Share on Tumblr

Future Runners, Get Off Your Ass!
10 Ways To  Go From Fat to Fit

By Mamie Nash

Yep, Fall is finally here! Family gatherings in the brisk autumn air, football on the TV, leaves bright and beautiful scattered all around,  and oh, that outdoor barbecue clearly calling your name! As Andy Williams sang so many years ago, it is indeed, “a wonderful time of the year”.

The only problem? Most people tend to allow a few extra pounds to somehow slip under their belts during this season! Yes, it’s a fact! Weight gain really takes off in the fall, and continues on its path of destruction until the holidays finally come to an end. Before you know it, there you’ll be, sitting there, crying in your soup as you tug at your threadbare sweatpants, the only piece of clothing you own that fits! Tell me, ladies, is it really worth it? Do we even want to start down this road?

If your answer is no, and I genuinely hope it is, then please read the rest of this article for tips on breaking into one of the most rewarding hobbies in existence - running!

Yes, I’ll be the first to admit that running sucks. At least while you’re doing it. It hurts. It’s exhausting. It’s boring! At least at first. The great thing is that the more you do it, the more you enjoy it! Pretty soon you go from dreading the run to looking forward to it, and maybe even...dare we say it?...loving it!

Running on the city streets with Fish Eye Lens

So here you are, future runners! Tips, tricks, and inspiration for your personal journey from fat to fit. This particular article is tailored for those of you who are getting into running for the first time. But if you’re an ex-runner looking for some inspiration to get back in the swing of things, then hey, this is for you, too!

10 Perfectly Good Reasons to Get Off Your Ass

  1. You’re overweight.
  2. You get winded while walking your dog.
  3. You have children who think your lack of exercise and general slovenliness is an acceptable lifestyle, and are following your example.
  4. Your legs look like those on a sparrow, and you really want to fix that.
  5. You just had a baby and want to lose the weight you gained during pregnancy.
  6. You have a vacation coming up, and you’d rather people not have to see your bod on the beach (you know, as is).
  7. You’re a freshman, or a newlywed, or whatever, who has gained 10 or more pounds in a year.
  8. You want to make new friends.
  9. You have that special outfit that you reaaaally want to wear, but it’s two sizes too small. (Or four... or six! Get off that ass, girlfriend!)
  10. You’re looking for an inexpensive, rewarding hobby for yourself, or to share with someone special.

First,  Inspiring Words of Wisdom!!

  • "Workouts are like brushing my teeth; I don't think about it, I just do it. The decision has already been made."  - Patti Sue Plumer, U.S. Olympian

  • “Somewhere in the world someone is training when you are not. When you race him, he will win.” - Tom Fleming’s Boston Marathon training sign on his wall

  • “The will to win means nothing if you haven’t the will to prepare.” - Juma Ikangaa, 1989 NYC Marathon winner

  • “Most people run a race to see who is fastest. I run a race to see who has the most guts.” - Steve Prefontaine

  • “If you can’t win, make the guy ahead of you break the record.” - Unknown

  • “Some of the world’s greatest feats were accomplished by people not smart enough to know they were impossible.” - Comic & Author Doug Larson

  • “It’s very hard in the beginning to understand that the whole idea is not to beat the other runners. Eventually you learn that the competition is against the little voice inside you that wants you to quit.” - Dr. George Sheehan, author of "Running & Being: The Total Experience”

  • "If what you did yesterday still looks big to you, you haven't done much today." - Wid Matthews, Outfielder & General Manager, Chicago Cubs

  • "You only live once, but if you work it right, once is enough." - The Brown Bomber, boxer Joe Louis

  • "You can't go back and make a brand new start, but you can start now and make a brand-new end." - Jack Garmise

  • "The impossible is often the untried." - Jim Goodwin

10 Tips to (Successfully) Get Off Your Ass!

1. Get Off Your Ass!
Don’t sit and think about it, and don’t call friends or discuss it with them first. Those tasks can be done later. Get up, right now, throw on some tennis or running shoes, and go for a jog. Nothing fast, nothing far, just a ten minute jog around the neighborhood. Then come back and finish reading.

2. Start Slow
Don’t try to go out there and Forrest Gump it, you’ll just hurt yourself. And then you’ll wake up tomorrow, too sore to move, and decide that you really cannot run for a few days, and before you know it, you’ll be at retirement age or worse, with that one solitary day of running for bragging rights. It’s not rocket science, guys. Don’t overdo it!

3. Warm it Up, Wilma!
Try a few stretches to warm up. You’ll probably suck at stretching at first, but that’s no biggie. If you’re embarrassed, just do it inside so no one will see you! Trust me, no one really cares if you can barely reach down to your kneecaps when you start out, and before you know it you’ll be touching your toes! Remember though, don’t push yourself too hard, too fast. Make sure you’re comfortable (don’t forget to stretch post run), and take your time. Need some stretches? Follow the link!

4. Phone-A-Friend
I know, I know. You don’t want to call the one person you know who’s both fit, and crazy about fitness, because the thought of trying to keep up with him or her is embarrassing, right? Being human, we naturally want to be the best at everything we do, so taking on a challenge like this within view of an expert is daunting. So don’t! Instead, call up a friend, a neighbor, your mom, your sister, or just drag your boyfriend away from the TV. It doesn’t matter who it is, really; all that matters is that you have someone there who’s as excited and motivated as you are-- or should I say, as you will be, once you get a few runs under your belt.

5. Fix Those Feet
Fix Those Feet with some Nike ShoesI’m well aware that there are many choices of running shoes on the market these days, but I also  know the technicalities of shoes are just not your specialty. In addition, I know that googling “what are the best running shoes?” is not much help either. Too much detail is simply too much for you to want to tackle right now! Instead, head out to Academy Sports here in Nashville, or a local running store, and have a salesperson recommend what might be best for you, a beginner. No, you don’t have to spend an arm and a leg, but Yes, you do have to buy them. Injuring your feet, shins, or any other part of you because you don’t want to spend the money, a) will not result in you reaching your fitness goals, and b) will result in you becoming fatter than ever.  

6. “Jane Doe” is No!
It doesn’t matter who you are, where you are, or how short a distance you go. If you’re out for a run, ALWAYS, ALWAYS TAKE SOME SORT OF ID! In fact, this is so important that I’ll say it again. Always, always have an ID with you. Every year, many runners are hit by cars, pass out, have strokes, or what have you, and the hospital personnel has to list them as John/Jane Doe because they can’t figure out who the heck these people are. I know, I know, you’re careful, you’re running on empty streets, or you’re in your own neighborhood where everybody knows you. It doesn’t matter because it’s so much better to be safe than sorry, girls. Be it an ID tag on your shoe or your drivers license tucked inside your bra, have your ID with you. It’s so easy to grab on your way out the door, there’s not one good reason not to carry it with you.

7. Set a Goal or Something
I’m not talking about something huge, like the New York Marathon or a 15 mile mud run.No, I’m talking about something simple, like running for five minutes without stopping, losing three pounds, or learning to match your breathing with your stride in a way comfortable for you (I breathe in for four steps, out for two). It needs to be a goal that will take you some time to achieve, but not so far in the distant future that you’ll lose interest. After you hit that goal, reward yourself with a new song on iTunes, or how about colorful shoelaces. Then set another goal!

8. Cut the Crap
Cut the crapFood, that is! Crappy food makes you sluggish. Crappy food gives you cramps. And, you you don’t have to learn about all that nutritional mumbo jumbo, unless you want to, of course. Just toss out all that processed stuff from your fridge, shelves, and pantry, and start cooking. Use the recipes from, a site which allows you to search recipies by category and keyword. Toss the soda for water, and voila! A meal plan for true weight loss! Yes, it is in fact, that simple!

9. Click It!
Log on to and take a look in the Beginners and Women’s. Browse through some clothing articles, and read some of the stories posted there. No, this website isn’t all about complicated training plans and detailed dieting (although there are plenty of articles that do cover these things), plus there is plenty of info here for those looking to get excited about getting in shape! I personally pull up this site when I’m lacking motivation, and it works for me everytime. Before I know it, all I want to do is get off my ass and go!

10. Calendar Girl
When you go for your run, put a sticker or smiley face on the date. When you don’t, leave it blank. You’ll soon see how upsetting it is to have too many blank squares in a row, encouraging you to get back out there!

Bonus Tip. Just Do It!
Don’t worry about knowing the terminology. Don’t concern yourself with setting unachievably high goals. The trick to loving the sport of running is simply to get out there and do it! Whether you want to join a beginners running club in your town, or you prefer to spend some quality alone time with yourself or your pet, find your running comfort zone and go for it. It’s not hard, girls. It’s not complicated. It’s as simple as Getting Off Your Ass, and Out the Door!

One more thing! If you’re the type who’s interested in unusual or interesting runs, check out our feature by clicking on the following link:

Did these tips help you? Let us know, we want to hear about it! Tweet us @Dishmag or Facebook us at about your running adventure! / Issue 196 - July 2018
Turnpage Blk

Home | Links | Advertise With Us | Who We Are | Message From The Editor | Privacy & Policy

Connect with Dish Magazine:
Find us on Facebook Follow us on Twitter


Copyright (c) 2013, Smash Media Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
Reproduction in whole or in part in any form or medium without express written permission of Smash Media Group, Inc. is prohibited.
Use of Dishmag and Dish Magazine are subject to certain Terms and Conditions.
Please read the Dishmag and Dish Magazine Privacy Statement. We care about you!