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Make it a Marathon

5K firecracker

How should we think about weight loss? Plain and simple, we need to make it a marathon. I continue to write posts on running and how it compares to our lives; so it’s only time to apply it to the marathon. Weight loss is exactly like running a marathon – participants have to take it one mile at a time in order to get to the finish. I believe that if we apply this comparison to our lives it really keeps things in perspective and allows us to move forward. Don’t believe me?

Read more to see how the 26.2 mile distance parallels all weight loss goals.

The Marathon Distance:

The marathon is a brutal distance, exactly 26.2 miles to cross the finish line. It is a distance that truly tests the human body because of how much fuel we can store in our tanks. Nearly a million people each year put their bodies to the test to accomplish such a goal. No matter how many you’ve down, it’s never easy to conquer the course.

Weight Loss Application:

Weight loss is not an overnight fix. It takes time and is just as big a test as anything else we face in our lives. It is a challenge, mentally and physically, to wake up and stick to an exercise program and plan our nutrition. Truthfully, between 40% of women and 30% of men are tackling weight loss at any point in the year. It’s never easy to hit a goal weight or to maintain. 

Training for the Marathon:

You can’t just hop out of bed one morning and say I am headed to hit a marathon; you have to train. Training takes at minimum of 18 full weeks establishing a routine, following a schedule, and journaling progress. The fact is training never stops – it’s important to keep your body fit – even if there isn’t an upcoming race.  

Weight Loss Application:

Shooting to lose weight requires not only training our bodies, but training our minds. It requires educating ourselves on what standards to stay accountable to each week. Cardiovascular exercise 5 days a week  60 minutes, 2 to 3 sessions of strength training, creating a meal plan, and of course journaling food and exercise. These are responsibilities we must commit to each day; to be ready for our next fun activity and number one to maintain our quality of life.

On the Marathon Course:

 If you’ve ever participated in a road race there’s always hills and tough parts to the course. Additionally, every few miles water stations are set with spectators rooting on the runners.

Weight-Loss Application:

New day, new focus when it comes to weight-loss. We are going to hit bumps in the road, not have the best of days with nutrition or we’ll miss a planned workout. The key is rising above these obstacles and removing the all or nothing mentality – getting right back at it the next day. Throughout a lifestyle transition, but we have to regroup when these bumps happen. A support system along the way is essential. Surrounding ourselves with individuals who respect our goals and provide encouragement makes it tough to fail.

To Finish the Marathon:

Toeing the line of a marathon, I always say to myself why did I sign up for this? Did I really commit to running 26.2 miles!? When a runner comes to mile 20 in the marathon the race truly starts. The lactic acid build-up in your calves and hamstrings start to create fatigue and it becomes increasingly difficult to hold a pace. Breaking through the so called “Wall” and crossing the line truly changes your life forever. 

Weight-Loss Application:

We have to focus on small goals, big picture. To pursue weight-loss we must take it one pound at a time, one belt loop and each waist size. Stepping up and improving our lifestyles can be daunting making it essential to break up the journey. When you start to see changes, you have to break through the mental wall and keep going because the race isn’t over. If we hit a plateau it’s important to keep moving, mix up the exercise routine or examine the food journal. The fact is hitting your ultimate wellness vision will change your life forever.

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