A 15 stone beginner

I am a 15 stone male runner. I have been running 3 times a week for the last eight weeks. I love the running, but I still have a belly. Most of my friends tell me that I can't be a runner because I have a belly. When I say to them why don't you come out for a run with me, there full of excuses. Any hints on how to get rid of the belly. Sit ups? thanks


  • Just continue with the running the belley will come off

    I was 18stone wahen I started and am now down to 15 - I run and do TRIs @ 15stone just keep at

    It may be worth getting into the gym once or twice a week - do a bit circut training this will firm up and 'lift' the muscles

    Good luck
  • Do you drink beer?
    Then don't!

    That was a bit brutal, wasn't it?!

    I'm sure you'll get lots of replies on this. I found that the only way I could effectively lose weight (and the equivalent female belly) was to take in less calories than I was using. And then do the sit ups!

    And that meant less Stella....

    Heather :-)
  • well I don't drink. well I never really drink a lot. I guess I better start to watch what I eat. I have cut out snacks and other treats.
  • My weight sticks around the 13st5 to 14st mark depending on the time of the rowing season (I'm ligher in the spring/summer currently 13st6) i found the biggest thing for me (I was at 15st2 when i first began training) was lifestyle changes.

    I swapped most of the crap i ate for fruit and yoghurt. And i drink lots and lots of water.

    The amount i eat scares me when i write it down just that i eat things that are "better" for me now. Still have the odd muffin on the weekends so don't limit myself.

    The belly will come off, and circuits will definatly help with that. If you're doing a sit up programme don't do them every day as they won't recover properly between sessions
  • Just to say good luck Mikie, my husband weighs around 15 1/2 stone and runs a few times a week to keep fit, did his first 10K race in Jan in 51 mins. Still has a belly but then he does like the odd beer.

    However, his sister says that even when he was incredibly fit having completed a year long attachment to the US Army, and weighed 12 1/2 stone, he still had a bit of a belly. Most of his family seem to lay down fat in that area, his sister, brother and mum are the same. Is there a similar tendency in your family? If so maybe you have to contend with genetics as well as food/drink intake and will have to adapt eating and exercise to take account of it?
  • thanks for the info. My family is kinda "big boned" so that could be a problem. I will look carefully at my diet and see what i can change. :)
  • Just keep on keeping on, half the time you dont notice the small changes in your body shape and i,m sure your mates as with mine would be last ones to tell how much better you are looking!
  • lol yeah your right. thanks greg
  • mikie, i sympathise, i have a belly also after a couple of months, im sure there is a fit body underneath this lot somewhere dying to get out!
  • Sounds like the friends are more of a problem than the belly, mikie! I'd tell them they have no right to comment about your bod unless they run too.
  • I'm with Duck. My six pac is as good as anybody. You just can't see it yet. It's a bit 'covered'
  • Mikie

    Good luck with the running!

    Have you thought about swimming on the days your not running or going to the gym and doing weights. Every little bit you do will help tone your body. Keep it up!
  • I have thought about swimming. But at the moment it's just running monday,wednesday and friday and sit ups monday thru friday. my weekends are pretty full. I work both saturday and sunday.
  • Mikie

    I work full time, also Mother of two. I run twice a week, gym two lunchtimes, swim tueday nights, work as youth leader Friday night until 10 pm, go Church housegroup Wednesday evenings and sew banners for Church in between plus on Church cleaning rota, and also clean own home etc I am sure you can fit it in somewhere. Its called prioritising. Where there is the will there is the way!
  • Hi mikie, i lost over 2 stone by running but there is no two ways about it you need to diet too. I bought a little book which gave the calorie content of all food and kept a bit of a diary of ALL i ate for a few weeks. It was a bit of a pain but I was shocked how many calories sneak in. I cut back and the weight just melted away. Everytime I went to snack I thought about how much easier it would be to run if I weighed a little less and the urge to nibble went away.
  • I agree with runfruit. You never actually notice quite how much you are eating and how many calories you are consuming until you start to write it down. If you keep a food diary for a few weeks and work out the calories from either the food label or a book i think you'll be surprised. I was. i'm a lot more aware of what i eat. that said even i slip up sometimes and need to start writing it down again. I have a habit of eating even when i'm not hungry- instead you should apparently rate your hunger on a scale of 1-10. If its anything less than six then find so something else to do other than eat!!
  • keeping a record for a few weeks also teaches you pretty quickly what is OK to eat and what isn't. it isn't long before you don't need to look up everything.
  • mikie

    I've been running off and on for four years, but I'm afraid to say that I still can't shift my belly. When I first started running I lost about half a stone, but I'm now permanently around the 14 stone mark.

    But I know I'm a runner even if nobody else does.
  • Mikkie,

    I to can sympathise with you, i have been running now for 8 weeks, quite often 5 times a week and have completed a half marathon. I have stopped drinking beer and have really been watching what i eat, but i have only gone from 15st 4 to 15st 1.

    So i to would like some answers!
  • Mikkie,

    Like you I reached 15 stone a few months ago but with increased running and not having any choccy bars or crisps I seem to be happily losing 1-2 lbs per week. Forget what your "friends" say, the key question is do you feel better and of course are your trousers getting any looser ??? (If so buy a belt quick!!)

    Mark - In the good old days at uni I was 11 stone (hardly belief it myself) but I had a bigger belly than now, the reason is more muscle. Someone will tell me if I'm wrong but muscle weights 10 times more than fat so weight alone can lie !!
  • I was 15 stone 3 lbs (5 feet 10) last jan - smoking 20 fags a day.

    Now smoke free 13 stone 3 (still 5 feet 10 luckily) and about to do Dublin city marathon. Eating more now than i ever did.

    Just keep up the good work - I went through nearly 3 months of frustration - not loosing anything.

    I did cut out red meat and the only dairy i took was skimmed or low fat. That was the only real change. I didn't drink alcohol much for a couple of months either. Then all of a sudden bang - started loosing a couple of pounds per week.

    The long slow runs seemed to help alot. I have plateau'd around my current weight for a few weeks now but I'll have another drive in November leading up to Christmas.

    Don't worry you can do it, just keep plodding away.
  • runfrit,

    what was the name of the wee book that listed the comman caliore content of most foods? Sounds like that would be helpful for me!

  • Last year I had the same problem. I ran four days a week, ran three half-marathons but I didn´t lose weight,just one kilo about two pounds. However, in August I saw a thread in a Spanish running forum "WWW.elatleta.com" where a man had started a diary of his weight. Some other runners decided to tell what they weighed when they started to follow a healthy diet and report their weight every week and what they had done to lose weight weekly.

    Then, I decided to start on 1st September 2003. I weighed 89 kilos. I am 1 metre 70 cm. In six weeks I´ve lost six kilos,about a stone. I´m very glad because I don´t feel hungry.I´ve stopped eating biscuits, chocolate, milkshakes although once a week I can get a little prize by having chocolate and "churros" which I love. I´d like to lose another stone in two or three months´ time.

    I go running four days a week for about one hour, more or less what I did last year but now I have only fruit for breakfast and since then until 3 o´clock which is the time I have lunch I also have some more fruit. Then I have the main meal which here in Spain is lunch. I usually have the main dish ( rice, haricot beans, lentils, pasta ), salad, some bread and as a desert two yoghurts. In the afternoon, I can have some fruit or custard or something like that. Dinner is not big, just some bread, cheese and salad or macaroni with olive oil, salad and a dessert.
    Once a month I go running after dinner and again next day before breakfast, which I´ve heard is good to lose fat. Besides, I cycle or walk to work every day, about 3 miles return.
    Well, I advise you to start a new thread with a diary of your weight reporting your progress. It is very motivating when you see how other people are getting slimmer and when you see how you´re improving.
    I wish you all luck and I´m sure that you can reach your aims.
    Greetings from Almería, Spain.
  • you sound very sensible anlu
  • Mikie,

    Don't worry, it's not a problem. As well as all the previous good advice regarding diet, try what I do, that is, have a set program at the gym which includes rowing, air stepping, cycling as well as running and walking. Get resistance workouts into your program too, using bench press, knee extensors, weights and so on. This will tone you up really well, but always go by what your personal trainer recommends for you. He/she will know what is best for you, and you can vary your program on their advice too.

    You might like to set yourself a target, one which will stretch you but which must not be too far out of reach. I lost two and a half stone over time and I haven't been so physically and mentally fit for some years now. I feel very confident in myself as well, and this will happen for you too, I'm sure of it. Go for it, Mikey!
  • March: 16st 5' 8" couch potato

    October: sub-12st (okay, 11st 13lb!) runner. Still 5' 8" though!

    Things that have helped (and are helping) me are:

    1. Having a plan to stick to.

    I've always resisted going on a 'proper diet' but just 'eating healthy' never seemed to work for me. When I realised just how heavy I was I thought I'd try out an old copy of the Slimming World plan that was lying around the house, jsut to give me a kick-start. Still doing it and enjoying my food as much as ever.

    2. Setting goals.

    I set a target weight for myself based on a 'normal' BMI for my height (given that I have a fairly average build). And then I've weighed myself once a week since then and charted my progress.

    3. Getting support.

    I'm fortuante in that my wife also wanted to lose some weight so we've done the diet together. We've kept each other going (most of the time)...

    4. Giving in, then starting again.

    Sometimes, you've just got to have that pizza or kebab. As long as you don't give up the whole diet. Just start again the next morning as if nothing happened (and try not to do it more than once a week!)

    5. Setting (non-food!) rewards.

    My wife and I decided how much we could each spend on new clothes when we reached our targets. It's good to give yourself an incentive like that.

    Having said that, I've had to get the odd pair of trousers here and there - I started as someone who found 38" waist trousers uncomfortably tight, and now have to really tighten my belt to keep my 34" waist jeans from falling down! Only a few eeks now and I should be able to get some clothes that actually fit me...

    6. Running


    I actually started running after already losing 2 1/2 stone, but I'm sure it's helped to maintain my weight loss since then.

    In fact, I now find that my motivation has changed - I'm losing weight to run better, rather than running to lose weight faster.

    Well, that's my plan to weight loss. Certainly works for me - I've lost count of the number of people who've asked "Have you lsot weight?"!
  • Hello, everybody
    Thanks for your comment, Peppermint Hippo.
    Although there are people who consider my way of eating only fruit in the morning a bit odd, I´m glad you find I sound sensible. I think that I wouldn´t be able to follow a diet counting the calories that I have to eat but the way I´ve been eating since 1st September makes me feel great and I´m losing weight without having the feeling I´m on a diet. I learned about this way of losing weight by reading the book "Fit for Life" by Harvey and Marilyn Diamond.Although they are in some aspects too radical, for instance, when they say that humans don´t need dairy products after we are three years old, only our mother´s milk, there are some aspects which I´ve found good such as eating fruit in the morning or about thirty minutes before eating another kind of food and doing exercise to lose weight.
    They also said that most diets are a failure since when you´re on a diet you are always thinking about food, then after losing a few pounds you usually get back the weight you´ve lost.According to them, it is neccesary to change the way we eat so that we can remain in the right weight for us.
    Well, pleased to meet you in this forum, which I find very useful and good to improve my English. If you need any information on races in Spain or anything else, you can tell me and I´ll try to help you all.
    Greetings from Almería, Spain
  • I too have read a similar version to Anlu's "Fit for Life" book, here in the UK. It's called "Slim 4 Life" by Jason Vale. He says exactly the same things, that we are primarily fruit/vegetable eaters. Our physiology is similar to apes and the only think they eat is fruit/veg - raw, in their natural state. They don't eat meat and have very strong muscles, blah blah blah...

    I've taken some of his advice (not all) like only eating fruit and drinking vegetable juice until lunch, changing cow's milk to soya milk, red meat twice a week, plenty of salads, no crap like crisps, chocolate, cakes, biscuits. I do regular exercise - I have been going to the gym three times a week and now starting to run the other days. Only for an hour tops though. In 3 months I have gone from 16 stone to 14 stone. If I can continue and drop to 12 stone I shall be very happy.
  • If keeping a diary has helped some people then fine. But really, if we are honest with ourselves there is no need to keep a diary. Most of us know which foods are the no-no
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