The C25K plan changed my life significantly for the better. At almost 53 years old I decided to give the program a try and to set a formal, organized 5K even as my "graduation run" to keep me motivated. I had tried many times to do the gym workout route and only succeeded in having to pay for memberships I never used. I figured if I was going to spend 30-40 bucks a month on memberships, why not start scheduling a 5K every month or every other month for about the same cost and use that as a motivating factor? I had never regularly exercised as an adult. I used Robert Ullrey's excellent C25K program that has both voice commands and music in one package, and you can down loan it for free!
After choosing the Great Race of Agoura in April of 2012 as my first 5K as my graduation run, I found it much easier to stay with the program as I kept track of my progress and knew that the Great Race was drawing nearer. I completed it in 31:44 and have never looked back, and have run another 6 since then. I am still very much a beginner, have had my share of aches and pains, learned some hard lessons, but over all have had a blast and will continue to run for as much of my life as I can.
I have set some goals, 1 is to run the Santa Clarita Marathon this coming November 3rd (I had my longest run ever yesterday at 20 miles,) and to complete a sub 20 minute 5K. Yes, I know those are at opposite ends of the running spectrum! The 5K goal is going to be a real stretch for someone of my age and modest talent and I have a very long was to go. The marathon appears to be very "do-able" as all I have to do is keep putting one foot in front of the other for 5 hours or so.
My point is to encourage those of you who are using the C25K program and tell you it can be done; just don't let it freak you out. If you need to repeat one of the weeks 20 times, who cares, you will know when you can move on. You will never be sorry you made the effort and in a few months you will find yourself beginning to find your own personal rhythm, your running likes and dislikes.....and voila! You will find yourself out on the streets with giant grin on your face!