There is no real purpose behind running anymore. We now live in safe, comfortable cities. Unlike our hunter-gatherer predecessors, we no longer have to run after our food across the African savannah. Neither do we have to run away from being turned into food by something bigger! So, why should we big men bother with running at all?
Let me throw some stats at you. There are 7,700 calories in a kilogram of fat. Running 1 kilometre burns approximately 100 calories. If you want to lose a kilogram of fat then you should run 77 kilometres. Running five days a week for 5 kilometres at a time means you will start to see results after only three weeks!
This is an easily achievable feat in a relatively short amount of time for big men who run.
Regular running doesn’t just equal weight loss. It is also a great character-builder. When you want to give up, that is the exact moment when you have to dig deep and keep going. Put one foot in front of the other. Repeat. If you do this enough times you will become an unstoppable juggernaut both physically and mentally!
As David Goggins might say, to grow as a person in life we do things that suck.
Read on to discover how we big blokes can master the art of running to better ourselves.
Big Guys Running Tip #1: Don’t run, walk!
Don't let anything stop you: get up and get going first thing in the morning
Sounds counter-intuitive, but if you want to end up being a runner you need to start by walking. Building a regular time for walking into your daily routine is going to set you up for success. If possible, get up early. As soon as you wake up in the morning, get your shoes on and get going. Don’t waste any time in piss-farting around or the doubts and excuses will start to creep in.
Before too long you will find it easy to start your day off by hitting the road. You won’t need to motivate yourself anymore as it will be a part of your daily routine. Next, it is time to turn this new found exercise habit into a regular running schedule.
Big Guys Running Tip #2: Use the Run-Walk method
Get up early and get after it!
Like anything, it’s important to not go too hard too soon or you’ll end up shooting your wad. The point is to become a regular runner. This is why the Run-Walk method is a great way for us big guys to get better at running regularly.
First conceived by Olympic long distance runner Jeff Galloway, the Run-Walk method has its adherents take programmed walk breaks, not simply when they’ve run out of puff, but more so to help ensure the completion of progressively longer distances.
Most experts suggest that beginners should start running 3 to 4 four times a week and that each run should be roughly 30 minutes in duration (averaging 3 to 5 kilometres).
Obviously, if this is too much for you to begin with scale it down.
As a new runner you should aim to complete regular 3k distances for the first few weeks of your new found running regime. The longer distances will come in time once you attune your mind and body. As big men, the important thing is to get started by locking down regular 30 minute Run-Walks.
The Run-Walk method stipulates that at first one should run for 30 seconds before walking for 1 – 2 minutes.
Sounds easy, right?
Don’t get ahead of yourself just yet! The next level is running for 5 minutes before walking for only 1 minute until the target destination has been reached.
Not only for big men who run, this method has actually been shown to improve race times for marathon runners as it gives the body much needed recovery time during longer distances.
Big Guys Running Tip #3: Keep moving forward
Tipping the scales at 180kg , Charles Bungert is officially the biggest man to have completed a marathon
If you are new to running, maybe it isn’t the best idea to start training for any ultra-marathons just yet.
Instead, find your own groove. Buy some good running shoes and get clothing that is comfortable to run in.
The important point is to get off the couch and keep going. Even if you have to use the Cliff Young shuffle. Don’t stop (unless it’s for one of your programmed walk breaks!). By doing so you are running laps around everyone who is still on the couch!
That’s it. Simple. Running doesn’t need to be over-complicated. Just be like Forrest! It's simplicity is precisely the reason why we run – to escape the complexities of life at home or at the workplace. Maybe before the Lockdown you were planning on hitting up the gym in an effort to improve your health and fitness and burn off some steam. Why not let running be your new go to in terms of exercise and stress release?
So, now it's time to go find a new trail or route to explore.
Be a big man who runs.