So now that I have started down this journey, I need to figure out how I am going to get into shape as the weight comes off, so that not only can I be healthy – that remains the #1 goal, but to actually get into an exercise regimen that will be my signature for the rest of my life for goal #2 – a body that I am proud of.
When I attended the original seminar that got me into Dr. Snyder, one of the components was a panel of actual patients that were at various points in their post-op journey. Most still had a way to go, some were at their goal (and still looked a little heavy to me, but definitely happy and much, much healthier) and one guy _ Richard – was training for his 3rd or 4th Iron Man. He looked amazing. I was inspired. And of course that is the point of seeing real people with real results. To show you what is possible if you put the work in. And I am willing to put the work in.
I used to run in grad school – through a local cemetery (that’s a story for another day – I love the peacefulness of cemeteries)…..frankly, because I loved (OK – lived) to eat, and I was already about a size 10-12 and I wanted to hold it there if I could. And I was solid as a rock. I am – at my fighting weight – an athletically built, curvy gal. And my muscles remember that. It’s probably why the weight hasn’t actually done more damage yet. Bless muscle memory!
Did I mention that Dr. Snyder’s team includes weight/exercise specialists – seriously, people with PhD’s in this stuff – free of charge post-op to work with you on a plan that works for you? Their bare minimums are cardio 30+ minutes almost daily – think 5+ days a week. Most obese people have never done that. I did it in a far off land many, many decades ago. I digress…
I have never been a team sports kind of gal. I like to work out my own baggage in my own head. Hmmmmmm, now that I wrote that last line and then re-read it, it occurs to me that at least in the area of working on my weight that has not worked. Something to ponder.
Back to the running idea. I have watched the Biggest Loser for a long time. Quick sidebar – I recently found out that 95% of those people gain all of their weight back! I am quoting my surgeon for those of you that are curious. Why do they gain the weight back? I’m glad you asked – because in the real world where we all must live, you need a plan that you can actually MAINTAIN. FOREVER. Or – you go right back to being obese. Not too many people can live forever with a restricted calorie plan every day and work out 6+ hours a day. It gets in the way of the rest of your life. Remember, these are obese people who have already blown up their metabolism. Dieting does not work for obese people. We already blew up our metabolisms. Again, I digress.
At the end of the last several seasons, those people have run marathons. It occurs to me that they have nothing on me in terms of my desire to commit to training for something like that. It is inspiring.
So my plan – and my commitment to me – is to train for an official 5K race to start. That is a mere 3 miles. I see people pushing strollers and toddlers finishing those things! I literally walk that a few times a week with my Great Dane Asher. I just have to start jogging it after I lose some of my weight. Hard to jog with an extra 100lbs.
Then I want to do a 10K – doesn’t that actually sound impressive? A mere 6 miles. No toddlers or strollers here, people! I can do that in 2012. And my ultimate goal for 2012 is a half marathon. You heard me. 13+ miles. Official races give you a maximum of 4 hrs to finish. I could walk it in that amount of time today if I had to, so I am pretty sure I can pull this off – although the goal is to jog it. The HUGE goal is a marathon in 2013. Mostly because if I need to have surgery to get rid of excess skin (and I suspect I will), I don’t want to run a marathon while I am still dealing with that.
My plan is to start working with Dr Snyder’s team and then to graduate to a local running club. Where I can be with other beginners who are also training. Kind of cool and mind-blowing to think about. But I really need and want to set some goals here, otherwise what is the freaking point of all of this?
Of course, I will research running clubs, running shoes, running gear and local races to death. But as a time-waster, it’s a pretty good one.
And when I sign up for that first 5K, you are all invited to come cheer me on. It will be a good show because I am very likely to be running with tears dripping down my face just from the pride and joy of it. It’s been a looooooooong time since I had any pride in my physical self. And I am competitive enough to think I can beat the toddler and the stroller crowd. I like my odds.