How to get back into running after gaining weight? Well, I pondered on this for a long time.

To be precise, 13 years. But it finally started somehow last year even though I was an overweight runner.

So, I think I’ll be able to shed some light on this question and will be helping out a fellow overweight beginner runner with these tips.

I’ve covered all the required aspects to succeed.

Related: Run for Good: How to Create a Lifelong Running Habit

How to get back into running after gaining weight?

There are only three aspects that you need to understand and take are off, if you want to get back into running after gaining weight.

First is the mental aspect, second is the physical aspect and last but not least, your priorities.

You don’t run because you think you will not be able to run, people will think you are too old to run, you think you are too old to run.

All these things are inside your mind and are the biggest hurdles to cross.

If you can tackle that, then the rest of the things will fall in place.

Also, if you want to run a marathon make sure to check out How to run long-distance fast without getting tired?

The mental aspect…

Dress the part

Our minds are funny things. We can trick it to overcome its inhibitions.

When I started running, I got myself new running gear.

I bought a new running shoe similar to Brooks Ghost 13.

I bought a new fitness tracker. Garmin vívosmart HR Activity Tracker is a good choice if you are starting out.

I bought a new headset called the MPOW Flame Bluetooth headset.

And that’s it.

The excitement of getting these new things and wearing them did the trick.

Before I know, I started off on my first run. Though it did not end well, well that was a start.

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How many calories can you lose by running?

Let’s start off by motivating you.

You are probably running to lose weight.

Here is how many calories you can burn through running. 

Image: bestplaygear.com

and that too just by running for only 30 min.

Feeling pumped?

Here is more…

If you only run for this much of time, you can reap full health benefits of running like:

  • Improving cardio vascular health
  • Boosting immunity
  • Weight management
  • Confidence boost
  • Stress relief
  • Free from depression

All this is fine, but what if people say something to you.

You have gained weight and your overall appearance might have changed.

You have heard stories overweight runners gets taunted regularly.

Well, even if you are in ship shape, haters will comment.

How to stop feeling self-conscious while running?

When you are starting after a long time, you will feel self-conscious.

Believe me, I know that. I started to run after almost a decade of a break.

So, start early in the morning or late in the evening.

That time your surroundings will have fewer onlookers.

But you will get taunts and catcalling though less.

And then you will have “screw them moment” and completely free from the shackles of shame and guilt. 😉

Here are some tips that can help you deal with being self-conscious while running.

A word of caution. If you plan to run early in the morning or late in the evening then be alert.

These early morning safe running tips will help.

Also, make sure you have some sort of personal safety devices for runners with you.

Why I am running so slow?


Who are you comparing yourself with?

Your friends?

Your previous self?

Ah! Don’t fall in that trap.

Comparing yourself with someone else or even your previous self is deadly.

You will always feel inadequate and get discouraged.

You will never be able to able to make progress.

So, just set a goal and get moving.

Here are some sample goals any runner can follow.

They are especially great if you are a beginner or making a comeback after a long time and has gained some weight.

Another problem…

Once you start running, you may face this problem.

You will continue to run or train consistently, but you will find it increasingly difficult to run.

Don’t get afraid and don’t give up.

It mostly may be due to fatigue.

However, here is the complete reasons why your running performance may be dropping.

Physical Aspect

Now that you have dealt with the mental aspect of running, you need to take care of the physical aspects as well.

First of all, since you are stating after a long time, you should start off with the right expectation.

Setting expectation

This is not going to be easy.

You will face the ground reality.

You may not be able to run the same distance as your previous self.

Your timing has gone down.

Caught you…

Look you are doing that again…


You are comparing yourself with your earlier self.

It is a deadly sin when you are making a comeback.

And this is the reason why this exercise to set expectations is so important.


  • Find out what time you take to run a particular distance.
  • Then, find out how much performance you need to improve to do it at your desired time.

In this article, I’ve described the exact step and formula to find out the desired time.

Have a look.

How to build stamina for running?

Your expectation is set…

Now is the time to get to work, aka running…

The first step will be to re-learn breathing during running.

This will help you to utilize your blood’s oxygen, more effectively to fuel your running.

Don’t worry, since you were running, the process is stored in your muscle memory.

You would hardly need 2-3 running sessions to get it back.

Next focus on building stamina.

You must focus on building it at a sustainable pace with special care for your diet.

Believe it or not, your food plays a major role in developing your stamina.

Next, take care of the bodily aspect as well. Strengthen your hips to avoid any injury.

These guides will provide you with a step by step approach to building stamina.

How to stick with a running plan?

If you are running for weight loss, the only way to be successful is to be able to stick with a plan.

This is the most crucial part.

You can plan n-number of times, however, if you don’t stick with it, nothing will change.

But sticking to a plan is hard. So hard that at times you will think yourself as crazy.

Monotony, frustration and everything else will get into your way.

At this point, I generally don’t think much about anything. Just focus on the current day.

After a couple of days, this feeling subsides and the rest becomes normal.

Here are 9 ways to stick to your running plans.

Also, switching things up a bit will break the monotony.

Go to a gym to run on a treadmill or do some rowing.

Whatever it is, just keep moving.


Despite your best planning, at times life your catch up with you.

You may have to forego your running for something more important, like taking care of your baby or going to work.

Maybe you got injured from one of your running sessions and need to rest.

All these things are important and you cannot turn a blind eye and go running.

And that’s OK. Get back to it, when you have taken care of your priorities and emergencies.

However, if you are skipping your run to meet friends on a regular basis or partying, then you need to be honest with yourself.

Maybe, you don’t want to lose weight bad enough or maybe just scared of failure that your efforts will not bring results.

But trust me, these fears will be there, but give your efforts a fair try.


I guess I’ve covered all the aspects of how to get back into running after gaining weight.

It is not as difficult as you think. You have gathered some courage and just start.

If you can overcome your mental barrier, then everything else will fall in place.

As I told earlier in this post, dressing the part is the most important aspect of overcoming your mental fear.

At the very least, get a new pair of running shoe like Brooks Ghost 11

This is the single best running shoe in the market that caters to most of the running needs.

And don’t worry, just enjoy the process.

Madhusree Basu

Madhusree Basu

Author, Admin

Blogger and a fitness enthusiast. She loves running and Yoga and everything in between. She started running to manage her weight and to eat to her heart’s content. A true foodie at heart she shares whatever knowledge she has gained throughout the years about weight management and fitness.