Are You Cheating The Runner in You?

April 19, 2008 · 13 comments

I took a walk this morning with our new puppy Maddie (I’ll have to write up a post about her later, she’s a real cutie!), an approximate 4 mile loop to a local lake and back, with on occasional jog here and there. I probably only jogged about a half mile out of the four mile walk.

As I have been reminded of before, taking a break from cardio like I have been doing really makes it tough when you try to get back on the horse. So where I had jogged a couple of miles straight back in January, I could not even muster a quarter of a mile today. Granted, I had a 25 pound dog on a leash to contend with, but still, that is not the problem.

The problem is, I have been eating too much, of too poor quality, and not exercising. In the past as I thought about feeling guilty about making a poor food decision I related it directly to the scale. “Those 10 Thin Mints you just ate - that’s going to hurt you on the scale.”

But today as I was running I came to a different conclusion - those 10 Thin Mints had affected my ability to run in the way I want to be able to run. I realized that I had been cheating the runner in me who wants to be able to run that 4 mile loop instead of walking.

I honestly don’t know if this change in mindset is going to work but I am going to give it a try. As I catch myself contemplating poor food choices I am going to focus on the runner I am cheating rather than the scale.

Are you cheating the runner in you?

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Andrew is getting fit April 19, 2008 at 1:15 pm

You can get back on the horse John. Back when you posted about running 2 miles in a row you really inspired me. I ran 6 miles in a row the other day and I owe a lot of it to you and this website.

Weight Loss Blog April 19, 2008 at 9:24 pm

Hmm. Just STOP! I find that I am at my best, with eating, when I am consistently exercising.

Diana the Scale Junkie April 20, 2008 at 4:00 pm

As interesting as your whole theory is, I just couldn’t get past the whole PUPPY part, really John, stop cheating us out of Maggie photos!! ;-)

I’ve been working out a lot lately and I do think about how the food will affect my workout so I do think this is a great way to look at things.

violet April 20, 2008 at 10:08 pm

Thanks for this post, John. It inspired me to go out and do a 2.5 mile run - my old cross country race route. I have been cheating the runner in me by walking a lot - it feels like I’m still doing something, but you’re right, it’s not as effective for weight loss.

Since losing 13 pounds in 7 months, I’ve gained back 5 in the last two months - it’s frustrating and I’m trying to stop the slide.

I notice that like you, I eat something yummy without really thinking about it, it’s like my brain sees a sweet or high-fat food and just vacuums it up without consideration of a bigger picture.

I think one thing I will try to do this upcoming week is stop myself from popping something in my mouth without thinking at least once a day. Maybe you can try the same?

One of my favorite weight loss quotes is “Discipline is remembering what you want.”

Good luck this week! Thanks again for the post.

Alexa Cooper April 21, 2008 at 12:38 pm

It seems like weight loss is really a process, John. First you see that you weight to much and that it must be the food you put in your mouth. Next you understand that the food has a whole lot more effects on you than just pumping up your weight. Great revelation you had there.

I have actually been doing a lot of reading on sugar lately and what I found out is that sugar not only lets you gain weight, but that it is also a major cause in binge eating. The other thing I found interesting is that in the process of producing sugar, all nutrients are taken out. There is no vitamin or mineral in sugar. On the contrary, your body needs especially B-Vitamins to digest it and it takes them straight out of your body, leaving you with even less nutrients than you had before you ate the junk.

Learning to eat healthy is really one of the best things you can ever do for yourself.

John April 21, 2008 at 1:57 pm

“As I have been reminded of before, taking a break from cardio like I have been doing really makes it tough when you try to get back on the horse”

You are not the only one. I just took of two weeks due to illness. Today, I could barely run 3 minutes. Pathetic. In my defense, I don’t think I’ve entirely kicked this cold.

JEMi | MyFavoriteDietBlog April 22, 2008 at 12:08 pm

I know exactly how you feel. I used to be able to do pushups.. run my 2 or 3 miles months back

then.. well.. alot has happened

Getting back on the horse is hard but it feels good once you see yourself progressing and even surpassing what you’ve done before

Go you John.. for your honesty, for the progress you make just by showing up and sharing with us, and for knowing what the issue is and doing what you’ve got to when you catch yourself slipping


JoLynn Braley April 23, 2008 at 4:46 pm

I haven’t been a runner since I was in grade school (used to jog all the time), and today I’m a walker - paced walking, I love it.

Sounds like you’re really enjoying getting back into your running groove, hope it all goes well for you. :)

john - from fat to fit April 23, 2008 at 10:17 pm

@andrew - 6 miles!? Wow, that’s awesome. Damn, I need to remember how to inspire myself like that.

@israel - Just STOP sounds easy enough, why didn’t I think of that before? :-)

@diana - maddy photo to be up soon (just realized I spelled wrong in post)

@violet - glad I could be part of your inspiration, this is good for me to be reading, I should be inspiring myself right now and I am not. Vacuuming up my food is an apt description. Writing about it again is first step.

@alexa - damn straight it’s a process. and at times a long and arduous one at that. Good info on sugar, I think you are spot on. Now to do something about it.

@john - this has been a bad winter for colds a flu, hope you didn’t try to come back too early.

@jemi - thanks for the bravo, I’ll take it!

@jolynn - nothing wrong with being a walker, and I am assuming by paced walker you mean walking with a bit of a pace. I think that’s probably better on the joints that running and just as good.

JoLynn Braley April 24, 2008 at 11:29 am

Yep, paced walking means that I’m walking at a pace that sustains me in my THR for the entire 30 minutes - this burns the fat and gives me the best bang for my buck (for my workout time investment :) ). And you’re right - walking isn’t hard on the joints. I love it. :)

Cynthia April 30, 2008 at 8:34 pm

It’s not always easy to keep our goals front and center in spite of temptation. But we do have to give it our best to keep what we want out of life in mind each time our thoughts turn to slacking off, eating something unhealthy, etc…

I just take it an incident at a time. Sometimes I do well and overcome, sometimes I cave. My goal though is to make the times I do well outnumber and outweigh the caves.

Nancy May 8, 2008 at 9:50 am

Can we get puppy photos?

also, have you checked into the couch 2 5 k program? It’s awesome, and it will no longer cheat the runner inside you!

Weight Loss Workouts June 6, 2008 at 10:56 am

Discipline. It’s the toughest part of a weight loss program. It really takes a lot of discipline to be able to lose weight.

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