Posts Tagged ‘running’

Race 1/49 – Lifeskills Run for Autism

This past Saturday, April 11th, we did our first of 49 athletic events!

A little backstory first…

My wife works for the WKU Kelly Autism Program. As you can infer from the program name, it is a program designed to provide assistance and support for individuals with autism and Asperger’s. The program she works for recently held a 4 Mile Run and 1 Mile Walk to fundraise for their services.

Since she works for the program, we had to be there bright and early to help. Obviously, Moon Pie had to come, too.

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The turnout was pretty impressive. I was especially impressed by this young woman. I am afraid I can’t remember her name right now, but she has autism (and in fact, did not even speak until she was five years old). She sang the National Anthem before the start of the race.

Wow. That’s all I can say.

As I said in my last blog post, I am going to wear a different dork shirt to each race. For this race, I am wearing my Garbage Pail Kid Adam Bomb shirt!

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This will also be the first shirt in my dork quilt.

Tina and I were doing the walk instead of the run, which means I was allowed to be slightly obnoxious and take pictures as we went. (I promise – I didn’t stop walking. I snapped as I walked.)

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We pushed little guy in his stroller. He was pretty much zonked out by the time we were done.

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It was a nice, easy way to start our recommitment to a physically healthy life. And it was fun – this is only the third “race” I’ve been involved with. I definitely understand how people get hooked on this!

We’ve already signed up for our second “race.” It’s on April 27th!

Miles: 1 mile
Comments on Dork Shirt: 1

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The Next Week…

Long time, no write.

I’m still vlogging. I’m just slow about it.

But I’m blogging today because my weight loss is going much slower than it should be.

I weigh over 350 pounds. I should be able to lose two to three pounds a week, no problem.

I am not. I am losing roughly two to three pounds a month.

I know why. This isn’t a blog post where I lament my slow weight loss and tear at my hair in frustration.

No, I’m losing weight slowly because I eat too much and don’t move enough.

The end.

In an attempt to stop this, I have done/am doing two things.

The thing I am doing – for the next week, I will post a photo of everything I eat, report my weight daily, AND say what I did for exercise, here on the blog. I don’t want to say I’ll do it forever, but I am certainly planning to do it for more than a week. I just don’t want to say I’ll do it for a month (or three months… or a year…) right off the bat. So for now… I’m going to do it for a week.

I’m going to take photos of my food and post an Instagram mosaic of my food. I’m going to be completely honest – the good, the bad, and the ugly. I feel like my diet is extremely clean (mostly), but I still do eat the occasional candy bar or drink the rare Sprite. Still, feel free to comment, constructively criticize, or whatever else on my food choices.

Overall, we eat an extremely clean diet, but we do have our indulgences. I may be eating too many indulgences – I’m hoping this photographic food log will help.

The thing I have already done…

My family recommitted to a healthy lifestyle this weekend. On Saturday, we took part in the first of 49 athletic events.

I’ll blog about the event tomorrow.

So, the 49 things…

If you’ve been watching my vlogs, you know that I am a HUGE fan of dork t-shirts, and that I initially planned to wear a different shirt for every 10 pounds until I got to goal weight.

However, I have recently decided to slightly modify that.

Have you ever heard of a t-shirt quilt?

Basically, it’s just what it sounds like – a quilt made out of t-shirts. And it just so happens that my wife is incredibly crafty and knows how to quilt.

I want to make a gigantic King-sized quilt that will represent everything about my weight loss. When I get to goal weight, I want to hold this quilt up and say, “This quilt is a pictorial and nostalgic representation of me and the journey I took to today.”

I am going to have a collection of 49 dork shirts, representing (more or less) every five pounds (or so) of my weight from its highest (402.8) to my ultimate goal (currently set at 180, but we’ll see). I’m still in the process of collecting and making those shirts, but so far, they are primarily concerned with nostalgic things from my childhood, such as Power Rangers, Ninja Turtles, classic Nickelodeon, and some old-school Nintendo games.

Oh, and why 49? Because seven rows of seven quilt blocks (cut from the front of each t-shirt) is the size you need to make a nice big King quilt. I know my wife won’t let me put it on our bed, but it’ll be awesome to cuddle up under on the couch on a cold winter night.

That’ll be the front of the quilt.

The back of the quilt will be 49 patches from race t-shirts.

I’m not a runner. Right now, I’m just a walker. But Tina and I were talking about it, and we want Moon Pie to grow up in an athletic household. I want going to a 5K early one Saturday morning to be the norm for him. And for that to be the norm, we have to get started now, when he’s not quite seven months old.

I have no delusions of being a runner just yet. I currently weigh over 350 pounds. That’s too heavy for me to start running right now. I don’t want my knees or back to blow out. However, I can start walking events (a lot of races around here also contain a walking component), and I am.

At each event, I’ll wear a different dork shirt.

And when I am at goal, I’ll have my amazing quilt, one side dork and nostalgic and the other side t-shirts from races and other athletic events that helped make me a fit, healthy athlete.

So, to sum up…

I am going to start photographing my food and posting it, along with my daily weight, on this blog. I am pledging to do it for a week straight.

I am going to collect dork shirts AND complete 49 different athletic events as I progress to goal weight. Just an FYI – Tina has told me that one of the events MUST be the half-marathon (or marathon – dare I dream?) at Disney World. Frankly, I hope at least one of them is a Tough Mudder.

I once lost weight down to 250 pounds. I’m past being ashamed of gaining so much back. Now, I just have to get there and go farther.

I’ve done it once. I’ll do it again.

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An Open Letter from my Muse to Myself #2 –

Dear Jeremy,

The pounds are slowly coming off. That’s awesome. Keep it up. But there’s something else I want to talk to you about today.

On these electronic pages, you’ve shared many, many times your desire to be a runner.

You’ve tried it, many times, but frankly, at your current weight, it hurts your joints. That’s not a bad thing. It’s just a fact.

I can already hear what you are thinking.

“I hate that my cardio endurance is strong enough that I can run, but my joints won’t let me.”

“I hate that I have the desire to run, but the last time I tried, I literally ended up at the doctor’s office, getting a prescription for severe inflammation in my feet.”

“And to be honest… I hate that I am jealous getting to read others’ blogs as they progress from weight loser to runner.”

I want you to stop living in the realm of “I want to but…”

Screw that. There are things that you CAN do now.

You can’t run. Big freaking deal.

You can walk. Your legs are strong. Your joints may not be able to take 370 pounds of running, but they can sure take walking.

I know how much time you spend at the Bowling Green Road Runners website, looking at their calendar of upcoming races and fantasizing about joining their ranks.

So stop fantasizing and do it. There are going to be a lot of 5Ks this year that are also open to walkers.

Sign up, give your money to a worthwhile cause, walk the 3.1 miles, collect your t-shirt, and every step, every ounce lost, will put you closer to joining the ranks of runners you so desperately want to join.

You can do this. You will do this. You owe it to yourself.

Regards,
Mason

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3 of 15 – The Joys of Running

I think I’ve made it pretty obvious throughout this blog that I LOVE exercise. I enjoy fitness. I like lifting weights. I even like cardio. I LOVE the idea of signing up for races and collecting 5K t-shirts, moving on to harder races, and someday, maybe even claiming the title of Marathoner.

Please note – I love the IDEA.

The actual running itself?

Hate it. I hate it with the blue hot fiery hate of a superhot blue star.

I’ve tried and I’ve tried and I’ve tried. I’ve seen what, from my perspective, seems like the vast majority of fitness bloggers take up running, discover they love it, and then run races all the time. I’m jealous.

This is what my experience looks like.

I start off. I manage. When I’m doing runs shorter than five minutes in duration, I even find myself enjoying it. At least a little. I look forward to the day when I can sign up for a 5K and just go run it without having to worry about EVERYTHING. But then… it starts to suck. I find that it takes recovery time after a workout. I hobble the next morning. My knees ache. And then… just like that… running sucks.

And I stop.

I’ve done this at least six times now. Maybe more.

Will I do it again? Probably. In fact, my big decision (ever closer, I promise) may require it, albeit indirectly.

This time, I am going to wait. I’m doing great with my weight loss at the moment (I look forward to sharing a big loss in December!) but I really do believe that I need to weight significantly less for running to be safe for me.

I don’t know how long I will wait, but it’ll probably be a while. I definitely do not see myself trying to run until I am below 300 pounds. My body just can’t handle the stress and strain.

Frankly, if exercise is not enjoyable and does not improve the immediate quality of my life, then I am not going to do it. I’m not writing running off forever. I’m just writing it off for now.

Right now, I’m getting my cardio in in a few different ways. For one, I have my Wii. It’s actually a surprising way to get your body moving. I go for surprisingly strenuous walks that don’t hurt my joints but definitely get me sweating and my heart rate up. And of course, I lift weights.

I want to be physically active. At some point when my financial situation is better (not that it’s awful at the moment, but we still have some minor credit card debt and some major student loans to pay off), I plan to sign up for taekwondo again.

I want to have a family with Tina, and I want to be physically active. Notice I didn’t say thin. Frankly, yes, I want to be thin and fit, but the fact also remains, even if I somehow can never change the way my body looks, I plan to keep exercising because it makes me feel good.

When I was overwhelmed with work earlier this semester, I ended up going about two weeks without getting any real good workouts in. Working fourteen hour days can just kind of do that to you. I didn’t feel good. I felt lethargic. I felt even bigger than I was. I just felt run down. I need to be physically active so that I have that wonderful endorphin rush and my heart doesn’t feel like it’s going to explode if the elevator is broken.

Even more than that, I need to be physically strong because what I have planned is going to require it. I need to be strong, fit, and athletic. For a long time.

And if you are guessing, no, I’m not going into the military, either. Stay tuned. I’m normally not one who is a fan of, “Keep reading! I’m not going to share yet!”

But yeah, that is exactly what this is. One hint – you’ll either think it’s cool that I’m actually trying this or slightly insane. Maybe both!

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A Shirt Skirt Weigh-In

What the heck is a shirt skirt?

This is a shirt skirt. It’s a women’s skirt made out of a men’s dress shirt.

What does that have to do with me losing weight? I’ll explain below.

August 8, 2011
369.8
Change from Highest = -33 pounds

I don’t even remember the last time I had a normal weigh-in. It HAS been one of those summers. You know the type that are crazy busy? Yeah, but I’ve also been lazy and I’ve been slacking. Because the truth of it is, we make time for what is important to us.

I have moments, periodically, where something triggers, “Oh yeah, this is why it is important to lose weight and not die morbidly obese in my 40s.”

My wife Tina has a pinterest account. She’s been going on and on about how awesome it is, so I signed up, too. It’s cool; I don’t think I’m hooked yet, but while I was going through her pins, I came across one for a skirt shirt.

I asked her about it, and she said that as soon as I’ve lost lots of weight and can no longer wear my current dress shirts, she’s going to turn them into skirts for her to wear.

That simple comment really hit home. My weight loss is incredibly interconnected with everything in my life, especially Tina.

How can I be so selfish to stay obese? I have a loving wife. Aside from the obvious fact that I owe it to myself, I owe it to her, too. She deserves a healthy husband.

Yeah, I could care less about Tina making skirts out of my dress shirts. It’s just the big picture. Every action I make has repercussions. I choose to get up at 5:30 in the morning to go to the gym and run in the morning rather than sleep in. I want to be healthy, fit, and an athlete. I don’t want to be morbidly obese and continually buying larger clothing because I’ve upsized again.

So… I’m going back to the reward system I had LAST year at my blog before the move to this host. Those of you who were reading me back then may remember, but basically, I set myself five goals. Each goal is worth $1. If I make that goal, then that’s $1 that goes into a pleasure account for me. I can do anything I want with it.

If I don’t make that goal, then that $1 goes into a giveaway for you. When I’ve collected enough money to give away something fitness or health related, that’s what I’ll do.

So, my five goals for this week?

1. Get my weight down to below 367.
2. Run five minutes without stopping.
3. Drink a gallon of water on at least four days.
4. Eat a salad full of greens on at least five days.
5. Do yoga before bed at least three times.

Any shirt-skirt moments in your life recently?

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Weigh-Ins
12-31-13 - 412.0
1-3-14 - 407.0 (-5.0 pounds total)