What I Hate Most!!!
How many times have you heard this phrase? How many times have you said it? How many times has it been the same? I know I say it often, usually it’s regarding kids not putting things away or leaving trash on the counter, sometimes it’s the dog getting into the trash and tearing everything apart, but we usually say this about many different things. I can in complete honestly say, I have ALWAYS, in case I didn’t make my point, I have ALWAYS!!!! HATED!!! RUNNING!!! I grew up a swimmer, knocking out a mile was nothing in the pool, but running a block for anything other than A. someone is chasing me; B. I must get home or I get in trouble; or C. Ok there is no C; running never happened. I did run (well walk) cross country in Jr High because all of my siblings did it, looking back, not my smartest decision. So, why do any of you care about this, well, because I am hoping some you reading this have been in my shoes, are in my shoes, and are currently putting on or thinking of putting on running shoes.
So many of our patients walk in to seminar, listen attentively, shaking their heads yes, yet in the back of their mind are SCREAMING NOOO!!!!! I will NEVER exercise (think 3 year old tantrum here.) We discuss increase in activity at many visits, give handouts, words of compliance come out of the mouth, yet the 3 year old is still pouting and shaking his/her head and stomping the feet NO! Soon, with a little prying, they start walking for 15-30 minutes and think, that’s not too bad. Eventually the time increases to 45 minutes. Soon they notice in the time it took to do 1 ½ miles, they are now completing 2, and are still alive. This is where I am now, I even start jogging, because my body wants to, I admit my head still wants to scream, ok it does scream, but I jog occasionally. Now remember, the majority of people don’t start out with the idea they want to run a marathon, or even a 5K, they think, I need to move, I know how to walk and it’s free, I am going to walk. So walking begins, and you feel great doing it, so you continue and then BAM!! it hits you, you enjoy it, or at least how you feel after it.
Here is a story about Tabatha, she had and Roux-en-Y Gastric By-Pass on 05/18/2014, she has currently lost over 100 lbs!!! But we are not going to talk about weight loss here (although she is doing awesome!) We are going to talk about her activity. Here are two pictures of her, the first with her helping with a water station during the Covenant Marathon, and I am putting her caption on it, it says so much more about it than I ever can.
“Six years ago we volunteered at the covenant health knoxville marathon with knox life church water stop #1. If you would have told me that six years from the first picture I would be “one of those runners” I would have laughed!!!!”
– Tabatha Rainwater
So, I asked Tabatha to answer a few questions out for me, so I could summarize and do the whole reporter thing. However, I realized when reading her answers (and tears welling up in my eyes,) her answers were so much better than I could summarize!
Q: how far after surgery you started running/walking?
A: About three months after surgery I started chasing my son around at the park, nothing planned or scheduled. It was very slow to start.
Q: How did you decide to do a 5k?
A: I had been attempting “regular exercise” per Greg’s recommendation. I had been trying to get outside and walk a mile or so two-three times a week. Again, nothing structured, no gym membership. Six months after weight loss surgery, I saw an ad on Facebook to Knoxville Track Club’s Leftover’s 5k. Pay $5 and get all the leftover shirts you’d like. (I NEEDED shirts that fit.) Originally, I planned to just go get shirts, and not do the 5k. But, then, there were other people there, who I did not know, encouraging me to walk the 5k with them. So, I did, no previous training. It took us, the woman I just met and me, 58 minutes to walk the 5k. We were the last to finish, and people were cheering for us.
Q: Why did you increase to running?
A: I really enjoyed the feeling of accomplishment that came with finishing my 5k. The support and comradery that was present at the
Leftovers 5k was endearing. My husband said I finally decided to let others in. With Greg’s comment in the back of my mind, “Set a goal, and surprise yourself by meeting it,” I had been thinking about doing something BIG that I never felt able to accomplish before. I had tried running before gastric bypass, and it was always HARD. Before Surgery, my body would hurt for days after trying to run a mile, I was exhausted. But, with less weight and proper nutrition, I didn’t hurt at all after the 5k. It was time to try running.
Q: How did you set your goal?
A: I started doing a couch to 5k app that helped me run for short periods. I started talking to people who I knew that were “runners” about setting a goal, and several people suggested the Covenant Health Knoxville Half Marathon. It felt unattainable at first. I couldn’t very well run a whole mile, let alone 13.1 miles. But, then, I thought about the pictures in Greg’s office of people who ran half marathons and other who did triathlons, and thought, “But what if I can?” And that was it. I was determined to do it.
Q: Didn’t you hate running… just a few months ago?
A: Yes. Yes I did. It was not fun. My entire life, running was just a reminder that I wasn’t good enough. I was never fast enough, I was always last to finish, I was the first to be out of breath, I was the first to walk, etc. Why would I want to put myself through that agony just to be out of breath, sweaty, and the “loser” of the group? With the weight loss and new outlook on life, all I could think about running was, “What if I can?”
Q: Did you use NewLife to reach your goal?
A: Yes. Of course. New Life was the catalyst that helped me break out of the weight shell I had been hiding in my entire life. But, more than that, they helped with the specifics of making my unreachable goal reachable. I set a nutrition plan with Cierra, and a flexibile running plan with Greg. I called Cierra with questions about nutrition during the “long run”. I called Greg with questions about how to stay warm while running in the winter. Not only did the support staff make it a reachable goal, they were there for the details, the nitty gritty.
Q: So, you really weren’t a runner before having Weight Loss Surgery?
A: NO. I tried to run a 5k a few years ago, that was the longest stint of running I ever had. I was NEVER athletic before Weight Loss Surgery.
Q: How did it feel to reach your unreachable goal?
A: I am so proud of myself! I was in tears of joy on the 50 yard line of neyland stadium as I finished the half marathon. Words can’t describe the positive feelings I have right now, hopefully you can see it in my smile. My running motto describes it all, “I run because I can!” Thanks New Life Support Staff, I really do have a new life, and I love it.
So, the moral of the story is not, go run, you will love it, I promise that is not what I am getting at. The moral is, try something new, even if you hated it before. This includes running, bicycling, playing sports, even trying new (healthy) foods. You are working on healthy living, get out there and try something you never thought you could do before. You may not like it, however you may find that you love it. Then the new mantra will be “The thing I love most is…”
Sarah Grimes, RN, CBN