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New Year, New Me?

January 12, 2014 Leave a comment

Happy (belated) New Year’s. I wish you all a happy and healthy New Year.

So why did I title my blog entry as “New Year, New Me”? Well…for starters I entered the new year without the use of crutches. My medical history has prevented me from starting the new year healthy. Two hip surgeries later, I feel great.

And as I enter the new year pain free, 2014 will be a defining year for yours truly. In 2010, I was at my healthiest and strongest. Upon feeling healthy and vowing to never look back at my old 250+ pound self, I decided I wanted to run the NYC Marathon in 2012.

Fast forward to 2011, I felt my body breaking down. Femoroacetabular Impingement (FAI) was the cause to my malaise. My hips hurt. My confidence shattered. And my desire to run in the NYC Marathon in 2012 was in question.

Enter Dr. Bryan T. Kelly in the spring of 2011. His experience in arthroscopic hip surgery has been mentioned in this blog countless times over. But once again I must state, we approached this head on. One option given to me was to alter my activities. Running and working out has become a constant fixture in my life. While I stopped working out for six months at the discretion of Dr. Kelly, my confidence was not completely deflated. And my dream of running in the marathon was not dead. The dream was and to this very day remains ALIVE.

Two hip surgeries later I have never felt better. My hips no longer ache. The running path is clear. I am now running without worries or fear. Today I prepare for my toughest and most probably task, the NYC Marathon.

Training has not been kind to me. But I recently realized I was the one to blame. For instance my cardio lacked intensity. I became too complacent. The monotony of using the elliptical machine five days a week mentally drained me. On the first day of the month, I decided to mix my cardio. I re-included the use of the spin bike, the treadmill/running path, stair master, etc. It truly feels like 2010.

My goal between now and the NYC Marathon (November 2) is to mentally and physically prepare myself for the grueling 26.2 miles of fun. Yup fun.

The first item on my checklist is to lose the weight I gained from the two surgeries. In 2010, I weighed 150 pounds. Three years and 15 pounds later, I do not want to weight 150 pounds, but I sure as hell do not want to weigh 165 pounds. In the coming weeks, I plan on finding a personal trainer. I also plan on going for more runs. But of course that last item is contingent on the weather. I do not mind running in the cold, but when a “polar vortex” hits the area, my limbs mean more than a run in the park.

Is this really a “New Year, New Me”? The answer is simply “no”. For one I am not keen on resolutions. Secondly, I met my goals in 2009. And now that I am healthy, “it’s go time”.

Stay tuned. I will go through a lot of peeks and valleys.

 

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NYC’s Waistline Continues To Grow

March 13, 2011 Leave a comment

I often get asked or even questioned as to why I lost weight. Without sounding too obnoxious my response will stand and remain for health reasons. Did vanity have anything to do with it? Not really. I have always felt comfortable with who I was when I weighed 250 pounds. And now that I am living healthy and training for a marathon I am not looking back.

However earlier this week I noticed a front page headline in Metro New York titled On Fat Tuesday, NYC Fatter Than Ever. The article provided shocking facts. According to the city Department of Health, New York City’s rate of obesity and diabetes is growing at a bigger rate than any other area in the United States. Even more alarming almost half of NYC elementary school students are overweight. Despite a massive “anti sugar” ad campaign, sponsored by the city and the government, city residents continued to pack on the pounds and visit fast food restaurants.

This article pains me. If adults want to contribute to their own weight gain or lack of health then that’s on them. However, I feel for the children. To learn half of elementary school students in NYC are overweight is heart breaking. As one who endured being overweight from an early age, I wish I knew then what I know now.

In recent years I have made it known how content I am with a salad over a burger any day; or how I am content with my marathon training over a video game. I do hope they find a way to a healthy life. Now I am not suggesting children should prepare for a marathon. Instead I do hope the city develops programs to promote physical fitness.

Being fit and healthy can only increase the longevity of people. As a first time runner I feel blessed to have the opportunity to train and run the NYC Marathon. Losing 100 pounds in a one year span has been a humbling accomplishment. I feel if my message along with the message of others who endured similar transitions can inspire our overweight society then our purpose has been accomplished.

What are your thoughts about our growing number of obesity, especially in children?

Progress

March 6, 2011 1 comment

Slow and steady wins the race. Or so says a buddy of mine. Three days after revealing my first running event,  this first time runner put himself in a running mindset. This morning I ran on the treadmill.

If I intend to participate in the 2012 NYC Marathon I will need to focus. For the second week I showed signs of improvement. Adding an additional ten minutes (including a five minute cool down) to my workout on the treadmill I surpassed my pace. Running at the same speed (6.2-6.4)  as last week I ran for a total of 8.31 miles.

I CONTINUE TO IMPROVE

Yes I added an additional ten minutes but the added time  is meant to build stamina. The more time I increase the better I will improve on distance. And also keep in mind, while I did add to the distance during the final five minutes, I walked. To prevent stiffness or injuries it is wise and common to drop the heart rate after a long and vigorous workout. In this case after running for 105 minutes, the final five was exactly what the doctor ordered.

And if you are wondering I am sore. For two weeks now I have shown signs of improvement. However, to avoid injury, I prefer not adding additional time. Of course I will not add any additional time for the interim.

In the coming days I will actually implement cross-training. Cross-training is a way for a runner to avoid injury and keep active while in between a run. Instead of running one could use the elliptical, spin bike, stair master, and even swimming. Typically, when I am not running I am on the stair master. However, lately, I have felt uninspired and exhausted.

While I do enjoy the stair master, I may have hit a wall. Now I decided to change it up. In the coming days I will explain cross-training in detail.

Overall I am feeling great. I cannot wait for the next run. My training can only get better and challenging.

My First Race Revealed

March 3, 2011 3 comments

Where Am I Running?

Since creating “runjorgerun”, my thoughts have been set on running the 2012 NYC Marathon. However, while I looked to the future, I never thought about the present. Sure I am in training mode. However, the winter days toppled by less than favorable weather has forced me to train in the warm confines of the treadmill. It’s not ideal but as the saying goes, “it’s better than nothing”!

As we enter a new month, I will see sunnier days. Spring means an eternal outlook on life and the renaissance of a new me. Sure I lost weight. And sure I am in the best shape of my life. But now I have to take my training to the next level. To get in the best shape come November 2012, I need to plan for the present. At the moment I am making progress. But I refuse to be complacent. As someone close to me said, “do not worry about the others, go out there and have fun.” And that is my intention. The training will be arduous and at times grueling, but through hell or high water I will persevere this challenge like no other.

Earlier this week, by fate, I happened to have logged on to my twitter page and in my timeline was a tweet from the New York Road Runners (NYRR) that promoted their upcoming American Heart Association 3 mile Wall Street Run on May 17th. On their website, the NYRR’s offered other races prior to this one in May, but some were too soon for me to even consider, I decided with enough preparation and training between now and May 17th, I will tackle the 3 mile challenge.

Running has been a huge motivation for me in recent months. And what makes the event far more special is the added benefit I am running in an event and for an organization I deeply care about. Being healthy and active has changed my perspective on life. And what better way to promote the American Heart Association than to participate in a 3 mile race. Participating in this race is the right thing to do and I could not be any happier.

As a first time runner I know my weaknesses can only be turned into a strength. It’s only a matter of time until I break out and with my best pair of running shoes, the world will see the transition I made from 250 pound Jorge, to agile and healthy Jorge.

For more information on the 3 mile run please click here.

Run Jorge Run!