I have been working with plus size women for more than a decade.
When I set up my blog in 2010 I had no idea that it would reach millions of women all over the world.
I also didn’t realise that my views and opinions about my body would evolve so much…
When I started the blog I was still very much in diet mentality…counting calories, dabbling in well known diet plans. I used running to manage my weight…and to some extent it worked.
When I ran my first marathon in 2012 I was at my smallest and lightest (I also happened to be pregnant and didn’t know it)
I was a small size 16…and with my 5’11 frame, for me that was rather slim.
After becoming a mum, and putting around 4 stone of weight on I lost a lot of my confidence and I jumped back into the diet plan way of life.
I did a lot of walking, and eventually I got back to running and trained for my 2nd marathon, which helped me to come back down to around a size 18 again.
I have yoyo’ed between a size 16 and a size 20 for the past 9 years.
My size isn’t as important to me as some might think…even if I have built a global brand around being a “big girl” lol
The Too Fat to Run? Movement has always been a weight neutral movement…what do I mean by that?
It is not Pro Weight loss, but it is also not Anti Weight loss.
The blog, my community and my online fitness programmes attract all kinds of women, at all body sizes, ages, backgrounds and fitness levels.
Our focus is always on health and happiness, and learning to love and appreciate your body no matter what size it is currently at.
Here is where it gets tricky though.
Women often ask me about whether they should try to lose weight when attempting BIG races, like half marathons and marathons.
Here is my take on it.
You can 100% train for and run long distance races at a larger size…I mean I have, and so have many many other women.
Is it easier to be a bit smaller??? In my personal opinion, I’d say YES.
The older and the larger I have got, the harder the marathon and the slower I have become.
When I signed up to do my latest BIG challenge, the Sierra Leone Marathon I was not in good physical condition, and so I knew some intentional weight loss would help me have a more enjoyable experience in West Africa.
I lost about a stone in weight in preparation, and this played a massive part (I believe) in me being able to cope with the heat, and not have issues with my knees or hips during or after the event.
But it is a personal choice.