I'm in a similar position with regards to weight, but haven't been running for as long as you. If you've managed to run so far, I would carry on; because your weight loss will be far quicker if you do! Just take it easy and perhaps try some other stuff as well (I have a dodgy knee, so do BodyPump twice a week to try and keep the surrounding muscles strong to help protect my knee).
Hope this helps.
Well having once weighed 16st 10 and now 11st 0 (actually, last weigh-in was 11st 1, but that was after having five hot-cross buns for breakfast, more than my usual bowl of chocolate porridge ) - I used to think I was "too big" for running, and certainly before I knew anything about running at a sensible pace and building it up, I would get into the habit of trying to run 3x/week (too fast) and ending up with shin-splints. So my approach was to get down the gym and partake in activities which I knew didn't leave me niggly or injured, namely cycling/spinning, other cardio, and subsequently weight training/core exercises. One obvious thing here though - if you decide to add any kind of exercise time to your weekly schedule, do it gradually, or substitute for other things, e.g. substitute a gym class for a run till you get a bit fitter, then add the run back in, etc.
I started running "properly" once the first three stone had gone and it just felt a little more comfortable, BUT if I'd known at the outset all that I know now about running, I probably would've given it a go much sooner, and just built it up more sensibly. IMO it's worth mixing up your exercise with different activities for a number of reasons. Firstly, you're not putting too much stress on any one thing (e.g. your knees, hips or running muscles). Secondly, your overall goal should be not just weight-loss but overall fitness, including improved aerobic fitness and strength - go for a run, then the next time go for a swim. Go to the gym a couple of times a week and lift some weights, or book a pilates class for core strength. The larger the proportion of muscles you're stimulating, the more you stimulate metabolism and calorie burn. Finally, if you're in the habit of doing different things then if you have any niggles from running, you'll find it easier to cross-train with another activity to keep the momentum going.
Nessie's right about the nutrition side of things as well because the two sides of the calorie equation are inextricably linked. I've never joined an organisation but did spend quite some time educating myself about nutrition, i.e. not just nutritional composition of different foods but the best time to eat them in relation to your exercise activity. Eat to compete.
So I suppose my short answer (i.e. opinion based on personal experience!) would be - keep running as long as it's not causing any problems, but mix it up with other activities as well.
Thanks for the replies so far, very insightful.
I'm currently not a gym member and to be honest I'm probably not going to go back and join one again anytime soon. Most of my local gyms force you to join for at least a year and don't offer any sort of monthly or pay as you go type membership.
The only type of exercise I seem to enjoy is cardio exercise (walking, jogging/running) as it actually makes me feel fitter afterwards. I've been toying with the idea of buying a bicycle but I haven't cycled consistently for about 20 years. I did attempt it again a few years ago and I sort of had forgotten how to do it! I live in quite a busy suburb and while there are bicycle lanes, I'd definitely need to go somewhere quiet to get used to it again and to build up my confidence on the bike.
Anyway so yeah I think I might go back to jogging again. I tend to jog on a mix of grass and tarmac as those two surfaces are in my local park. The tarmac seems to have been laid on top of the grass so it doesn't feel that hard. A physio woman I know also said that constantly stopping and starting training just contributes to the niggles and it's better to just build it up slowly but keep doing it consistently, rather than taking these breaks of a week or three!
I like walking and I try to walk to and from work each day which is about 3 miles or just under in total per day.
My diet is not great either. It's improving and I'm using My Fitness Pal which seems to be working and I don't find it super hard to stick to either. I just need to control my weekend eating and make a few small tweaks to my evening meals and I will be sorted.
I often have dreams of becoming a really good runner but at the moment I can't even break 40 minutes for a 5k so I have a long way to go, but dropping 4 stone can only help. Although as I say, my real goal is to get under 12 stone.
Any ideas for good leg exercises I can do at home? My quads are very tight and probably could do with being strengthened to help avoid knee issues. Any suggestions for good exercises I can do? I was thinking of just doing like 3 sets of say 12 squats per day or something. Any thoughts?
I had planned to go for a run this morning before work but didn't go. Well I said I had planned to go, it was sort of a "Eh, if I feel like it, I will go" attitude and I just couldn't be arsed getting out of bed to go. I prefer to run in the mornings anyway as I always have more energy than I do come evening time.
have you seen this....
+1 for myfitnesspal - recording what you eat is a real eye-opener - and mfp makes this easy - and it will help prevent you from eating all those calories burned through exercise.
Easy does it - as long as weight is going in the right direction the most important thing will be not to get injured. Run if you are comfortable but walk otherwise - you will still get the training benefit.
Good on you! Just go for it and don't pay any attention to unpleasant responses or negative people.
As for whether to run now or after you've lost a bit of weight, do what you feel like but if you run while very overweight, just be aware of the extra stress you're putting on your joints, muscles and ligaments. When I'm more than a couple of stone above what I feel is my best running weight, I can jog slowly no problem, but if I try to run fast I usually pull muscles and/or end up with aching joints. Power walking might be better for you to start with.
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