The 5 “P”s to Success

In July of 2011 (54yrs old / 5’10/ 360lbs) I went to order a new suit and the clerk told me that he would need to order a 60 portly. With great disgust I knew I had had enough.

After 30 years of yo-yo dieting, I knew a change of life was in order. I studied healthy eating and began to walk daily. Several months into this new life I discovered the keys to success, protein (lean), patience, preparation, persistence and perspiration.

Whey protein was vitally important for it gave me the greatest fullness per calorie. Preparation, keeping the right foods available at all times. Patience and persistence, because the plateau thing is absolutely true! (It will break, be patient.) Perspiration, as exercise not only burns calories but gives a sense of accomplishment and well-being. After a year, I had lost 100lbs. and wondered if I could run. I had always admired runners especially a former boss who was a triathelete. One morning I did it! Two miles without stopping, I was hooked. In my 2nd year I have dropped an additional 65 lbs. My run times went from 12.5 minute/ mile in my 1st 5k to a recent 10k in 60 minutes! I hope this inspires others. I would be more than happy to help anyone. P.S Don’t get attached to your favorite clothes. No doubt, I should be Goodwill’s donor of the year!

-Mark Tondee


Showing Off Can Help Your Workouts

This is a point that needs to be made. I prefer to run where I can have privacy away from it all. So the farther away from the human race, the better in most cases. The solitude is what it is all about for peace and quiet and reflection. Nature is so lovely with the trees and lakes and other scenic stuff, after twenty or thirty minutes in the run, look so spectacular. Yes saying hello to a passing runner or bikers or a walker is fine. But what running is all about to many of us is a major league outlet to escape the turbulence in our lives and in the world we live in.

So when we decide that today is the day we want to run in a populated environment, there can be some major benefits that I will call the showing off factor just to get my point across. Now I am not saying we are all the same animals when it comes to wanting to run faster when others are watching which is part of my vain split personality on any given day. So if today is supposed to be a crawl run, then for sure a remote area is a must. But if everything feels good for me and I know I need to push a little, then having folks watching even if they couldn’t care less, has an effect on an up-tempo pace. I think most folks are like what I am depicting and want to look good out there. If this is your personality, then it can be a great help in your regimen to have a faster workout and one can use this method when you feel you need to run faster.

In summary of what is trying to be conveyed: We are runners and breathing hard and sweating is all part of our sport. So we can never look prefect out there like our professional heroes who are trained natural thoroughbreds. But we can use the showing off concept to go a little faster if it fits our personality, and it can be an added reward to our training.


The Running Experience Is So Personalized

Yes I believe a part of the intellect is increased by consistent running and maybe this is a result of general health or a calming that gives us an ability to think more clearly. This I hope is not taken as arrogance but a witnessed belief. Science would tell you more, but I have seen a clear increase in what I would assume would be, not the IQ we are born with, but more of acquired knowledge that comes with desire and discipline, which is part of a runner’s mentality.

Others will say that runners started off as that animal that attracted them to a loners sport so running does not increase intellect as they were the intellectual type from the start.

This I know – that the running experience is very personalized. Some run so they can eat what they want or for weight control, while others do it for the feeling of well being referred to as the endorphin high. For some it is training, for others sports or just general fitness. However, for a runner that has run consistently through their adult lives, it is a lifestyle or even more so, life itself!

This book generally states what we runners hate when we miss a scheduled day of our workouts. The trot becomes very much our lifestyle. Whether traveling for business or drinking a mixed drink at a cocktail party, it becomes who we are. We can’t help but bring up the subject and many of us expound on this passion as running has become so personalized to us. We define ourselves in part by our timeless passion. I have heard over and over again ex-runners who had to stop due to injuries, say how much they miss their favorite sport and wish they did not have to stop.

The personalized experience of us runners vary and yet we have so much common ground. We talk about our personal experiences of running in snow or rain or on the trails, up the mountains. And even though it is a personalized experience, when we talk together about our ventures in the great outdoors, usually the listeners head is bobbing up and down at what becomes a shared experience of a common bond.