I started running when I turned 40, almost 5 years ago. I couldn't run a city block without thinking that I would die. I tried running on my own and then with a friend for awhile. I worked my way up to 3 miles, still feeling terrible. I ran/walked a couple of local 5ks with hopes that one day I would be able to run a 5k without having to walk. Then I heard about Danny doing a new program called the "Couch to 5k". I wasn't sitting on the couch but I figured it would help me so that I could run 3 miles without having to walk and feeling so bad. From the first day, I enjoyed the program. I was running with other people that were new to running or was struggling to run. I learned alot, and I ran my first 5k race at the end of the program and didn't walk a step. I continued with Danny's 10k and 1/2 marathon programs. I have now ran 7 1/2 marathons, and lots of 5ks and 10ks. The side benefits that I got from Danny's course was that I lost weight, tighten up and now wear a size that I wore when I was a teenager. The program is great.
I would strongly recommend Danny's c25k program to any one who is starting to run. I was a part of the
BE&K couch group. When we first started I honestly had doubts as to whether I could cover the distance or not. I was already running a mile a day but couldn't get past that point.
In my opinion the strongest point of the program is that it helps you set attainable goals, while leaving the "big" goal in the future. By that I mean that if you reach enough small attainable goals before you know it you have reached the "big "goal, without realizing you are there.
Another strong point is the group runs. It is so much easier to accomplish these goals with a group to encourage you, and keep your spirits up after a run that in your estimation was not all that good. Through the group runs you develop friendships with not only those who are like you just starting out but also with more advanced runners who are willing to give of themselves and their time and efforts to be of assistance to you, and encourage you to reach your potential.
The third point I would like to comment on is the fact that there are only to 2 goals for this group:
1. Cover the distance
2. Have fun covering the distance.
Where else could you have a training group where the emphasis is not on finishing first, but rather just on finishing.
Since finishing the program I have ran 3 other 5k and 2 10k races and continue to reevaluate my personal goals and am now wanting to run a half-marathon, and with the training I have received and continue to receive from Danny and those who help him, there is no doubt that I can't eventually reach this goal as well.
“I don’t know where I would be today without the Couch to 5K program. I’m not a runner – never have been – or so I said until I met “Danny and the Couchers”. Thanks to the constant encouragement in person and via email from Danny and his coaches, I not only completed ONE 5K but in less than 2 years, I have done MANY 5Ks, MANY 10Ks 3 half marathons and 2 full marathons! Even my mom was inspired to start running and she has completed a 5K and a 10K! My best friends today are all former couchers. We’ve seen each other during good runs and bad runs, marriages, grandchildren, illnesses – you name it. We’ve cheered each other on race after race. I see them at least 3 times a week - they are definitely my extended family. Thanks to the couch program, I am happy AND healthy!”
When I first joined the Couch to 5K program, I couldn’t run a single lap around the track. The way we slowly worked our way from running and walking a couple of laps, to running a couple of miles, to running many miles, really worked for me. I ran my first half marathon earlier this year! Danny is funny, encouraging, and knowledgeable. At 38 years old, I am in the best shape of my life, and perhaps more importantly, I’ve learned to be my own hero. Thanks
Don't be fooled.....it was one of the hardest things I have ever done! Not the running mind you, just showing up the first time. I had some very close friends that were Danny groupies and I had heard about Danny for several months when one of them challenged me to start the couch to 5K. I dreaded it. I thought of every excuse. I tried to forget about it but I kept hearing this nagging voice inside say "you need to do this." At the same time I was contemplating this I ran into an old friend and the first thing out of my mouth was, "I am about to start a running group, want to do it with me?" Hoping he would say no, he didn't. He said sure. I HAD SAID IT. I WAS GOING TO DO IT! The next big step was investing in my first pair of shoes. After that, I was.....COMMITTED. He got shoes too and we showed up at the first informational meeting......all dressed up with new running clothes and new shoes....like the first day at school. After the first meeting....each day got easier.
We had all ages, shapes, and sizes in our class.....thank goodness and all levels of athletic ability.....using the term loosely. Danny was great. He did not judge...he encouraged. His emails were right on time and exactly what you needed to hear to keep you going. Do what you can he would say. His approach worked. Slow but sure.
My first 5K was the Race to the Courthouse.....a year ago I would never have dreamed I could run a 5K. I did....so did my friend. Not only did we both do something that was above our expectation, we renewed our friendship.
My advice.....just show up. You will succeed.
My friends are now starting to request, PLEASE quit talking about Danny and how incredible running is! But I can’t help it! I tried to run for the first time ever 2 years ago with a friend who was supposed to be training me. He said, we’ll just start out running one mile the first day and every day run a little more. I ran for 2 months and was miserable the entire time; I ended each run dizzy and feeling like I was going to vomit! In 2 months I was never able to run more than 2 miles and it never got any easier. Then I pulled a muscle and just quit. This past May I started Danny’s Couch program and 7 weeks later ran my first 5k. It is now July and I am running 4-5 miles on a regular basis. And it has NEVER BEEN HARD. We started so slow that I thought, how can this work? But Danny said trust him, don’t run more, don’t run less, just follow the program. And it works! I love doing the group runs, have met some great people, and am now training for a 10k. Don’t worry if you have tried and failed before because this will be different! You will be different!
I am so thankful Danny has this program. I'd debated for at least a year on whether or not to join, and I'm so glad I did! He starts you off slow with attainable goals which really gets you motivated. There were so many people that showed up, just like me, who were ready to get more healthy by learning the right way to jog and I ended up meeting such nice people. This is one of the most positive programs around- keep up the good work!! And thank you for showing me how fun jogging can be!
To say that Dannys Couch to 5K program is 'life changing' is an understatement. I was truly 'on the couch'---have had a gym membership for a number of years, and occasionally stopped in to do a quick little workout every so very infrequently. Never was a runner, absolutely couldn't run 1/2 mile when I started in May. 7 weeks later, I ran my first 5K. Crossing that finish line meant more to me than I can really put into words. Coming from a family of runners, I had always been their biggest supporter--travelling across the country to stand on the curb and cheer them on as they completed various marathons but I NEVER, in a million years, thought I could do it. I heard about the program from a friend of mine, and thought, you know, if I this is something I ever want to do, this sounds like a great way to do it. When I set out to do this program, it was merely about being able to run 3.1 miles. What it became was something so monumentally more---it became a program that showed me that any goal through perseverance, determination and a little priority setting is attainable. I have met some great people, still running, and training for my first 10K. This program isn't merely an exercise program but a 'get your life together, figure out what is important, be healthy and have a ton of fun in the process' program. I can absolutely not say enough great things about it. Danny, thank you so very much.
I am a recent graduate of R101 (Couch to 5k), currently enrolled in the "Masters" program, and most importantly I am no longer a Coucher!! The inspirational emails (from which I have stolen many quotes and posted on my cork board in my office) which I eagerly await because I know they will contain something to motivate me, make me smile, and often times laugh (rather loudly). It took a lot for me to join the group. One, because I was doing it by myself. Two, I was not in good shape physically, mentally or otherwise. So, I got approval from my doctor and I showed up in the Colonial Bank parking lot excited and scared. I quickly learned how out of shape I clearly was and how quick I could get in shape. If you have joined the group or thinking about joining, or whatever, Danny's emails always tell you that other people will want know how far are running, etc. When people ask me about running, I would say "I can't explain it. It just makes me feel really good on the inside." Well, now I can articulate that saying. . . I just got full clearance from my cardiologist! I can do whatever I want (this coming from a person who could not even get life insurance). I made sure the doctor knew it was all because of Danny and Couch to 5k. Don't be surprised if you have some heart patients joining soon.
My heart thanks you. I thank you.
Let's just say I'm built for comfort not for speed...let's say that while I played soccer for many years as a kid, even then I negotiated positions not requiring long bouts of running...let's say that I can still walk faster than i can run...but let's also say that thanks to Danny's program I ran my first 5K and I'm the one itching to go run several times a week now. The energy of the group, the hilarious emails, the camraderie for many of us first time runners...all facilitated with support and grace from Danny made me realize some goals I'm not even sure that I had! My husband and I make a date of running and even though he is faster than I am we are both eager to work 2-3 miles into our day...around our 3 kids' schedules because running is making us happier, healthier and heck, we'll be around longer to drive them crazy! Let's just say I've drunk the Kool-Aid...Thanks Danny!
OH MY GOODNESS – I am a runner!!! As I approached my 57th year (2/25) and with another “0” birthday looming on the horizon; the thought of running a 5K did not seem an obtainable goal. But….I DID IT thanks to Danny and the “Couch to 5K” program. When he spoke & outlined the program at the Information Meeting I was hooked. Oh and the emails….WOW! Even when I was tired or it was too cold, he gave me the inspiration to keep on going. Now I AM A RUNNER – thank you Danny!!!
Marianne J Leven