Road to Recovery- Return to “racing”, weight gain & muscle building

Day 79 post injury diagnosis.

When you get told you can’t run after running almost every day for 8 years, the first thing that flashes across your mind is “I’m going to get fat”. Before running I was quite a chubby person. I was insecure and self conscious and there is no way I wanted to go back to that.

I got a DEXA scan on the 1st of February, 7 days post injury. I wasn’t at all happy with the results. I had less muscle than I expected and a lot more fat. I started to question everything that I had been doing in my training, the increase in running, the reduction in weight training, the ‘go slow to go fast’ method I had incorporated. It hadn’t just made me fatter, but it had made me unhealthier and that I wasn’t willing to accept. But I couldn’t ignore the other obvious change I had made, I went vegan.

Like everyone who goes vegan, you think, I can’t get fat on a vegan diet, it’s all plants. Yep, it is. It’s plant based biscuits, breads, sugar, pizza and ice cream. Because hey it’s plant based, it’s “healthy”. I watched a YouTube video recently by High Carb Hannah who said that when she first went vegan she also gained weight because of the “magic plant calories”. Could I be a victim of magic plant calories as well?

When I got back from my trip to NZ, I got another scan. I was heavier, fatter and had just a little bit more muscle mass.

I was told to come back in a minimum of 8 weeks. So I’ve booked in for the 4th of May, 10 and half weeks later.

That’s in just under three weeks time. I’m a little scared. Since that February 20 scan, I spent a few weeks just swimming and doing upper body weights, a week or so on the stationary bike and now I’m back to running 5 k every second day.

But here’s the thing, I feel absolutely massive. I’m sure I have put on muscle but I certainly have not lost any fat. In fact, I think I might have put even more on. I’m getting to the very upper range of my wardrobe.

It’s pretty clear that what I have been doing isn’t working. I think I’m just way too loose with my food. Pretty much eating whatever I want whenever I want and I don’t mean salad or fruit, I mean Hungry Jacks Onion rings and Ben and Jerry’s ice cream. I’ve also fallen into the trap a few times of “starting again” and since I was starting again the next day I needed to make the most of the hours I had before I wasn’t allowed to eat crap. So I would eat as much crap as I could, eat good for a few days and then the cycle would continue all over again.

So here I am, just a few weeks out from my return scan and I need to drop some serious fat.

The plan in Intermittant fasting, steady state fasted cardio in the mornings, weights and HIIT in the afternoon and no bloody junk food.

I’ve also found myself a target race. I didn’t really want to go back to road running as it just isn’t really my thing anymore but the Gold Coast marathon has a special place in my heart being the first marathon I ever ran and also the marathon I did for my wedding last year (Yep we went up for the marathon and eloped the day before!). So this year I’m heading up for the half marathon. I’ve never run the half marathon on the Gold Coast before so I’m excited to go up and have a crack.

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