can do 5, and my lungs are on fire and I want to vomit!

Same with an endurance run. I can do 1.5 miles and I am done. Like, completely done.

Does anyone have any advice, or has anyone been through this before? It feels like a bit of a personal phenomenon because usually if I work at some I maybe plateau for a bit before improving but this seems to be a sharp decline in progress.

Any advice and comments welcome, but more importantly: -

Hi, and thanks for having me in the forums!



  • Hi Tom,
    I'm also a relatively new runner too!
    Sorry to spam your replies so as I can build my post count up in order to start writing my own threads.
    The only answer I can give which may or may not be of any use is something called zone 2 running or maf running. It is called a few things but these seem the most popular. I'm sure you will get real answers soon but in the meantime you could always look this up on YouTube and see if it may benefit you in any way.
  • 1owrez1owrez ✭✭✭
    Welcome ckp82 - one of the good places to ramp up the posting count is:

    After 10 posts you should be able to make new threads :) Don't lose count now :D
  • 1owrez1owrez ✭✭✭

    Hi Tom, I hope your daughter’s treatment goes well. Great that you have done some fundraising for the associated charity.

    Well done on the weight loss, wish I could be so disciplined.

    Covid and food poisoning will not have helped you and you do need time to recover from such things, you should expect to step back and not be able to perform as fantastically after those.

    HIIT I don’t think is going to contribute much to your running ability. It’s great for burning some calories fast but not for improving endurance. Don’t stop doing it though if you enjoy it; I’m just harping on about running… I’ve never done HIIT so maybe I shouldn’t comment :D

    One thing you don’t talk about is your “running training plan”. You know, how many times you run per week and what sort of runs you do. Here is some stuff from Runners World regarding 10ks. Whilst they do talk about even a 10k in 2 weeks I’d say the 8 week approach is far better.

    8 week plan…

    All the plans…

    To improve speed you need to do “reps”, repetitions, one of the easiest concepts is between 200m and 400m up a hill, it doesn’t need to be very steep and you can judge the distance between lamppost etc. Belt up the hill as fast as you can and turn around to jog back down, go as slow as you like back down, that’s the recovery time, the only rule is; when you get to the bottom, you gotta immediately turn and run back up. Start at 2 reps if you’ve never done this stuff before, you don’t want to snap anything, and maybe add a rep per week up to 8.

    Endurance comes from running long and slow called “LSR” long slow run, typically done at a weekend when you have time. These are not record breaking runs, you should be able to sing to yourself as you trot along and not get out of breath.

    Enough blabbing from me for now. Have you got a weekly running plan?

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