Saturday, November 7, 2009

Running fat & large, but RUNNING

There are no speed records being set, but the running has begun.

The last two weeks have had somewhere between 4 to 6 walks of about 30 minutes. The first one was barely 2km, the last have been barely 3km.

But my assumptions that technology is smart made an ass of me again. My iPod must have completely died at some point and been recharged, but not synched. No idea what date my walks were recorded as over the last two weeks, so I can't provide the details.

Tonight I broke out with the 1 minute runs. The schedule was:
0-5 minute warm-up walk
1 minute run + 2 minute walk x 7
4 minute walk (at good pace)
about 5 minute cool down

Managed to cover around 3.5km. Still slow. Took me almost all of 30 minutes to get to 3km. My Nike+ claims my best 3km was 25min & 19sec. Who knows how long ago that was. Certainly pre-pregnancy.

It felt great. My intention was only to do 5 sets of the 1 minute run + 2 minute walk. But it was good so I kept at it. Plus there was a desire to reach 3km in 30 minutes.

Tonights walk/run (according to the iPod):
Distance - 3.39km*
Time - 35:32
Pace - 10:28min/km
Calories - 362
*treadmill claimed it was 3.5km and I stayed on the treadmill an extra 30 seconds to get there.

Anyone running fat? Running postpartum? You're welcome to keep me motivated by sharing your training.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Running fat: On the treadmill again

Moving on up! Finally got off my rather large ass and got on the treadmill. 35 minutes while watching the Biggest Loser last night. My walks are a little faster than when I was 7 months pregnant, but still a quite slow.

But it was mostly good. I worked hard. Got a good sweat going. Was moving. I don't hurt today. That's all good.

Tonight I was too lazy to do it again, but I did pull out the Wii and did 32 minutes of Wii Fit. That's on top of my walking lunges and crab walk to the bus stop and the sumo walk back. The kids music class "Parent Room" was empty, so I did a few crunches, situps and planks.

My todo list is changing. Instead of just having my homework, things the kids need, meal prep and similar now it starts with "30 minutes of activity".

It feels good to move, to sweat and to feel strong. If I can work this in while parenting 3 kids and going to school? Surely you can, too.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

The week in review

Thursday night was weigh in. Down around 2lbs despite scarfing a McDs cheeseburger and cone on the way.


Saturday kicked off with boot camp offered through


Monday got all the 64oz of water in. Mixed my high fibre cereal with a little granola and nuts. Grabbed a handful of walking squats on the walk to meet the bus.

Tuesday snuck in a panicked walk with a friend. We were both running late late late, so the stress didn't help. But about 30 minutes in. 64oz of water gone before 9pm. And a stability ball core class with Christina of Body & Spirit Fitness.

Wednesday the water was done. Cereal was eaten. And I did walking lunges on the way to the bus stop.

Thursday was a busy busy day. I don't think I did anything positive. And the week must not have been that good. I was back up all but .2 of what I'd lost.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Eating better

Obesity Boot Camp taught me that the little things count. That I shouldn't be trying to change everything at once. That I shouldn't be focused on losing big amounts of weight over a little amount of time.

Since Canadians can't get on Biggest Loser, I kind of have to agree.

I think it was Health Psychologist Michael Vallis that spoke about a theoretical weight loss of 50lbs. That most of us would see success as losing 50lbs in 6 months and keeping it off for 5 years. According to him, long term success would look more like losing 10lbs over 3 months and keeping it off for a year. Then losing another 10lbs. Rinse and repeat until the last 9 months of year 5 you are at goal weight.

To do that? You make small changes and stick with him.

My small change last week was to drink 64oz of water everyday. To help me make it happen I've been putting a container of water (just for me) in the fridge each night to chill. (No more foot stomping and childish behaviour when the kids and husband use up all the cold water in the family pitcher).

It worked. I lost a 2.6 pounds.

This week my goal is high fibre cereal (Fibre 1 Honey Clusters) 5 mornings a week.

On Thursday I'll know if it worked.

Fibre1 Honey Clusters has the following nutritional information per 1 cup.
Calories 200
Fat 1.5g
Sodium 300g
Carb 43g (Fibre 13g)
Protein 5g

Plus it has 50% of my daily iron (something I need).

Friday, October 16, 2009

Something good to eat: Chocolate Banana Muffins

Do you love chocolate? Need something tasty and real to fill those chocolate cravings? I made up this recipe and it's not too bad.

Super Simple Chocolate Banana Muffins

3 ripe bananas (mashed)
3/4 cup whole wheat flour
3/4 cup white flour
1/4 cup cocoa (could use more or none at all)
1/2 cup sugar
4 T applesauce
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
chocolate chips/nuts to taste

Mix it all together. Throw batter in the greased muffin tin (or large loaf pan). Pam works great. Bake at 350F for 15-20 minutes. Loaf will take longer.

Tip #1: Double the recipe. Scoop the first pan of muffins with no cocoa. Add the cocoa and chocolate chips to make your second pan.

Tip #2: Do NOT overcook. They get hard and dry.

Tip #3: They freeze REALLY well.

Tip #4: I think a muffin works out to about 3 points in Weight Watchers depending on how much chocolate chips and/or nuts are added.

Tip #5: A 1/4 tsp of salt doesn't hurt them at all.

Tip #6: See comments for adding zucchini.

Running fat: Checking in

Still not running. Still not walking.
But! I did drop a couple of pounds in a week.
Running is still part of the equation, but here's a new interim goal. Losing 15 lbs by Thursday, December 17. So to keep track of where I was and where I'm going my starting measurements on October 8, 2009 were:

Weight - 224.4
Waist - 43
Left Arm - 14
Right Arm - 13.5
Left Leg - 26
Right Leg - 26
Hips - 52
Chest - 46

Monday, September 28, 2009

Running while fat: the first goal

Success comes in many forms. Success for this summer was producing and caring for a beautiful new baby girl. She was a healthy 9lbs 15oz.

There were occasionally forays of activities. Two weeks on the treadmill again. Determination to get out walking. But nothing consistent.

I'm back within a few pounds of my pre-pregnancy weight. But I'm already fluctuating up from there. So that means it's time to kick this journey off again. I have so many excuses not to. Kids to care for. House to clean. Meals to cook. Homework to do. Classes to attend. But to paraphrase something I heard on CBC's White Coat Black Art - obese people don't get old. If you see an old fat person? Take a picture. Because most are dead.

Where am I starting from?

Slightly injured. My back lower back is hyper-extended (SI joint). That's causing some hip and shoulder problems, too. Prolapsed uterus that happened postpartum. (That has somewhat worsened the urinary incontinence).*
Haven't weighed myself in awhile, but I will!
No running partner. She's dealing with a long term injury.
Fluctuating between eating well and living on cookies.
Drinking my water more than half the time.
Doing a core-training class once/week.
Regular stretching and Physio that's helping the back, hip and shoulder.

The first goal?
Get moving again!
Hoping for two weeks with three or more walks of 30 minutes or more. (Some of those will be pushing a stroller with about 50lbs of kid in. Please forgive me if they're slow.)

Anyone in?

* Have to note that I'm not the only one. Thanks to Christie O for posting her True Confessions!

Monday, June 1, 2009

Running Fat & Slow (but with a partner) has a great article up about running with a partner.

I have to say, all 8 tips are ones that resonate with me. My running partner has been all of those things, and a great motivator. It was the driving force for many months to know that if I didn't get my training runs in, I wouldn't be able to keep up with her on our regular weekend run. I'm someone who hates to disappoint people, and I knew she wouldn't want to leave me behind, so it worked out well.

Stumbling across the perfect partner for me through the Running Room clinic was pure luck. How did you find your running partner?

Can't wait to be back out there with her. Not sure how long it'll take me to catch back up after the baby arrives!

Status update:
No strolls, walks or anything for me. I'm beat and uncomfortable these days. Growing a baby is hard work. Plus two sick kids. (Excuses are great).
36 weeks pregnant
Slightly over 252lbs (I did stay below 250 for nearly a month, but just jumped up there again today).
Water intake fluctuates, but it's better working from home than it was at work.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Running scared

Sometimes you just need to do it.
Finishing last is not the end of the world.
Not trying? Is far more disappointing.

Rainy Saturday reminded me why I'm going to get back out there soon.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

A little holiday from running fat

Apologies for the delay in writing. There will be no activity in the next few days. The sick, the kids and the solo parenting are ruining my motivation. Will be back when the husband returns.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Logging activity: April 20, 2009

2km stroll in less than 25 minutes. Slightly less pitiful than last night.
30 weeks pregnant
Slightly over 250lbs

Got my water in today. Signed up for Weight Watchers online again. Stayed within my points. Both positives.

On the negative side, I didn't get in enough fruits and veggies. Didn't eat the right kind of food.

What are you doing?

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Lose weight to help the planet

Lose weight to help the planet argue British researchers.

It's one small step towards making obesity something I can expect will cause me to be discriminated against. Not only is my weight problem hurting me, my family and my future, but now it's my fault that there's global warming.

Logging activity: April 19, 2009

2km stroll in less than 28 minutes. Pitiful. But nice to get my heart rate up a little.
30 weeks pregnant
Slightly over 250lbs

Water challenge is going well. Week 1 complete. Stayed on track for 5 of the 7 days.
What are you doing?

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Running Advice on Weight Watchers

Just a couple of articles that Weight Watchers pushed out to me. Thought they might be helpful to others.

How do I move from running to walking? actually has some good advice. I think starting at two minutes would be too long for me, but everyone is different.

The bottom of Running 101 includes some suggestions on nice runs in Canada. I also liked this piece of advice, "Running is not sprinting. It is not done at a breathless, my-heart-is-going-to-explode-at-any-minute pace". So slow down and enjoy learning to run.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Advice for novice runners

A reasonably good article about getting back to running, or starting, while staying injury free from
Advice for novice runners

I really liked their plan for starting. It's nice and easy. Nice and slow. Something just about anyone can do.

Week 1 - 1 minute run, 4 minute walk x 5 times
Week 2 - 2 minute run, 3 minute walk x 5 times
Week 3 - 3 minute run, 2 minute walk x 5 times
Week 4 - 4 minute run, 1 minute walk x 5 times
Week 5 - 5 minute run, 1 minute walk x 5 times

Maybe that's the plan for you.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Weekly goals to help get back to slow running: Water

The long term goal of this blog is to motivate me to get back to running. Since I've been mostly sedentary for about a month now, I've decided to set a simple goal each week. Hopefully all this prep will have me ready to hit my running circuit just a couple weeks after this baby arrives.

Facing down the 250lb mark again, after having been below it for 3 years might be a motivator, too. (For the record, my all time high weigh-in was 270lbs+).

This week I'm going to increase my water intake. I've fallen off the wagon in terms of healthy eating and drinking, so this is a simple step back.

Once upon a time I took a class about project management and the importance of having a plan to succeed. It's a good approach to accomplishing anything. Paraphrasing an excellent professor, a solid plan has at least:
  1. A stated objective
  2. The tasks required to complete the objective
  3. A time frame to complete the tasks
  4. A person assigned responsibility for the task
  5. An estimate of required resources
  6. Deliverable/Outcome
Finally there's a need to always look ahead to make sure that dependencies are accounted for and there are some contingency plans.

Drinking more water is probably more of a task, but I'll take it out a little further.

The objective:
  • Drink more water
The tasks:
  • Drink two cups of water before each meal & snack
  • Take a travel mug of water when on the road
  • Actually measure how much water goes in my standard drinking classes
The time frame:
  • Drink at least 8 cups of water/day and keep it up for at least 3 weeks
  • That has to be me!

Required resources:
  • Mug at work
  • Ice cube tray at work
  • A lot more time in the bathroom.
  • Less last minute purchases of hot chocolate, juice, diet soda because there's no nearby cold water.
  • More satisfied feeling from my meals and less likely to over eat.
The dependencies:
  • Can't think of any.
The contingencies:
  • Traveling this weekend might be a problem. I'll be sure to drag around a travel mug so I don't have to waste money and environmental resources on bottled water.
  • Around the house I'll add a second jug of water to the fridge.
  • Make it part of my nightly routine to fill the ice cube tray.
Wish me luck!
I know from experience that simple adjustments can cause big changes. I lost my first 5 lbs (in about 1999?) just by giving up Coca-Cola. Maybe this will help hold my weight for the next couple of weeks.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Learning to Run to 1 minute

After quitting the 'Learn to Run' class that was far beyond me, I kept going with the program. Moving inside to a gym treadmill I started on an easy pace. Week 1 was 3 days out. Each day was the same:
5 minute walk
1 minute run
1 minute walk
1 minute run
1 minute walk
1 minute run
10 minute walk

Important things I learned. The value of a good quality pad (I use Tena pads now). Going slow enough to not often need the pad. Going slow enough to still be able to talk, but hard enough that I wouldn't be able to sing.

It become clear pretty early that I needed to do my 3 walk/run days with a day off in between. But I was able to do a strength class on my days off. Or a circuit at the local women's gym. The strength training class as a Mum & Baby class. The circuit was something like what you'd find at Curves.

Because the class was Mum & Baby for those recently post partum it was heavily focused on ab and back strengthening. The warm ups were pretty easy. Usually a short march. Used thera-bands for a little upper body/arm strengthening. Many many many lunges (and more and more each week). Every week there was an ever increasing number of sit-ups and variations. Some of the easiest to get started were a standard sit-up with legs supported on an exercise ball (or chair).

At this point I was at the gym 5 days a week. I ran 3 days. Took my class on the other 2. But time wasn't much of an issue since it was usually a 30-minute trip (including dropping the kids at the daycare) for my run days. The Mum & Baby classes were a bit more time consuming. Maybe 45 minutes? Plus I'd often have to stay a bit late and find a quiet spot to nurse the newest who was just a couple months old.

For the record: Today was my pre-natal check-in. It was bad, as expected. I 'clocked' in at 247lbs. Still not doing anything.

Saturday, April 4, 2009

The first run

It was the beginning of April. Warmer than you might expect for my climate (5C). I joined a sister and her friend for my very first running class. It'd been three months since I birthed my second child. My exercise was modest. But I was back at Weight Watchers and down to 221.4lbs. (Down from ~240lb pre-baby).

The class was intimidating. There were all shapes and and sizes, but I was by far the fattest. The largest. The least impressive looking.

Our first night was going to be running down a major highway in my small community. I was embarrassed I'd be seen. Afraid I couldn't do it.

They were reasonable fears. All true in the end. I was seen. I couldn't keep up. We covered 3.4km. The whole thing as 1 minute runs and 1 minute walks. Or some people did. Not me. We were rained on. All in all, it was an ordeal that I never wanted to repeat.

I made many mistakes on that first run. It was too fast. It was too far. I tried to keep up. I was over dressed. By far the most embarrassing part was that I leaked. As in urinary incontinence. Cold, wet, covered in hives and dragged myself home and into the shower and swore to never return. (A quick shower, of course, the baby was waiting to be fed!)

There were three positive things that came out of that class.
1. I stuck with the running, not the class, but the running.
2. I got a training schedule that got me started.
3. I got a sheet of stretches that became my bible.

Maybe the larger thing is that I learned that this had to be about me, about my program and not about what a 140lb 5'10" man thought would be easy for anyone.

For the record: I'm frightened to weigh myself. I'm coming up on 28 weeks pregnant and I was over 245lbs last time I checked. Gained 5 lbs in a week. My prenatal workout class has ended and I haven't been on the treadmill in over a week.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Starting out... all over again

I started this blog with the intention of keeping track of my running journey. I'd just completed my first (and only) 10K run and was excited to set a new set of goals. But life got in the way.

Who would be interested in my running blog? Not many people. But there's a target audience out there. Those who are starting out morbidly obese. Where I was when I started.

Instead I'm 6 months pregnant and back to walking 2km 3-4 times a week. It's not ideal. But I am moving. And that's important.

If you're interested, stick around. I'm going to re-tell the story of post-partum obesity running, and then use that as the inspiration to do it all over again.

For those that think they can't do this? Think again. I've been morbidly obese or obese since I was 8-years-old. I'd never run before March 2007. I've birthed two children. The only things I had going for me? I'm not that old. I don't have high blood pressure. I don't have diabetes. I don't smoke and I don't drink. But if you're all those things? You can still do what I did. Just check with your doctor before you start.

For the record:
March 23rd - over 240lbs and about 6 months pregnant.