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 Weight Gain After Marathon
OldManRunner
Runworks 2005 5M Racer
Rochester, NY
Joined: 28 Nov 2004
Posts: 262

Weight Gain After Marathon Posted: Tue Dec 14, 2004 8:29 am 

Does anyone else have a hard time keeping weight off in the downtime following a long race? I seem to have this threshold point in my metabolism where if I get in 40 or more miles a week I can keep the weight off and maintain in the lower 140's, but if I'm only running say 25 or 30 miles a week then my weight just creeps back up. I"m pushing 150 now not even 2 months after my last marathon, and have only been running 25 to 30 mile weeks. How does the average recreational runner manage to lose any weight? Yes, yes, I know, I could eat less...but I really like to eat!

Rickshaw
Runworks 2005 5M Racer
San Francisco, CA
Joined: 26 Nov 2004
Posts: 1157

Re: Weight Gain After Marathon Posted: Tue Dec 14, 2004 10:47 am 

Do you know your body mass index? I think the formula is weight / height^2, where weight is in kg and height is in meters. For men, I think average values are around 23-25. You can find BMI calculators online.

The reason I ask is that you may actually be underweight, and your body is just returning to a more normal weight range after the race. But if you're not happy with the weight, then you've got to either take in fewer calories or burn more calories. Assuming you're happy with your current mileage level, then you need to find some ways to cut calories. Maybe drink more water instead of juices or soda, or eat many small meals throughout the day instead of a few big ones, which is supposed to help reduce overall calorie intake.

One thing I've done that helps is to record my weight nearly every day, and watch how it changes over time. I've been in the same 6-pound range for the entire year, but have observed some interesting trends. For example, I lost more weight when I was putting in a lot of hours at work. My BMI is also 19.5, so I could probably stand to gain some weight. At least my wife thinks so!


sfird
Runworks 2005 5M Racer
Long Island, NY
Joined: 10 Dec 2004
Posts: 80

Re: Weight Gain After Marathon Posted: Tue Dec 14, 2004 1:17 pm 

I fluctuate up to 18 pounds (152 - 170) from my spring/summer weight to my winter weight. I find that I run less but eat the same. Up until this year, once I start running more the weight comes off. This year half the weight came off easily but I had to really watch what I ate to get back down to 152. Now that the marathon season is over (I ran MCM in October) I am waiting for the weight gain. So far so good but I can almost hear the weight coming. Every year I say that this will be the first year I keep my weight under 155 all winter so maybe this will be the year. I have to admit that I have been running a little more than usual for the winter and eating less. Check back in March and I'll let you know how I did.

OldManRunner
Runworks 2005 5M Racer
Rochester, NY
Joined: 28 Nov 2004
Posts: 262

Re: Weight Gain After Marathon Posted: Wed Dec 15, 2004 7:50 am 

I fall within the "normal" BMI range at both the high-end and low-end of my weight range (142ish to 155ish), but I have some pants that are too big when I'm at the low end, and some that are too small when I'm at the high end. It would be nice to just stay at around 142 - 145, because then I wouldn't have to worry about which pants I can wear! ;-) My problem is that, rather than eating a few big meals a day, I eat many big meals a day. Guess I just need to run more since I don't want to eat less, but I have to start my next training cycle in late January anyway, and want to have my normal base mileage back up towards 45 - 50 miles a week by then anyway. I'm just suffering from the late fall / winter "I just don't feel like running today" blahs that I get most every year.

onyourleft


Joined: 08 Dec 2004
Posts: 10

Re: Weight Gain After Marathon Posted: Wed Dec 15, 2004 2:36 pm 

yep. i do the exact same thing except my range is 180 to 195. i thought this was going to be the year that would be different. nope! on the plus side it's pretty fun working it off. on the minus side the extra lbs turn my normal easy run route into a forced strength building workout. but what the heck. i like eating and love holiday parties. maybe instead of going from "big swing" to "no swing" the goal should be to have less fluctuation. next year i'll shoot for a max of 10 lbs. ok. i'm done rambling.

sfird
Runworks 2005 5M Racer
Long Island, NY
Joined: 10 Dec 2004
Posts: 80

Re: Weight Gain After Marathon Posted: Thu Dec 16, 2004 10:43 am 

Well to my surprise, it's six weeks since my marathon and I was 151 when I weighed myself this morning. Maybe this is the year. I too like eating but I've learned that I don't have to love everything I eat. For instance, if I eat a sensible breakfast, lunch and dinner, a scoop of ice cream is ok. Of course, it used to be 2 scoops with hot fudge but I realize those days are over. I'm going to St. Maarten in January which should present an array of dietary problems such as richer food, more alcohol, bread on the table and deserts. I can see gaining a pound a day. I'll have to run twice a day just to stay even.

swrittenb


Joined: 06 Dec 2004
Posts: 27

Re: Weight Gain After Marathon Posted: Sun Dec 19, 2004 11:30 pm 

so fat. ;)

swrittenb


Joined: 06 Dec 2004
Posts: 27

Re: Weight Gain After Marathon Posted: Sun Dec 19, 2004 11:32 pm 

I just finished my first marathon, and if anything I've kept the weight off.. I guess it's only been two weeks, but I've managed to stay about even so far with only a little bit of running in recovery mode.

OldManRunner
Runworks 2005 5M Racer
Rochester, NY
Joined: 28 Nov 2004
Posts: 262

Re: Weight Gain After Marathon Posted: Mon Dec 20, 2004 5:09 am 

I always start running into trouble about 6 to 8 weeks after the race, when my metabolism starts to slow down due to a reduced training load. I hit 151 on Friday, exactly two months after my last marathon...up about 8 pounds from my weight on the day of the race. Hmm, if I keep this up in a year from now I'll weigh 200.

Gary Lambert

Pensacola
Joined: 24 Dec 2004
Posts: 3

Re: Weight Gain After Marathon Posted: Sun Dec 26, 2004 9:00 am 

I guess most runners gain weight during the winter and after marathons. When I taper for a race and cut calories, my appetite increases after the race. Maybe cutting calories before a race is not the best way to keep your weight steady.

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