Out of all my blogging friends, I have known Jenn the longest. We’ve actually known each other since junior high school and shared many classes in high school. I’m proud to say she was one of my first clients. She came to the open house I held when I launched Thrive Personal Fitness and won a free training program. I am sure I overwhelmed her with way too much info in those couple of meetings. I was learning my craft and excited to share EVERYTHING. Luckily my enthusiasm didn’t scare her too much. I like to think I planted a seed that has led to an amazing transformation.
Now the student has surpassed the teacher. She not only has gained her personal trainer certification, she also ran her first marathon. She came home to Springfield for the occasion and I was lucky enough to get to spend some time with her while she was here. I took the opportunity to ask her reflect a little on an experience she shared on her own blog – gaining weight while training for a marathon. It’s some great food for thought if you’re thinking of training for your first marathon. -Pamela
Recently on my own blog I had shared a post discussing not relying on running to lose weight. There are several reasons for it and I decided to read my post now after the marathon to see if my perspective changed; it didn’t. I loved every minute of the race and do not regret having run it, I even plan to run another marathon or two or four in my life. However I did see an impact to my body composition that I am not happy with. The scale stayed the same range 145-150lbs, but the lean muscle vs. fat…eek!
- My belly got bigger.
It’s my most challenging area in my body. My body type carries most of its fat in the stomach area so it’s the first place I gain and the last place I lose fat in. Chalk it up to bloat from increased carbs (simple starchy ones), a belief that I can afford to “cheat” a little, or poor food choices it all played out the same.
- My biceps (and other muscles) got smaller. *sniff sniff*
I have no one but myself to blame for this I know. I started getting so consumed with getting the mileage in that I all but stopped any resistance training. It took a lot of energy both mental and physical to run as many miles as I did. I bow down to those runners out there that easily do both; I don’t know how they do it. Cardio is my best friend; I love it and want to do it for ever. If I could get away with only running and still get the body I wanted I would in heartbeat. I stayed on that marathon high until sometime this week I think. However, I don’t like the “extra flab” that I see in my body. I will have some due to having all the weight I did for so long, but I can fill things out with muscle and make it just feel better that way too.
- My eating got out of control.
I seriously had a hard time with this area, I struggled for so many years with eating huge portions. I got it under control and then I started needing more calories for energy with the intense training. It wasn’t just that though, I also felt the entitlement to eat junk, like onion rings and beer. I had some definite returns to old behaviors and it didn’t help.
So again, you may think I regretted doing the marathon, but I don’t. It really was one of the best moments I have had in my life so far. I know I will do more of them, but next time I hope and plan to be wiser. In fact I am working on being wiser now rather than later. I realize that I want to be able to run for as long as possible in my life and I want to have a kick butt arms/glutes/abs/back. If I want that then I have some work to do, and I have started (ouch). I have already started lifting and have finally put a workout program together for myself and starting some cross training (yoga and body pump). As for my eating, I struggle the most with my evening meal so I will focus on mindfulness and using some measuring cups/scales with it.
I still run, it’s my treat or reward for the day or even the week. I can’t wait to put my shoes on and get out there and stretch my legs. I have two races planned already, half marathons right now, and I will make a few more races this year. The difference will be that now I know what I am doing and what I need to change to make it work for me.