Overweight “newbie” runners?

I have NEVER been a runner. I just can’t do it, it’s hard, I’m out of breath instantly and I have exercise induced asthma... I couldn’t run 100m without bending over in agony to catch my breath... yes I was 5’2 and weighed 78kg but even when I was lighter and younger I struggled.

My weight loss has got me so far to 68.1kg and I feel a big difference. I also started a walking exercise program, walking a min of 2.5km daily for 3 weeks. Some days I’ve walked 9km. Tonight, I left the house for the short 2.5km walk (it was 11:15 pm) with my dogs. For some unexplainable reason today I started jogging slowly and surprisingly I didn’t stop. My time was very slow, I probably could have gone a Tony bit quicker if I left the older dog at home but I managed 2.5km in 23 mins.

To most of you that probably sounds shockingly slow. But to me, the fact I jogged the whole 2.5km was unimaginable so I don’t care the time I clocked. I’m hoping, however, there may be some similar folk who are starting slowly (like me) or started slow a while back who can share some positivity and support etc!

Also I’d be interested to hear how people are improving- and tips to survive the leap to running.


  • fuzzylop72
    fuzzylop72 Posts: 677 Member
    I think most people (of every skill level) do most of their running at an easy/zone 2 type of pace so I wouldn't worry too much about your speed. As your aerobic conditioning improves, your speed can improve at the same % of max heart rate.
  • marisap2010
    marisap2010 Posts: 871 Member
    Good for you for getting out, no matter how slow. The more you do it, the easier it will become.
  • nooshi713
    nooshi713 Posts: 4,842 Member
    edited July 2018
    I have never been able to run. I have tried but even when doing it regularly I remain slow. At my peak of fitness I could run a mile in 12 minutes. My heart rate also shoots up to 200.

    I can hike for miles or swim 50+ laps but cant run to save my life. The bouncing motion just tires me out too quickly.
  • JetJaguar
    JetJaguar Posts: 801 Member
    Welcome to the club! A lot of people (especially beginners) try to run too fast, and you actually need to slow down to see improvements in endurance. Most of your running should be at what is known as a "conversational pace". That is, you should be able to carry on a conversation with a partner in short but complete sentences. Google "talk test" for more pointers. Don't worry about speed at first - speed work can come later.

    I agree with the above, look into the Couch to 5k training plan. It will get you from doing nothing to running 5k in about two months, and still feel good at the end.
  • meleileen
    meleileen Posts: 46 Member
    Yes to all of the above comments on c25k. I use the one by Zen labs. Years ago I went from using that to running 5 miles a day for fun! I, too, hate(d) running, but the feeling after is amazing. Pace doesn’t matter...just keep moving. You should be proud of yourself! I find upbeat music helps (love Pandora). Sadly, I stopped running and gained a lot of weight in 3 years . I’m 210 lbs., but I started c25k yesterday. Your pace is similar to mine....we should both me proud. Get fitted for a good running shoe (by a pro) and, if you’re female, a good sports bra.....the bra thing had me very uncomfortable yesterday (I had a low impact one on.....big mistake lol). I’m so happy for you!
  • VUA21
    VUA21 Posts: 2,073 Member
    1. Slow down! Seriously, running is about gait, not speed. So long as both feet are off the ground at times, you are running. When I first started my running speed was slower than my walking speed.
    2. You run 10m, 100m, 10km.. if you run, you ARE A RUNNER!
    3. I ran just under 4 miles this morning, my pace: just over 12 minutes/mile. (12:11/mile according to my Garmin). I am a slow runner as well, but I run, that's all that matters. Don't be upset at your speed, speed will come naturally in time
    4. Focus on gait, posture, and breathing. Not speed. C25K is an amazing program designed for beginners. On thier website, they even recommend repeating weeks if needed.

  • Avidkeo
    Avidkeo Posts: 3,157 Member
    Im almost the same stats as you - 5'3" and around 67kg. I also get exercise induced asthma.

    I started walking every lunch time, (always use my inhalers before going out) that progressed after a few months to a light jog, then to a run, and just this morning I ran 8km for fun and got a pace of 5:28 on one of km. This process has taken about 18 months.

    if you are going to start jogging, and maybe increase to running, get yourself some really good shoes, your body will thank you for it. And just go running. I have done nothing to train for this, I just get out running regularly. And use your inhaler before every run, your lungs will thank you. my breathing has gotten better, I can do a couple of km now without needing it, but as soon as I hit a hill, I need that salbutamol (best drug in the world!)
  • mkculs
    mkculs Posts: 317 Member
    Congratulations! Slow is the way to go! I think of being able to stay ahead of the zombies—all you need is a steady pace :) Seriously, though, by starting slowly and adding distance cautiousl ( 10% per week), you can build endurance without injury. And slow running is just so relaxing! I’ve never worried about speed and never entered a race of any type, and have been a runner for almost 45 years. No running-caused injuries either. Bones of a 25 y.o. And low heart rate and other great vital stats despite obesity following a high-risk pregnancy. Enjoy!
  • aliyusaf
    aliyusaf Posts: 20 Member
    edited July 2018
    rekrapetak wrote: »
    I have NEVER been a runner. I just can’t do it, it’s hard

    These were my exact thoughts two years ago! I never finished above second from last during any run at school and I hated running. When I first started, I would take an hour to walk 5km. The key, I found, was persistence. Just not giving up. I also went for distance, rather than time. I would do 5 km no matter how long it took me.

    Slowly, but surely, you get better. I now can run 5k in under 30 minutes and my fastest 10k time is 55 mins. That is about it for me, as - mentally - I just can't see the point of running any farther! I know run 5k 4 times or so a week and really enjoy it. Still pretty slow compared to some, but comfortable for me.

    I guess the best advice with running is similar to that with the best exercise: it is whatever you can come back to, day after day, and be able to do.

  • litoria
    litoria Posts: 255 Member
    There is some wonderful, inspiring advice here. So great to see an online niche that builds people up
  • anl90
    anl90 Posts: 928 Member
    That is AMAZING! Seriously, I am super proud of you for going for it! I have never been able to run either. I would like to start, but I am so self conscious of how short the distance is I can run that I couldn't do it in the route I walk. I am hoping one day to get to that point. But that is a huge accomplishment - be proud of yourself! :)