By Get Active
We are following the stories of some of the thousands of people who have been getting active with the free Couch to 5k app.
London Sport took the opportunity to catch up with Tameena, who has recently graduated from the Couch to 5k programme. Tameena has shared with us her unique journey on getting active again.
Why did you begin using the
Couch to 5K app?
At the end of March,
quite soon after we went into “lockdown”, I was furloughed and really, I was pretty
gutted about it. The first month I spent a lot of my time watching Netflix,
reading books or sleeping. Ramadan was about to start, and I knew I wanted to
be in a better place physically and spiritually, and because I could no longer
go to the gym and play cricket and having tried to run in the past and failed,
now seemed the perfect time to restart and focus on my goal to run 5k and be
How did you find the
programme? Was it useful?
I really enjoyed the programme and found myself to
be quite disciplined. I wanted a healthy Ramadan so started on the first day of
fasting and followed it through. I ran every other day at 2am before having
breakfast around 3am! Some would say I am bonkers running at that time, but I
felt safe and I like doing things on my own terms. The app is very
straightforward – it’s weird to say trust an app, but you just do, and it
What did you like about
I loved the coaches that
you have speaking to you on the app. I found them very motivating and felt like
the coaches were with you constantly on the journey, especially during the
last-minute countdown. There was a sense of empathy and connection with the
coaches, like they knew exactly how you felt. The online community was also
great. On the Facebook page there is no negativity, everyone is supportive,
empowering one another and sharing their own positive stories. Its great to
see, and you feel like you have everyone cheering you on.
What difference did it
make to your physical/mental health?
Physically I feel 100%
better, but mentally is where I saw the main differences. The programme has
made me realise I am so much more resilient, tougher and stronger than what I
give myself credit for. In week 5, there was a slight jump, but I told myself I
could do it and with the help of the coaches and the can-do attitude, I then
did it! On week 9, I just carried on and managed to hit the 5k. It’s made me
feel a lot calmer, which is needed with the current situation and being put on
furlough. Since starting the couch to 5k I feel more at peace, little things
that normally stress me out don’t as much anymore. Strange to say, now when I
see people running, I get jealous of them and I never thought I would be that
Are you still using it?
Do you think you’ll continue at the end of the nine weeks?
I’ve gone from not being able to run for 60 seconds to
running non-stop doing a 5k in 42minutes. I did it to get fit and healthy and I
want to continue doing so. I have a competitive streak in me and so now I want
to take it more seriously. I bought a Garmin watch towards the end of the
programme and I am now eager to improve my time – hopefully down to 30mins. After that I would like to do a 10k and who
knows maybe a marathon one day.
would you say to other people thinking about beginning to run? Any advice?
Just get out and do it. If you downloaded the app the
intention is already there. Just step out the door, that’s the hardest battle.
The feeling of accomplishing something outweighs any negative thoughts! Don’t
get hung about pace or people watching as its your own journey and you can’t
fail. No run is a failure, the fact you’re getting off the couch is the
achievement. I have started using the Nike phrase “just do it”. What is the
worst that can happen?