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  1. Honestly, I'm not sure about the answer to any of those questions, especially (4), and I'm not sure that there's a clear consensus about them. Seems to me that there's a lot of heat and noise around these issues, but less useful sound and signal. A lot of people seem more interested in validating their own choices and that they're doing it right than anything else. My opinion - for what it's worth - is that it's really about what feels comfortable and what doesn't cause injury. If you have the option of running on softer surfaces than sidewalks, I'd recommend doing so, but it's not a deal breaker in my view. Some people are very critical of "heel strike" running where the foot lands heel first, and recommend a forefoot strike. I'm a bit reluctant to mess around with running form, but I did so after going on a develpment course, and what helped me was worrying less about which bit of my foot landed when, and more about talking shorter strides faster while running. That helped me run faster and further, but that was a way into my running development. My other tip is not to do too much, too soon. Cardio vascular fitness for running develops much faster than musculo-skeletal, particularly if you're already reasonably fit, because adaptations take longer. So take your time, building up slowly. Oh, and that goblin is probably kiting you. It's a trap!
  2. I'd suggest seeing a physiotherapist about your knee problems if that's feasible for you, and if you can find one who specialises in sports injuries, even better.
  3. This sounds like a question for a qualified medical professional rather than for an internet forum. I think if you're getting knee pain that takes three days to stop, it's not something to try to run off. You mentioned a physical examination - was that with a doctor or a physio, and was it for this issue in particular? I've found that local/family doctors typically don't know a great deal about these kinds of injuries, and if this was a general medical, chances are they're not looking for knee issues. I'd suggest seeing a physiotherapist if that's possible. The fact that this hasn't got better after a period of rest is new information that could help a diagnosis, so if you've not sought help since your break, that's another reason to do so. Not having the right running shoes can cause problems, but pain for three days afterwards sounds like a bit more than a shoe issue, though that may turn out to be part of the problem
  4. "Wipe someone's butt and you sanitise them for a day... teach someone how to wipe their butt and you sanitise them for life"... or something. More seriously.... I think a really good starting point for leadership is to think of examples of good leaders and leadership (ideally from real life/personal experience, but fiction/popular culture will do too) and reflect on what they do well and how they do it. Conversely, think about who is terrible and reflect on their mistakes, why they make them, and how to avoid them. One idea is to adopt a few leadership heroes and think 'how would X handle this'? Secondly... some people have very fixed and quite narrow ideas about what leadership can be. They tend to think of it as loud and extroverted and in people's faces and being better than everyone they lead and having all of the answers, but it needn't be that at all. I think good leadership can be much more subtle, much more collaborative and consultative, much more... humane. My own philosophy is that there are two great evils in leadership/management.... alienation (where people don't understand the context of what they're being asked to do, so the work becomes meaningless) and micromanagement... telling people how to do something, rather than merely what outcomes are needed. Obviously how something is done often does matter and sometimes is of critical importance, but I'd rather (say) ask an experienced administrator to organise an small event and keep track of registrations via whatever means they prefer, rather than mandate a particular platform or spreadsheet for them to use.
  5. Trust the programme, or find another one! For a half marathon, most experienced runners will run the full distance (and possibly longer) in training - the marathon is different and I think only a small proportion will run the full distance in training. I'd run the half marathon distance in training, but not the full. If your goal is to get round and get round well, running to 11 is fine. For your third half, if you're chasing a faster time, you probably should consider running the full distance in training, but that depends on all kinds of other factors. Here's why running 11 in training means you can run 13.1 on race day: Adrenaline, sense of occasion, crowd support, the power of group activities. sheer bloody mindedness. The taper. The programme should ease off before race day, allowing you to rest and recover. When you run your 11 miler, you'll be running in carrying the fatigue of all of the rest of your training. Your long run will be simulating running the last 11 miles, not the first. Your taper buys you the first. If you do want to run 13 before the race, then find a programme that's built for that. Don't just extend the 11 to running 12 or 13 the week before, because you need the taper.
  6. The only treadmill running I've done is when trying on new running shoes, so I'm probably not the person to answer this, but... I think first step would be to get comfortable on the treadmill and its controls before starting running on it or starting a couch to 5k programme. I think you need to get confident with what the various buttons and settings do, how to turn it on and off, to work out how not to fall over, that sort of thing. Perhaps don't go faster than some of the walking settings until you're comfortable and confident on it and then perhaps look at some of the easy running pace settings and find one that feels right. As for speed, it's really hard to say - it depends on your natural gearing. I'm helping my running club with c25k at the moment, and we have people running at barely past walking pace, and people running much faster at what I'd regard as my 'easy' pace. People are built differently, and running more slowly than your comfortable slow pace can be difficult. There's a temptation in c25k to want to run quickly, but obviously it's not about speed but running the distance at whatever pace suits. So I think I'd recommend starting slowly and keep the speed constant for all the running bits of that workout. If it feels too slow - unnaturally and inefficiently slow - then try turning it up a bit next time. You needn't turn it up just because you feel you can - one of the points of the programme is that each run should challenge you but not wipe you out utterly. I would recommend running outside rather than on the treadmill, but I quite understand the motivation to start in relative private, especially if the weather outside isn't ideal...
  7. I'd suggest seeing how it goes. A slight acceleration of the programme without running on consecutive days seems like a reasonable approach for the early weeks of C25k, but I'd suggest reviewing it as you go and being alert for any twinges or tweaks, and perhaps drop back to the recommended 3 runs per week later in the programme, especially if it turns out that you have a bit more time once the fundraiser date is settled. This is my favourite article in terms of an explanation about new runners and injury risks. https://theconversation.com/taking-up-running-heres-what-you-need-to-know-to-make-it-to-february-70497 Best of luck!
  8. If you're literally feeling physical exhaustion, feeling sick, and limping home, (or even some of those) then I think you're doing it wrong. Especially as a new runner. There's a real problem with the "no pain, no gain" philosophy, and the idea that you have to push yourself to the limit every time. If we push ourselves to the limit every time we risk injury, and perhaps just as bad, it makes it much less likely that we'll do the exercise again. The way that the couch-to-5k programme is designed is that for most people each session should be challenging, but not exhausting. If it feels exhausting, the advice is to repeat the week. I'm at a stage in my running now that I have the experience and confidence to manage higher levels of discomfort - some of which is physical, some of which is psychological. I can go training with my club and sprint up hills, knowing that it's really going to hurt, but knowing that in a few minutes I'll get my breath back and in a bit more time my legs will feel less like jelly. I can find pleasure in pushing myself hard, in what I'm able to accomplish, and in being finished, knowing that I worked hard in that session. Point is that I'm starting to think that no-one should be pushing towards exhaustion at the early stages of acquiring skill, unless you're one of those odd people who really enjoys it. I think newer runners on couch to 5k should be running as slow as they like (different people have different 'gearing') when they carry out the workouts. The last x% of time for each run will hurt because the last little bit always hurts, but ideally the feeling on finishing should be a feeling of having worked hard but not to exhaustion, and a mixture of relief/pride for being finished! Now... I'm never in the business of converting everyone to running because I just know that some people aren't wired that way, but I think a similar approach might work with other forms of exercise too. Work out hard enough so that you're sweating, breathing hard, but not so hard that you half-kill yourself, get DOMS so hard you can't move for a week, and never want to do it again. Gradually what becomes manageable increases over time, and you start seeing results. On endorphin rushes... I think there was discussion of this early in the thread. It's not a matter of exercising -> get endorphin "rush". I find real rushes relatively rare - typically what I get is a form of satisfaction, pleasure in achievement, gratitude to the universe for being able to do what I'm doing... and relief at being finished. As regards podcasts... I find them great for running, but I never got on with them for circuits etc - needed music for that.
  9. It might also help to read a few articles on the 'Spotlight Effect' - we all tend to think we're the centre of the world and others are paying much more attention to us than they actually are.
  10. Hi @Segev! I never want to be 'that guy' who tells everyone that they ought to do what I do, and tells them what they shouldn't and shouldn't enjoy, but for what it's worth.... What I'm hearing is a lot of 'social' pain around sports and exercise... being made to go by your parents (lack of control/autonomy), feeling like the worst play on the team (negative comparison to others, perhaps worries about letting each other down), feeling like you've come bottom of your particular league. It sounds to me like team sports in particular might not be for you, and perhaps directly competitive sports might not be for you either. And that's entirely fair enough - not everyone is competitive, and it drives me nuts when too much youth sports are about competition, rather than developing healthy habits. The other thing I'm hearing is frustration at lack of improvement, or perceived lack of improvement. And it's very had to notice improvements if you're *still* feelling like the weak link, because others are improving too and perhaps improving faster. Easy to say that we shouldn't compare ourselves to others, but the reality is that we do. TL:DR - from what you're saying I'm in no way surprised that you don't like physical activity, and I'm absolutely not saying that you're wrong in that. However... from what you've said I would say that there's at least a chance you might enjoy more - or hate a bit less - forms of exercise which aren't directly competitive, which don't involve groups (to minimise comparison), and where there's a chance to see improvement or development. I'm not sure how important the latter is to you. I'm a runner, so I'm biased... but you can do a couch to 5k by yourself, you're not competing with anyone, and you should see improvements quite quickly. With running more generally you could enter organised races, or you could just run your own routes and your own pace. You could keep track of your pace and distance, and keep track of PBs. I tend to think that there's a difference in temperament between people who are runners and people who are lifters, and I'm sure someone will be along in a minute to say that much the same applies to either lifting weights or doing bodyweight workouts, and they'd be right. @DevilSlayerDante - this is probably a stupid question, but have you tried combining exercise with listening to podcasts? Some people listen to music, but for all except my speedwork/hill work (and on race days) I'll be wearing headphones and listening to podcasts. Sometimes on a long run I lose myself in my running and tune out the podcast, sometimes I lose myself in the podcast and forget I'm running.
  11. I wonder if there are physical activities that include elements of problem solving? Orienteering, perhaps, but that's not easily accessible to everyone, everywhere. Is Geocaching (?) a bit like orienteering? Presumably it's still a thing... More generally... what is it you hate about the physical activities that you've tried? Is it physical (pain, discomfort), psychological (boredom, stress, fear, anxiety) or social (embarrassment, vulnerability)? Or a combination of factors for different activities? My sense from helping out with c25k courses with new runners is that while some don't enjoy it at the start, some will probably never enjoy it (and so won't stick to it), while some will enjoy it more once confidence grows/anxiety reduces/social worries reduce. Is it worth thinking in terms of 'don't enjoy doing X now' and 'can't imagine enjoying X ever, even with proficiency/confidence'?
  12. Tapeworm This one amazing trick that doctors don't want you to know Oh... are you mistaking me for my twin? No, I'm actually just *further away* In terms of honest answers, I prefer to describe it as "eating smarter" rather than "eating less". Definitely moving more, though...
  13. This isn't something I've experienced directly, so this is pure speculation... I imagine that some of those kinds of comments that people make are really more about themselves... if other people can be healthier, it follows that they could be too, your success shows up their failure or at least threatens the web of self-justifications and reasons why they're not doing what you're doing. One way to keep the self defence going is to say that the problem is your "obsession", not their relative failure. However... if it's not that, and if people are genuinely concerned, I wonder how they'd respond if you were to ask them what they're afraid of happening - what doing "too much" might do or cause. At route might be reasonably sensible worries, but perhaps more likely they're not particularly sensible or serious worries and asking that might show that up. Or it might provide a way to reassure people. A worry that I've replaced one slightly addictive behaviour (food) with another (exercise) might be a reasonable one... worries about sustainability might be reasonable... fears of not allowing yourself to enjoy life or fears about injury less so, but perhaps people are reassure-able. But I think RisenPhoenix, Bean Sidhe, and Raincloak's points about shutting down or not engaging with these kinds of discussions can also be a very good idea for your own sanity and wellbeing if they're not going to end well. In my own way I used to acknowledge compliments/signs that people had noticed, but wouldn't engaged or offer any more unless asked.
  14. Probably obvious, but I'd also suggest warming up and warming down first, especially if it's cold. Perhaps a very brisk walk or slow jog, rather than going cold into sprinting. I'd also suggest being generous with yourself about recovery time between sprints. Quality as well as quantity is important. One option might be to do a set of x sprints with y rest between, then allow yourself a longer rest and do another set. I sometimes fall into the trap of seeing resting for longer as a sign of weakness, only to regret it a few seconds into the next rep! Have you come across "strides"? They're a lot like 100m sprints, but rather than an all out sprint, they're a more gradual acceleration, holding about 95% effort for a few seconds and then decelerate gradually. I'm often at training early, so I'll warm up with them, and where possible I use them to warm up before races. I'd definitely recommend incorporating them somehow, perhaps as a warm-up, perhaps to alternate with 100m sprints, or perhaps in place of all out sprinting entirely. This article discusses strides in the context of additional training for people who already run a lot and want to improve, rather than in the context of starting running/sprinting, but hopefully is a good explanation. http://strengthrunning.com/2012/10/what-are-strides/?doing_wp_cron=1510828568.3354449272155761718750 Oh, and watch out for cars!
  15. Think this is great advice. Not everyone is a fan of counting calories, but it definitely worked for me. Making a few changes (like you've already made, water for soda etc) is definitely the way to go, and once they're working it's time to make a few more. But I recognise the stress elements...I remember staring, paralysed by indecision, at a chiller cabinet full of sandwiches, unable to make any kind of decision. But I got through that. One thing does give me pause... if you're depressed and on medication that enhances appetite I think this needs to be factored in. I've been on medication (not for depression) that had some similar side effects and I think any plan (and your associated expectations) need to factor in these additional challenges. It could be that actually - under the current circumstances - not putting on any more weight is an achievement in itself. I don't want to be negative, or limit your ambitions. It might be that weight loss (and exercise) may help with the depression, so it may all end up being a virtuous circle, and it makes sense to do all this at once. Making plans and being positive about the future is good. On the other hand, it might be a time to be gentle with yourself and your expectations. All of which is a long-winded way of saying the obvious, that I think you should discuss your weight loss plans with whoever is seeing you for depression.
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