Beginning while Morbidly obese

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03/09/2011 at 18:46


I'm not new to the site (been lurking for a considerable time now) but I will be new to running......

I have started a few times but then with one thing and another I've not carried on, however this time I plan to start tomorrow and enter a 5k before the end of November.  

 My questions are:  

1  is there any reason why, as someone who is defined as Morbidly Obese, I shouldn't run?   My blood pressure is regularly checked by my doctor and is always "normal", I have no other health issues apart from being a fat git.  I have tried walking and feel the need to be moving faster (hence the starting running)

2  Is the plan on moving from a self-confessed couch potato to doing a 5k in November realistic - I am aware of the C25K plans out there and even have a book telling me what to do......... I just need a real & honest answer (or five) from people who actually run!! 

 All advice greatly appreciated, thanks in advance.


03/09/2011 at 19:27

I started running when I was only severly obese... using a C25k programme.  I made the error fo trying to go to far too fast too soon - and ended up with shin pains and hip issues.  After physio and treatment I restarted and was encouraged to walk 5 times a week for 30mins - to get use to the time out to exercise and get use to being on my feet - then I restarted the programme.  This time sticking to it like glue and was told that I should finish each session feeling I could do one or two more intevals.

 Rather than roads I ran off road to give my knees and shins a chance as even with cushioning and support from my shoes it wasn't enough.

 I went out the three times a week running but cycled and swam a little to help as well as watching what I ate and I managed to build up nicely on the C25k programme.

Their is a C25k podcast is on the NHS website

03/09/2011 at 19:38

Hi crazy lady

well done on wanting to make a start. If you are worried in any way it might be worth visiting your gp to get him/her to check that there is no reason in terms of physical health for you not to run.

It would be a good idea to follow a program, make sure you have decent running shoes and a good sports bra.

If you are already used to walking, then you can try jogging for small parts of your walks and build up slowly. Don't be afraid to run slowly - I do, and I still take walking breaks if I feel the need.

good luck 

03/09/2011 at 20:09

Well done for deciding to start... that is a good way to begin

As the others have said... make sure you have good trainers and a good sports bra. It is always worth checking with your GP first.

Consider what Bright White Trainers has said, because this may very well be the case for you too.

Then start a very slow run for one min and then walk 5 mins. Start with 30 mins of activity and slowly increase your run time each week. (which is pretty much what a C25K will advise.)

The slow run should be slow enough so that you can still talk. If you are on your own then recite a poem, song, or just talk to yourself to make sure you are going slowly enough. 

Don't do more than 3 walk/run sessions each week. You will need the rest days. However, if you are feeling well enough then you can do a short walk on your 'rest' days.

Yes, I think November for your first 5k is realistic (even if you have to take a short walk break in the middle) - all the best!

03/09/2011 at 20:11
Sorry, that sounded very bossy! - I'm not an expert and have only been running for a couple of years but have met lots of other people just starting out even with very severe weight issues.
04/09/2011 at 07:43

Hi Crazylady. I agree with what the others have said and check with GP first then get proper trainers from a running shop. Take it slowly and add little runs into your walks. I would reccomened going very slow at first but you soon build up. I started out walking at 15st 5.5lb which was classed as obese. I added some running but did it too fast and got injured so I would reccomened following a programme. I did have the intention of losing weight though so I joined a slimming group and did swimming inbetween the run/walking. I am now pleased to say that over 2 years later I am a healthy weight and I do find my running a lot easier. Keep us updated on your progress you can do it .

Off road too on softer surfaces like BWT said.

05/09/2011 at 19:27

Hi Crazy lady

I started in January  this year at the Gym on the treadmill as I was also a big lady.  I don't post much but I can  tell you that I am now 4 stone lighter have run two 10ks one in June in 1hr 43 and one two weeks ago in 1hour 12.  I have also in the last month joined a running club and they are really supportive.  I have received nothing but support and encouragement from the forum and also when I've been out running.  It hasn't been easy but I really love my regular plods.  I have been heckled at the beginning when I eventually ventured outside the safety of the gym to the roads and the fields but the feeling of losing weight and the feeling of the wind and sun on my face could not be spoilt by kids yelling at me that "I'm going to start a Tsunami" or have you "escaped from the Zoo".  I still have wobbly bits and I'm never going to be Kate Moss but I get such a lot of enjoyment from plodding I really hope you give it a go. I have also done the c25k programme and it is really good,Laura the narrator is in your ear all the time with some really good tips and you can download the podcasts from Itunes for free.  It did take me longer than 9 weeks to get from 20 to 30 minute so I increased from 21 - 22 - 23 etc over a four week period.  I can plod for 30 minutes.  PS even if you run and walk the 5K you've still done it.  On my first 10k  I was last by a long way but the marshalls and other runners gave me a big clap when I came over the line and you get a real buzz, like a good glass of wine without the headache

Enjoy, Enjoy, Enjoy


05/09/2011 at 19:42

Aw Twinkle, what a lovely post

I remember you coming on here, all nervous before your first 10k. So glad you're still running and a huge well done on the 1 hour 12

Hi Crazylady,

I hope you take inspiration from Twinkle's achievements and well done for starting. Good luck and keep coming on here for advice / encouragement!

05/09/2011 at 20:21
You could try the Hal Higdon 30 / 30 programme to stary you off - HERE
05/09/2011 at 20:25
Keep at it and the weight will just drop off you. Good luck.
05/09/2011 at 20:31
Jog a bit. Walk a bit. Eat less. Eat better.
05/09/2011 at 21:09

Hi Twinkle

I remember when you started too. So good to hear. Congratulations!

06/09/2011 at 21:37

Hi Crazy lady

How is it going ?

Best bit of advice - enjoy it and listen to your body . The weight will drop off you.

06/09/2011 at 22:12

Hello Crazy Lady

Just wanted to let you know I am just starting C25K too - not sure if I am morbidly obese or not but definitely obese - have a minimum of 4 stone to lose, maximum of 6.  So if you need a buddy to start with.... I'm here!  I did the first part of week 1 last night on the treadmill, felt over the moon afterwards, grinning like an idiot - couldn't believe I did it! 

Good luck to you, and Twinkle Star, your post was brilliant and very inspiring!

07/09/2011 at 20:57

Hiya Everyone,

 Thanks to you all that have given advice, encouragement or shared an experience with me.

I've gone & entered the Maid Marian 5k on 6th November and my aim is to finish it.   I'm not bothered how long it takes, all i'm bothered about is finishing having run at least part of the way..........and that does mean more than just the first 15 yards!! 

I know i could walk it if i chose to, in the recent past i've walked further than this - running some/most of it is going to be the challenge for me.

I shall let you know what happens in just under 2 months (EEEPP)

Thanks again


07/09/2011 at 22:14

Hello Crazy Lady

 I was just wondering how you were doing.  Well done for entering the 5k, I bet if you are determined you will be able to run ALL of it!  You will be much fitter by then, after all and as you say, you can already walk further than 5k.

Are you going to keep us up to date with how your training is going?  It would be great to have someone else to progress through the C25K with.

 Anyway, good luck!  You can definitely do it. 

PS I've just done my second "run" of week one.  AND.... have lost 2lb in the 2 days since I started!!!

10/09/2011 at 01:30


 i'm new to running and to this site.  I've been reading it for advice for the last few days and have decided to take the plunge .  I'm very overweight and am looking to lose weight and shape-up .  Have decided it's time to be more active and get out of the house a bit more. 

 Thanks for the post Twickle Star, it's very inspiring .

There's a few running clubs close to my home and i'll be going for the c25k programme with my 1st run/jog/walk/crawling-on-all-fours starting today .  Will take it easy and will settle for some intense walking rather than too much jogging.

My useless computer keeps crashing, so i can't log-on often but thanks for the great advice on this site and good luck Crazy Lady, Poohstril and all the other newbies .

10/09/2011 at 03:12
the imformation is great ! we can try it !

10/09/2011 at 07:41

Ah! Best of luck to all you newbies!

Something I've found helps to keep the weight under control is little changes to lifestyle.
I mean things like taking the stairs instead of the lift or escalator, or walking to the shop for the newspaper etc. It doesn't feel like training, but it is. A little here, a little there all adds up and it soon becomes second nature and you don't even think about it as exercise - but it is.

On your rest days, why not go out for a pootle on a bicycle? It won't put pressure on your joints and the feeling of the fresh air in a nice leafy park is unbeatable.

Or get a dog! They have to be walked every day, twice a day to be healthy in body and mind. When I'm tempted to stay in bed at the weekend I can't because I have a responsbility to the mutts. Same thing after dinner - they have to go out, so my lounging about on the sofa is limited.

Borrow an elderly neighbour's dog if you haven't got your own!

It's addictive this outdoor lark!

10/09/2011 at 17:48

wow - great that you big newbies are doing it. Have  been obese and   was etching towards it again last year. Now doing Binghams Run/Walk schedule (he also has a walk/run one where emphasis is on walking more). 

 For you real biggies , I'd say get walking first and as AZA say the outdoor lark is addictive. I have a great dog that I take out after every slight food indulgence. 1/2 hour after small bar of choc does it. I otherwise eat the 2,500 needed for a bloke of my size to stay the same and it is my run/walk that burns a bit of that off so I lose weight. Lost 1 1/ stone in 3 months or so

sometimes it is just being mindfulover calories in and what you burn. Don't have to be obsessive about that.

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