Hello weakness, my old friend…

Things have been up and down a lot for me lately. Between trying to get my daughter to sleep through the night, having a pipe burst at the house, and being volunteered for a special project at work, I have been spent.

I haven’t lost sight of my goals though and have kept working toward them. I am still losing weight, just a little more slowly than before. I have been working out, but not as regularly. More and more sugar has crept into my diet, mostly because it’s just so darn convenient!! Nevertheless, things haven’t completely fallen apart.

I was missing being active and after having been so successful on my diet I was excited to get back on, full steam ahead. I started back last week and things have been going great, for the most part. I haven’t really lost any strength, though the workouts are a little harder than I remember. But I’m starting feel stronger already and I’m feeling good about it!

My running has been pretty sporadic though. Race season is fast approaching and I know I need to get it together, so last week I ran twice. The first run went great, the second was a bit more of a struggle. And after that run is when I felt something I haven’t felt in a long time… See, I have a problem where I can’t help but to always compete with myself. It can be a good thing, and it does drive me to work harder and be better, but it also gives me a lot of anxiety and can interfere with my success. Even though I tell myself these are to be nice, easy runs, I can’t help but always race the clock. Maybe one day, when I am trim and fit that will be great, but for now, this uncoordinated, over-weight, weak, damaged man has to realize that he’s not getting any younger and things just don’t hold up the way they used to.  I have to remember to take these things slow; progress doesn’t come overnight, and every run won’t be faster than the last.

I learned this lesson the hard way when I was losing weight 6 years ago for my wedding. As we know, I used to be an avid runner and had good muscle-memory from it in my legs, especially my quads. So when I started working out and doing leg exercises I was really pushing myself and it was going really well. The problem was that I was pretty overweight. I once heard that for every extra pound of body weight you’re carrying it adds four pounds of pressure to your knees. I believe it. All of that load was just too much for my patellar tendon, and I got a pretty decent case of tendonitis in my left knee. I stopped all high impact exercises, got a knee brace, did massages and eccentric squats. Short of steroid injections, sounds waves, and electro-stim, I did it all. And it took months before I could use stairs without my knee hurting. I was lucky that it never got bad enough that the pain would stop me from normal, everyday life, but it was always there, and it was always a reminder of how badly I had neglected my body over the years.

Well, after upping my activity and pushing myself my increased running volume I am sad to say my old friend is back. It is quite mild, at the moment. More of a tingling feeling than pain, but it is very, very familiar. I think I wasn’t paying attention to the fact that when I got it last time I was working out when I weighed about 260 (117 kg). I have recently lost about 40 pounds,  but I started at 300 (136 kg), which brings me down to… 260. I think I was excited and encouraged by my weight loss and thought everything would be ok since I have lost so much weight. But I never stopped to think about what my weight actually was.

It’s ok though. I’ve been resting it and it’s getting better, I will give it a few more days and I will go for a short, easy run just to try it out and see how it goes. If I ease back into it slowly, as I am losing weight I think I can get around a full-blown injury. I am also glad it happened now, when I have a couple of months to work on it before race season starts. I have too much planned to be sidelined by a stupid injury. Until then I will be continuing my strength training and I guess I’ll just do more indoor, low-impact cardio for now.

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