February 6, 2014
You would think that as a plus sized athlete (yep thats me) that by simply following a strict marathon training plan, which consisting of 4 run sessions a week, covering between 20 and 30 kilometres, including threshold, speed and long runs plus a weekly circuits class that the weight would simply drop off.
This is not (or has not been) the case. Well not for me anyway.
In fact since November I have been dancing around with the same 2lbs, losing it one week, then putting it back on the following week. Now I know that we had christmas during that period, but nether the less it is so freaking frustrating.
I have less than 10 weeks to go until my marathon, my second ever marathon and I am still a dress size 18 and still 3 stone over what is considered a healthy weight for my height.
My fitness is improving, as is my speed. This evening for example I knocked 3 minutes off a 9 kilometre training route which I only did last week, and it was mainly into a headwind tonight, so I know I am getting stronger. The fact that I covered over 80 kilometres in January, clocking up 15 runs in 31 days should count for something. But nope my weight has remained pretty much the same.
I am not running this marathon to lose weight, I am running it because I like being a marathon runner. But I am a little scared about having to cart this amount of weight around a 26 mile course. In 2012 when I ran the London Marathon I wasn’t this heavy, probably a size 16…but I felt a lot smaller.
At weightwatchers this afternoon I got on the scales to find I had put on 2.5lbs since last week when I had lost 3.5lbs.
“It must be muscle” I hear you say, and yes it is quite possible that some of my fat is turning into muscle. And while we are talking about fat vs muscle, don;t be fooled into thinking muscle weighs more, of course it does not. A lb of muscle weighs exactly the same as a lb of fat…a lb. A 16stone weightlifter weighs exactly the same as a 16stone coach potato, they just look a little different.
Recently I have had a few people comment on how my body has changed since last time they saw me “wow, haven’t you lost weight?” Well no I bleeding well haven’t. But my body is different. My upper body feels very different in fact, my shoulders and the area around my ribcage. My legs are toning up too…not quite ready for a summer mini skirt…but making good progress.
My main concern is the amount of weight around my hips, bum and tum. Problem areas for many overweight women I guess. I worry about fitting into my race t-shirt, and having to keep pulling it down over my jelly belly all the time. I worry about looking terrible in my face pictures. I worry about the impact on my hips and knees of having to carry that spare tyre around with me.
But I am not going to let all of this get to me, and this is why
- I know that in part my lack of weightloss is down to what I am putting in my mouth. Namely biscuits. I am eating a very balanced diet generally, oats and fruit for breakfast, soups and salads for lunch, chicken or fish with rice for dinner, but it is the snacking that is letting me down. This is because I am sooooo hungry all of the time, one of the side effects of marathon training I suppose. I must find an alternative snack to biscuits and chocolate.
- I still have 9 weeks to lose the weight. So if I curb my bad eating now I could in principle lose 18lbs in this time, if I lose 2lbs a week from here on in. If I worry too much about weight loss I may jepodise my training and not have the fuel I need to run. I will focus on a small weight loss each week from now on.
- I know that I need to employ a campaign of eating clean, focussing on unprocessed “proper” foods, with good protein, complex carbs, lots of fresh fruit and veg and of course drinking lots of water through the day too. I need to think of my body as a machine that needs fuelling.
- The key to successful marathon training is consistency, if I continue with what I am doing training wise with my planned increases in distance and regular speed work I believe that I will be ready for my marathon on the 6th April. I have a 20mile training run, a half marathon, a 10k race and a 16mile race planned too. I have to have faith in my plan.
Running for weigh loss is a tricky thing. Well it has been for me. I mean I have been running for over 10 years and I have yet managed to get to my goal weight of just under 13 stone. But I am not at all in denial about why this is. I have not been consistent, I have not completely prioritised weightloss and most importantly I have not yet addressed fully my complex relationships with food. As the saying goes, you can not out train a bad diet…I am living proof of that.
Do you think it is a popular misconception that long distance running, or running generally is a magic pill to aid weight loss?
- Why I chose to run a marathon (thefatgirlsguidetorunning.com)
- What do you mean you could never run a marathon? (thefatgirlsguidetorunning.com)
- Ultimate Marathon Bucket List (thefatgirlsguidetorunning.com)
- Why Half Marathons make you FAT (thefatgirlsguidetorunning.com)
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