Among my friends, there has been a bit of an epidemic of people taking up running over the past couple of years. It makes sense: as fitness activities go there are no barriers to entry (provided that you already own a pair of trainers); and apps like Zombies, Run! and the like appeal to our gamer sensitivities. I’ve seen a few of them share The Oatmeal’s cartoon about his own love of distance running, and battle against what he calls The Blerch. It’s one that strikes a chord, as I too have a fat little cherub that follows me wherever I go. In fact, I have two – and they are permanently affixed to my chest.
Allow me to introduce: my Blerch Boobs!
I’m not making any excuses – I’m overweight all over at the moment, and the mere presence of my gimungus boobs is not the only thing that has stopped me from exercising. You may remember me excusing myself from not being able to get to the gym at the start of the year, as I vowed to put my mental health first. Well, my mental health isn’t getting any better – more about that later in the week – and it’s time to get moving.
As much as I really enjoyed my first 5k last year, I’m coming at this as a complete running novice. Inspired by Alex’s recent “Confessions of a Reluctant Runner” post, I downloaded the free NHS Couch to 5k app and was waiting for a clear, rain-free evening to get started – something which, if you are similarly based in Glasgow, you’ll know have been in short supply at the moment.
Which is why the chance to be an official Too Fat To Run blogger seemed like the perfect opportunity.
Originally a blog set up by Julie Creffield to track her progress when training for her first marathon, Too Fat to Run? is now her full-time, global campaign to get more plus-sized women running. Julie’s mission is to prove that you can enjoy the health benefits of running whatever your size, and her long-term goal is to get one million overweight women running. Her website acts as resource, inspiration and virtual running club through The Clubhouse; and she also offers real-world training sessions, motivational speaking and a range of bold, bright t-shirts and hoodies.
Starting on 1 September, I’m going to be spending six months as a member of The Clubhouse – picking up hints, tips and encouragement – and blogging my fitness journey, both here and on The Fat Girls’ Guide to Running. It’s a supportive environment, but one which will hold me accountable – and I cannot wait to get started.
Not least because I cannot WAIT to start running around Dalmarnock with “TOO FAT TO RUN” emblazoned across my chebs.
Although I’d like to lose a little weight, my motivation for embarking on this project is to improve my strength and fitness, and to take advantage of the mental health benefits I’ve always been assured that regular exercise brings but have always been too tired to find out. I want to sleep better, feel better and concentrate better. I’m excited!
Find out more about The Fat Girls’ Guide to Running and the Too Fat To Run? campaign at Julie’s website.