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Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Running may be a Bad idea for your Fat Spouse!

As a person who used to be an active and successful personal trainer, I'll tell you that it's a genuinely BAD idea for someone who is overweight to run or even jog.

I'm going to post some links as to why it's a bad idea to run if you are overweight but for now let me explain the matter in an easy to deliver analogy.

A woman whose body is genetically programmed to carry 126-154 lbs on their frame at 5'8" has ligaments, muscle tissue, connective fibers, etc all geared toward that genetic marker for weight.

If a woman weighed 126lbs when she was actively running 5 miles a day, then that is her baseline weight. Take the baseline weight from when she was active and then use todays weigh in weight.

Let's for the sake of arguement say that this woman weighed in at 176lbs.

176lbs (current) - 126lbs (base) = 50lbs of weight.

To be more blunt, that means that she has a ratio 40% over her baseline weight.

Multiply that 40% by her current weight and you get the equivelent stress to her knees and ankles... which is approximately 70lbs.

That means if you want her to feel what it's like on her body to run at this weight, then give her a backpack and drop two 35lb weights into the back of it and tell her to try jogging with it.

It will become very clear, very quickly it's a super bad idea.

So the question is when should she begin running? Can she begin running?

The answer is yes, she can start. But she needs to develop a running strategy that starts from the base and moves up. She has to start with a walking regiment first, then move up to light running focusing on maximizing her glide and reducing her up and down motion (less jarring on the knees). Eventually she can move up to fartlek or H.I.I.T. training.

The thing about running is that it is only good for fat burning up to a point. Long distance runners don't typically lose as much body fat as interval trainers, because our bodies are not naturally structured for endurance type athletics. Sure we can always train for a marathon, but our muscles work better for shorter sprint distances.

My professional recommendation is that she start off very slowly, and focus on form/technique, etc. It comes back quickly but it's rough. She also shouldn't increase her mileage by more than 10% a week.

Another thing you may want to get her is a stick of body glide. It is rubbed on the inside thigh and keeps chaffing away like magic. You can pick it up at any running store.

If you have the money, go to an equipment reseller or craigslist and buy a high quality eliptical trainer or simply get her a gym membership at the YMCA if she'll go.

The eliptical trainer will give her a decent cardio workout with no jarring to the knees.

If she wants to know if she's working hard enough, buy her a heart rate monitor watch with a chest band. It'll tell her how hard she is actually working better than her own guess. And frankly it makes workouts more productive when you have some kind of tracking device as to where you are cardiovascularly.

Speed walking and hiking are great exercise as well. I'd also recommend if she is going to run to cross train and to stretch. If her body starts to hurt at all, switch gears and let herself heal. That doesn't mean quit working out. It simply means do a non-impact version of exercise until any injury she sustains is gone.

As a former runner I am sure she knows that the warm up and cool down periods are critical to avoiding injury so I won't go there.

She might also want to consider buying a shoe designed for her increased weight and foot type. Not all shoes are created equally and a good running shop may charge retail, but they are staffed with runners who aren't highschool students that don't have a clue about topics like strike, pronation, etc.

If I can find articles about this, I'll send them your way. Hopefully you won't need any to convince her to take it very slow.

Mapping out a work out plan and keeping track of goals is a great way to get things done. Try mapping out her distance and times and setting goals weekly.

Sprint training will help with the speed... she just needs to be super careful.

Good luck and I'll dig for some articles (they are rare because so few obese people run).



Brother Crash wrote posted this on the My Fat Spouse Forum

1 comment:

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