What is this “exercise” you speak of?

People who know me know I don’t run. Hell, I barely walk if I don’t have to. The last time I ran was in 9th or 10th grade. Almost 10 years ago!! And since then, I don’t run. Not for busses, trains, love, or anything. I may power walk to good food. I am eternally grateful for the genetics that have allowed me to keep a thin(looking) figure because without it, I would probably be upwards of 250 pounds.

This post is about my current plans, and for anyone who wants to follow along with me at a beginner’s attempt at taking up running!

My weight has always fluctuated but never have I stayed at 130 lbs for such a long time (5 ft 7 in for reference). I would love to be back down to 116, but I would settle for 118. For about the last two years my weight gaining schedule was as follows:

  • Sedentary lifestyle; weight plateaued at 123 lb.
  • February 2011: Start working 9-10 hour days. No car, sometimes no metro pass, so more walking. 120 lb.
  • June 2011: Body gets used to more active lifestyle; effects of working at a bakery add up. 126 lb.
  • August 2011: Get a second job. Start working 16 hour days. Go to school on days off. 122 lbs.
  • December 2011: Body gets used to it again. 126 lb. 
  • July 2012: Move back in with parents. Leave both jobs. Go from working 60-70 hour weeks, to barely 10 hours a week. 131 lb.

Now the reason my weight hasn’t gone super crazy is because I’m very self-conscious about my flubby flub belly, so when I feel it get a bit bigger I start crash dieting, cutting calories, and basically going on a low-calorie binge, and when I lose a few pounds, I see that as a green light to start eating unhealthily again. It’s a destructive cycle.

Now, all that background leads to the very exciting decision to take up running! I know, big surprise. Coming from the girl that responds to, “Hey, do you want to go for a hike?” with “Wow, it’s like you don’t even know me.”

It’s horrible! :D I dislike it. Granted, I’ve only been running for one week, but I still dislike it. From what I gather, most people hate it before they love it. It’s a lot of moving and sweating and heavy breathing and chest pains. But that’s what I get for being inactive for most of my life. I thought my childhood asthma had gone away after childhood, but nope, it’s just because I haven’t forced myself to breathe hard to test it.

What I do like about running however is that because I started so badly, even just on the second day, I saw immediate improvements on my stamina. And I guess because I’m a poke-the-bruise kind of person, I revel in the next-day muscle pains. It reminds me that, yes, I am working hard. The pain is proof that my suffering the night before was not in vain. That I am seeing results. My first day, I came home with jelly legs, having to walk up and down stairs, barely able to take a shower, and my arms hurt so much that I had trouble shampooing. Yes, apparently your arms hurt when you run! The next day was sore legs, arms, and obliques. And it felt, GOOD.

I’ve always drank a lot of water. During the height of my 2 jobs & school days, I would go through about 1.5 L of water a day. Now, I am actively trying to drink even more than that, usually about 2L a day, up to 3L. Drinking more water coupled with my new running regimen, I have already lost 4 lbs in one week! I’m sure most of it is water weight and since I’m peeing at least 6 times a day, the first few pounds are super easy, but it’s a nice confidence boost to see all my effort actually culminating in something.

My current path is only 1.5 km long, but I figure that’s a good start for me. Also, the distance from my house to a major street happens to be 0.75 km, so it’s convenient for me. Right now I’m taking it very slow, walking when I’m tired, which for the first day was more than half of it, but I am loving how quickly you see results. Here’s the difference in my first and second run!

Day 1:

Day 2: 


Once I am able to run the whole 1.5 km, I’m going to change my route into something longer. That first day, oh man that last leg was rough! But my iPhone decided to give me that one last push I need in the form of Childish Gambino. It served as my “Eye of the Tiger.”

Right now, I’m running every other day. Beginning with light jogging in my driveway to warm up the muscles, followed by some stretching, and then my run. Here’s to keeping up with the plan and hitting my goal weight of 116 lb!