What's my next step?
I'm 48 and I've gotten a complete physical. My doctors say I'm ok to try
this. I haven't smoked and have been trying to get in shape for four
What I've done is work Monday through Thursday, 40 minutes a day on the
'Stairmaster' for the last three months increasing the level every time I
start to get comfortable. I started on level 2 and I'm currently using
level 8, followed by 15 minutes of upper body weight work. I've ridden my
bike to and from work on Fridays, approx. 10 mi. total, and I've run in
organized races every Saturday. Sundays all I do is whatever my wife and
daughter tell me to do.
My minute per mile has improved from 13.31 on April 17th to 10.15 on July
31st. I've been in varying states of constant pain from the waste down for
three months. I've gone from 193 pounds to 176 and back up to 182. I've
spent a total of 80 dollars in running apparel, 16 of which on shoes.
My diet is basically the same as ever, ie; no breakfast, McD lunch, light
dinner and a six pack of beer. I sleep about 6 hours a night on the average
and have a stressful job.
I know I need to drink less, sleep more, eat better, etc. but what is my
next best step in improving my time? I once loved to run and I know that at
some point I'll feel the things I've lost. If you can help me get there
I'll run a lap for ya.
Well Pete - you have one part right on - i.e. listening to your wife and
daughter on Sundays!! Actually, you have another part right on, and the most
critical part I might add, i.e. regular exercise. Regular exercise, it turns
out, is the only biomarker for success in a long term weight management program.
We know from good research on the subject, that the best predictor of success in
maintaining ones weight, is participation in regular exercise. Period. That
said, I can't help but comment on your diet. First of all, if you fail to eat
breakfast, your body thinks you are starving, and will store fuel to "cope" with
your energy output. As a result, you will likely gain weight even though you are
exercising. A great deal of your caloric intake are empty calories, or low
octane fuel that will result in your blood sugar dropping, and reducing your
available quick energy. Further, the alcohol you drink, in addition to being
caloric, is a dehydrator, and it soumds like you are already dehydrated.
SO...eat breakfast, at Mickey D's, get a salad - no fries and a large,
Supersized cup of WATER. Drink ONE beer in the evening rather than the whole six
pack, and drink TWO bottles of water for each beer you do drink.
As far as your training is concerned, excellent scientific research recently
published suggests that CROSS TRAINING is the answer. Wind sprints, plyometrics,
and lateral lunges would be the way to go. Do two hours a week of cross training
- That is two - one hour sessions a couple of days apart. Also, search out
training guides/schedules to keep your mileage on track. Carbo load the week of
your race, and be properly hydrated on race day, and you will do fine.
Now, run a lap for me!