Down To 203lbs – Losing Weight With A Marathon Training Schedule For The First Time Ever!
In what is my last weigh-in before the Paris Marathon itself I’m pleased to report to you that I’m down to 203.2lbs from 213lbs at the start of the year.
In my past two marathons I gained weight over the course of the training schedule. It seems inexplicable when you think about how many miles I ran at the time, but looking back it’s obvious.
Here are 6 tips on how to lose weight (or at least how to prevent yourself from gaining weight!) during marathon training.
- Don’t eat when you aren’t hungry – Again this seems like I shouldn’t have to be explaining it but you hear so much fucking nonsense from the “breakfast is the most important meal of the day” rabble that you can easily fall into that line of thought. If you aren’t hungry at 8am and you typically have a great appetite like I do, leave it a little while. If you have the tendency to over-eat, then don’t eat when you aren’t hungry because you will fucking over-eat when you aren’t hungry (even after a buffet and a bottle of Wine).
- By all means reward yourself after your long run –But don’t be fucking stupid like I was. The first time I ran 18 miles I went fucking insane with ego and thought I had made it into the big time. To celebrate, I had a 12″ pizza, half a bottle of Scotch and 6 pieces of original recipe KFC…….I was out of action for the next 2 days with the shits. These days I just have the 12″ pizza. It’s enough to replenish my body without taking anything else away.
- Don’t overdo the tapering process – I am no professional but the first few times I tapered I sat around in a state of a panic thinking “shit I’ve gotta run 26.2 fucking miles, I’d better eat to avoid imminent mental collapse!”. Tapering should be about powering both your body and your mind down to be ready for the event. You won’t be any more ready for a marathon by sitting around for 3 weeks eating nothing but fucking chocolate.
- Keep the marathon in mind, but don’t let it overpower you in the months before – The marathon is a big fucking challenge, but it isn’t above anyone. You can meet it by respecting the distance and running a little more or eating a little less shit in the build-up. The tendency when you’re starting out is to feel overwhelmed and to stop running and to resort to junk food again if training isn’t going well. This is to be expected if you’re starting out though but the key is to get back on track as quickly as possible. Just because you didn’t run today doesn’t mean that you can’t go out tomorrow and run a storm and eat better. Give it a go again, one more time.
- Most importantly, don’t just expect the weight to come off just because you’re running long – You’ve gotta keep track of what you’re eating and how far you’re running. You won’t lose weight if you aren’t expending more calories than you’re intaking. Last year I was running 40 miles a week and still gaining weight. This is only because I was eating well over 4,000 calories a day (I had something of a hot dog dependency at the time). Nowadays I try to track everything I eat with MyFitnessPal.com and then pair it off with my Garmin Connect stats.
- Try to make marathon training fun – The only reason I managed to lose weight this time is that I entered the marathon and decided to train for it! If I hadn’t enjoyed some of the training with the last 2 marathons, then I’d have never tried it again and likely lost fitness and gained more weight. Marathon training will get easier and more fun if you just stay with it. The most important thing for me is that I tried again and learnt from my past mistakes and it has actually been pretty fucking fun.