Some weeks ago I sat with this forum, and decided that I would start posting my progress. After watching the Olympics, and spending time chasing a crawling baby around the room, muttering “I’m too old for this” I decided that I would start the Couch to 5k. I don’t know why. I’ve never been interested in running or any sports for that matter. I gave myself the online name Davidnotarunner and wrote the following as my bio. “I am overweight with a protruding stomach, diabetic and insulin dependent, on Statins. My lifestyle is… sat down mostly. I get tired walking up the stairs. Used to live a smoking and drinking type of life, but now have a young baby who in a few years may ask me to play football…” That short intro isn’t even the half of it.
Pretty much my whole life I was a professional musician playing in a band, with a lifestyle that suited the scene. I gave myself diabetes. Insulin shots about 7 times a day. Smoking. Alcohol. Energy drinks. Finally after the birth of daughter 3, I gave it all up. Found a deep love for sitting down and eating rubbish food. “Retired” and selected a desk job in an office. (I kind of lived my life backwards.) My weight increased. Hitting 15 1/2 stone at my heaviest. But who cares right? I’m 5’ 9” so that’s technically in the very high BMI category! I became slow, sluggish, out of breath easily. My doctor prescribed statins due to various appalling blood test results. But I just ignored it. Forgot to take insulin. Kept eating badly and continued to drink to excess. Walking to the shop became hard work. Getting upstairs became hard work. Then my son was born a year ago. He’s late to the party. (My eldest daughter is 18!) And he’s like owning a terrier! He’s active. He’s naughty ( in a good way.) and he’s into everything! And I’m 40. Overweight. And shattered!
The running started. Week 1 run 1, I knew that I would never complete this program. 40 seconds of running made my lungs burn. My legs ached. I just could not do it.
I literally don’t know what made me carry on. But I did.
The last time I did anything remotely sporty was about 32 years ago.
And yet, here I am.
I started the program with a weight of 13st 6 on a good day. A stomach measurement of 41”. And a deep hatred for over exertion.
And yet, here I am.
Nine weeks on. I now weigh under 13st just about. My stomach has lost 4 inches. And I’m running for 30 minutes. I have also kept to a 1650 calorie diet, of whole foods and a 3 times a week weight training/ HIIT program!! I now take insulin only 2/3 times a day as required. I drink alcohol once in a blue moon, greasy food doesn’t agree with me, and I spend my rest days planning my next workout / run.
If it hasn’t been said enough before, this program works. And it’s changed my life. My doctor is now talking about taking me off statins!
I am now a runner.
Thanks to the program. The voice of Laura in my ears. The help, advice, assistance and support on this group.
Like my father told me “once you pass your driving test, that’s when you really learn to drive.” So I know my graduation is just the beginning.
My advice, for what it’s worth… in no particular order…
We all felt the same when we started this.
No one thought they would succeed.
No one found it easy.
We all started for a reason.
Invest in proper shoes.
Dedicate regular running days.
Wear bright Lycra! It’s liberating!
Remember that you become invisible when you run.
Give yourself permission to have bad days.
Get some music on!
Read Iannodatruffe’s notes!
Enjoy it when you can. You won’t enjoy them all.
And finally, eat well, sleep well, hydrate well, listen to your body and rest, because that’s how muscle builds!
I will bask in the glory of my graduation for a brief moment now. I did it. I can run for 30 minutes. Go me! Today I completed the Couch to 5K. I actually totally did it! Nearly 5k, which is perfectly ok. I’m going to take the weekend off. Maybe even eat a little junk food. Because for once in my life, I’ve actually earned it.
Well done to everyone who takes that step to start. I know from the last 40 years, it really is the hardest thing to do. Keep going. Strive to be fitter. You can and will surprise yourself.
Don’t think that is the last from me, or that I’ll be signing off. I’m onto week 10. Let the consolidation begin.
Signed “The artist formerly known as Davidnotarunner!”