I have been a good boy this year. At least I hope I have, my waist line has told me that I have been. With Christmas and the New Year approaching I cannot help but reflect on what this year has done to me, and some previous years as well.
For many years I have been an on, off, and on again runner/exerciser. Back in 2004 and 2005 I had lost over 50 pounds by simply running 3 miles 5 days a week, and eating healthy. I felt great and vowed to never go back to what I used to be. Unfortunately life happened and I started pushing these healthy habits aside. Over the course of the next few years I would exercise in random spurts and attempt to eat healthy. All of the while wondering why I was not seeing much improvement. “I have bad genetics”, “people need to just accept who I am”, “I am big boned”, and much more were the frequent sayings in my day. It wasn’t until later in life that I learned that everyone has bad genetics in their life. It was not other people who needed to accept me and it was I who looked down on me. As for the big boned thing, that was just ridiculous. Whoever started that saying as an excuse for having a weight problem (being fat!) should be run out of town.
Over the years I gained all of the weight back, and than some. It was hideous looking. At times I would tell myself that I was just in my cocoon phase and that “some day” I will emerge as a handsome person.
It was not until summer of 2009 that I started to shape up and be consistent with my running. At first, I set out to just re enact my usual 3 miles 5 days a week, and eat healthier. For years I had a blockade in my head that I was not meant to run long distances. When I decided to confront this by attempting to run 5 miles, I was shocked. Sure the 5 miles killed me off for the day, but something happened in my head. I then knew that I was very capable of going further than I thought I could. Soon the miles started to add up, 7, than 8, 9 and 10 miles in a single run. How could this have happened? Sure my ego was growing with each additional mile, but so were my personal expectations of myself.
Life was good. Running was a part of my life again. Than believe it or not on all days, Friday the 13th of November 2009, sprained my ankle. It was bad! My world crumbled. I started to not see myself as a runner, and was very limited to what else I could do for exercise. It wasn’t until a cold January day that I tried to go for a run. It took time to build back up, but not having the mental blockade in my mind that I used to have made this time different.
When spring arrived, I was back in the saddle again! Running had proved again to be enjoyable, and I was being consistent. The only thing missing was that my diet was not good. I saw little change in my body from the weight I had gained during the sprained ankle takedown. Good eating is only as easy as you want it to be. Tell yourself that you will be miserable and hungry all the time, and you probably will. Tell yourself that it is no big deal and that you will eat again soon and things will go better. Keeping yourself occupied is a big help as well. I had to learn that the body shouldn’t be starved in order to lose weight properly.
If you feel depressed, unhappy, or frustrated in the midst of your current exercising and eating regimen, you could be doing it WRONG. Usually the first thing people think of when they hear the word diet is a celery stick, and going hungry. This is not accurate. It is true that you have to change things around, and that it is uncomfortable for a time. However it is like changing your wardrobe. At first some things feel odd, and you don’t think they are your type of style. Over time, as you receive compliments, or start to like the wardrobe, you get comfortable with it. One thing to note is to not completely change your whole wardrobe at once. Do a little here, and a little there.
With the year drawing to an end, I have to say that I have met my goals for running. My goals didn’t just unroll the way I wanted them too, I had to work hard. I have noticed a huge mental change because of the stress relief from exercising, and healthier eating habits. In regards to the weight loss, well let’s just say that this is just an added bonus to feeling good! To be exact I have lost around 35 pounds (incase you just have to know or I just needed to brag about it!).