Most of my group had not been very active prior to joining the couch to 5K program. It is after all called COUCH to 5K for a reason.
Aside from the obvious benefits of running, like toning of legs, increased energy and heart rate / cholesterol levels I think we have each found a boost to our self confidence. It has indeed not been easy. But we started with nearly 100 other couchers. Now we have a solid group of about 12 that are still out there running, pushing and determined to push even further.
Tonight at the half way point I was not quite ready to resume running but the other 3 girls were going to. I wanted to walk. I made it about 3 steps and caved. With the remark of "damn you people and peer pressure" I resumed my running.
For me to be consistent in working out I need that peer pressure. I will push harder and further so long as there are other people there doing the same. I am coming up on my 'solo' run the Remember the 10 run. The run that got me motivated to join the C25K program in the first place. I am more than a little spooked about running alone. I am afraid that I will not push as hard on my run. I am afraid I will find it easy to slack.
I haven't mentioned it but my weight has not changed much. When I started running I was 195. 3 months in and I am still 195. At one point I had gained 5lbs. Hubby has been after me to start some cross training or weight training. Nothing crazy, just some 2lb hand weights. I guess I will start that soon. I bought the hand weights and there are Jillian Michael's Workouts on Cox Cable on Demand. At this point I want to see some improvement. Don't get me wrong, friends and coworkers are seeing a difference. Sadly this difference evades my detection.
Runners World Often says "Run with your Friends, Change Your Life" and they aren't kidding. When I started the C25K program I did not know ANYONE. As I was struggling along on one of our first runs a girl in the group sees me lagging a bit behind and said "come on just run to the red car" and with that a new friendship was born.
If you are on the fence about joining a group because you cannot con anyone into doing it with you, do it any way. Stick with it a few weeks and you will find that people will open up to you and you will find people there for the same reasons, they will help push you to that next level.
Have you experienced any positive changes from running / working out? What are they? How long did it take to see these changes?
**Oh, and about that nike + thing I am still figuring that out. Until I rule out operator error I do not feel comfortable reviewing it.