Marathon Training Week 1 Complete! Now on to Week 2!

Week 1 of Marathon Training is officially complete! 15 miles total for the week (I know, not that huge, but still!)

I’ve also managed to drop about another 5 lbs in the past two weeks, bringing my total weight loss to right around 95lbs! I’m getting tantalizingly close to that magic three digit number.

My motivation has remained pretty high this week, despite that difficult 4 mile run earlier on. I did another three mile run this past Thursday at the track at dusk, and it was one of my best runs ever. It was actually really relaxing, and I felt fantastic! Best of all, I barely felt any soreness the following day.

Saturday was my long run day. The training plan calls for week one’s long run to be 5 miles. Instead of looping around the track 20 times, I decided to pay my old friend, the Bayonne Bridge, a visit. Before, when I would run the bridge, I would just go across to the end, then turn right back. This time, my route would take me into the town of Bayonne for about a mile or so.

Now, the incline on the bridge itself is pretty long and steep. But, when I got into Bayonne itself, I found out that the terrain was rather hilly, making for a pretty difficult run. In hindsight, I probably wont take that route for a long run for a little while, only because it’s very taxing – combined with the longer distance, it’s not an easy run at all.

After I got home, showered, rehydrated, and ate, I felt like a million bucks. My body is really starting to get used to this, and I’m reaping the benefits of a healthier lifestyle – more energy, confidence, and much less fatigue. Well, that wraps up Week 1. Stay tuned for Week 2!

– therunningfatguy

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Day 2 of Marathon Training

It was hell. That’s all that could be said about today’s run. It was really hot, I was more sore than I originally thought, and I probably could’ve used an extra day of rest before hitting the track again. Nevertheless, I did my 4 miles.

Whenever I go out running, I try to keep to one strict rule: once I start running, I don’t stop unless there is an obstacle that I cannot go around. I keep going until either the mileage for the day has been covered or if I feel like I will drop if I continue. I stopped twice today.

For those of you in the NYC area, you know today was a scorcher (something like 87 degrees). Most of the other runners on the track were taking breaks too, so I didn’t feel as bad, but still… I don’t like stopping!

I hit the wall at the end of mile two, and started calling it a day from there. I walked to my car, stopped, and looked back at the track. I thought to myself, “better to get the 4 miles in, even with stopping, than to go home having only gone halfway.” With that, I marched back to the track, gave myself one walking lap, and continued on.

It was so hot that, in order to keep from passing out, I kept my pace to a slow shuffle. I maintained that for the next 3/4 mile until I had to stop again. I gave myself another 1/4 walk and finished up with what was the most grueling 1 1/4 miles I have ever run. I did have this odd burst of energy in the last lap, where I was able to get back to a decent clip and finish relatively strong, but after that I was wiped out. When I got home, I weighed myself and found that I lost 5 lbs of water weight! Too bad that’ll be back soon.

Today was hard, but I was able to maintain my motivation. Never quit!

-therunningfatguy

Staying Motivated

I have to say, probably the most difficult aspect of any fitness program is staying motivated. Sure, it’s easy when you’re seeing results right off the bat, and the notion of “working out” (yeah!) is fresh in your mind. Give it a few weeks. Maybe one or two months. How do you feel then?

A few of you may be able to answer honestly with, “yeah, I love working out! I can’t imagine not doing it!” Those few are the minority. Most of us probably have excuses for why we stopped or significantly slowed down. Hell, it’s hard to keep up a workout regimen with work, and everything else in between!

Tell me if I’m wrong, but have you ever thought to yourself, on a workout day, “I’m really not feeling this. Missing one day won’t be so bad”? The answer is most likely yes, but those of you who answered yes probably know that, if you take that day off, there is a huge potential that you’ll continue down that slippery slope to inactivity and those hard-earned gains will fade.

Now, I’m not saying that you should never miss a workout; that’s impractical. Injuries can and do happen, as well as other things that life throws at you. What you have to keep in mind is why you’re working out – look at the big picture. The opposite may help too; try to take it one workout at a time. Keep these things in mind to help you get back on track in case you lose sight of things.

The most important thing to do though, if you’re lacking in motivation, is to just get off your ass and do it! Don’t give yourself too much time to dwell on how sore you might be, or how tired you might feel – just do it. 9 times out of 10, you won’t regret it!

Here are two of my favorite motivational quotes:

“Life should NOT be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive and well-preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, covered in scars, body thoroughly used up, totally worn out and screaming, ‘Yahoo! what a ride!” – unknown

“Now if you are going to win any battle you have to do one thing. You have to make the mind run the body. Never let the body tell the mind what to do. The body will always give up. It is always tired in the morning, noon, and night. But the body is never tired if the mind is not tired.”
– George S. Patton, U.S. Army General, 1912 Olympian

Now, my legs are sore, and I’m not exactly feeling well, but I got a four mile run to do today. I’m just gonna go out there and do it. Who’s with me?

-therunningfatguy

If you have tips for staying motivated, leave them in the comments section.

He’s Back! He’s Stronger, Faster (and Thinner) Than Before!

Hey Everyone!

It’s been a REAL long time since I’ve updated this blog. Too long as a matter of fact. I have seen this happen to many of the other weight loss blogs/running blogs on the internet that I have found. Usually, there is always a post similar to the one that I’m writing now. They almost always say “Well I fell off the wagon, but I’m back…”  That’s NOT the message you’ll see here today.

I’ve been doing my thing, just haven’t been writing about it. I’ve just about reached my first major weight loss goal – I’ve dropped 90+ pounds so far, and I’m still going strong. Am I still running the marathon? The answer is YES!

Initially, I was going to put things on the back-burner marathon wise until 2012, but I decided that there is no better time than the present. Today marks day 1 of my 18 Week Marathon Training Program.

It was an awesome 3 mile run at the College of Staten Island (CSI) track. It’s been a little while since I’ve been there, but after the first mile I fell into step and ended really strong. Am I ready for 26.2 yet? Hell no. Will I be ready by November? You bet!

I would never had reached the weight loss goals that I attained without help and support from my awesome friends and family, and I am going to ask for that same support from you guys again to complete the marathon. Along with the moral support, I need help with fundraising – I’m really bad at it. My goal is to raise $2,600.00 by October 6, 2011. If you would like to help me reach that goal, click here. I’m running as part of the Team for Kids NYC Marathon team. Learn more about them here.

Well, that wraps up this post for now. I will definitely post more often from now until the marathon. Thanks for everything so far, and please continue to help me reach my goals! I can’t do it without you!

-therunningfatguy

Week 10, Day 1

So, in my last post I brought all of you up to speed with my accomplishments and current goals. I’m glad to say that I signed up for what will be my first 5k run! It’s the Jingle Bell Run/Walk for Arthritis, hosted by the Arthritis Foundation on December 5th. Being that I also suffer from arthritis, I figured this would be both a worthy cause, and a fun first race to enter. My initial fund-raising goal is $100, and I will need your help to meet or hopefully surpass that. Here is a link to my donation page with more information and ways to donate:

therunningfatguy’s Donation Page

On to the running…

Well, my last two runs were pretty hard. Yesterday, I decided to enjoy the nice weather with a scenic run at Clove Lakes Park in Staten Island. It is a gorgeous park, complete with ponds, trees, and all that good stuff. It also has some treacherous hills, which made the climb up the Bayonne Bridge seem like nothing. Nonetheless, I did my half-hours worth of running and went home sore, but victorious.

Today, I decided to reintroduce my kettlebell routine as a pre-run resistance workout. I had been doing this before, while I was still doing the run/walk, but stopped when I  began running 30 minutes straight. After 100 kettlebell swings, (following a proper warm-up of course,) it was off to the track for a two and a half mile run. Boy was that run HARD. I felt tired after the first lap, which usually indicates a hard run ahead. I labored through it though, and finished.

I decided to start a 10k training program, since I feel that I can handle the distance with another 8-10 weeks of training.  With this program, I could definitely handle the 5k distance by the time the Jingle Bell comes around, and I should be primed and ready for the Cold Feat 10k in February.

Well, thats all for now folks! As always, questions, comments, and suggestions are always welcome.

-therunningfatguy

 

Update (FINALLY!)

So, I know I promised a beginning of week 8 update last time, but I did not deliver. I’ve been doing a pretty bad job of keeping you guys updated with this blog, and that trend may continue for the rest of this semester unfortunately. One thing I will promise you though: My running breaks won’t be nearly as long as the time between updates here! (lol)

I announced on Facebook two weeks ago that I finally reached my 8 week goal of running for 30 minutes straight. I did it! The first part in my long journey is complete. It’s such an incredible feeling to start a program like this, stick with it through the hard parts, and accomplish your goal(s). Not only am I running strong(er) now; I’m 15 pounds lighter!

I’m putting in 2 miles or so on each run now, which feels GREAT! Next up, I am training for my first 5k, which I feel I can run, (with proper training, of course,) in the next 3 -4 weeks. After that, it’s right into a 10k program. I don’t know where I will do my first 5k race yet, but there is a 10k race on Staten Island called the “Cold Feat 10k” in February that I want to run. Does anyone have any suggestions for a good 5k race coming up within the next 2 months in NYC? Beginner-friendly races would be nice, as well as a race for a good cause.

As far as my running days themselves, I must say that running the 30 minutes straight has felt a lot easier than doing the run/walk splits. I don’t really know why. Maybe it has to do with the stopping to walk, or my increased fitness? I wonder…

I did take advantage of my newly rediscovered fitness this week, and ran over the Bayonne Bridge into New Jersey. I’ll start by saying that I don’t live very far from the entrance, so it wasn’t hard getting there, but the run itself was a bit difficult. For those of you who haven’t seen the Bayonne Bridge, this is it:



Bayonne Bridge

Bayonne Bridge - So beautiful at night

It’s a marvelous piece of architecture, although there is some controversy with it now since the clearance under the bridge is only 160 feet; some cargo ships have trouble getting through, and when the Panama Canal Expansion Project finishes, some cargo ships won’t be able to fit at all.

Running-wise, it’s a tough little run. For those who are better conditioned, of course, it would prove easier, but for me it was a great challenge. You can see from the picture that the inclines are a little steep. The bridge itself is 1 mile across.



Bayonne, NJ

At the end of the bridge and entering Bayonne, NJ. Time to head back!

It was pretty much half a mile up, half a mile down. I loved the down part as it gave me a rest after the long climb. Once I got across I snapped the shot above, then headed right back!

Back to Staten Island - Bayonne Bridge

Back up and over the bridge to Staten Island!

The climb back up and over the bridge was pretty hard, but I trudged along. I decided to snap a shot of the cool view from the apex of the bridge. If I’m correct, the body of water is the Kill Van Kull.

Top of the Bayonne Bridge

The view from the top - cue Rocky music

Then it was time to head back down into Staten Island:

Back to Staten Island

Heading back home, just a little farther...

Overall, this was a roughly 2.75 mile run – my longest to date. I will be doing this one again soon! I can only imagine what it must look like at the top at sunset. I’ll probably find out a little later on!

As always, any questions, comments or suggestions are welcome.

-therunningfatguy

The Only Easy Day Was Yesterday…

Hey everyone! It’s been a while since I’ve posted here, but I’m back. Last time I left you, I was at the halfway point of my 8 week program. Unfortunately, life’s commitments got in the way of my updating this blog.

I am happy to tell you all that I am currently nearing the end of week 7 and going into the final part of the program – week 8! I’m feeling stronger than I have in a while, I’m not as sore as I was a few weeks ago, and have significantly improved my running time and distance.

I have also introduced kettlebell training into my routine, as well as some pushups. I don’t have much more time at the moment for a comprehensive post, but if you tune in this weekend I will tell you all about what I’ve been up to lately , as well as talk about the last run of week 7 and my future running goals.

So now you all know I’m still alive and still running! Until next time.

-therunningfatguy

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