Q: I am an officer in Missouri, and I have had some major physical set backs in the last several years. In 2004, I tore my ACL in a training accident and had reconstructive surgery. Before injuring the knee I was 5″9 and 230 lbs. I ran 3 to 4 times a week and about 5 miles each day.
In 9 months and after rehab I was up to 300 lbs! Since then I have not been able to get the weight off. I was able to get up to running 3 miles 3 days a week, but in 2009 I tore my miniscus in the same knee. So it just seems that I keep getting set back after set back.
I am now a reserve officer, and I work full time at a hospital doing security. I am still an active reserve officer, and I get out about 2 to 3 times a month and involved in the Street Crimes Unit at my department.
I am now down to about 270 lbs., but as you can imagine I am no where near wher I once was in my conditioning. I have had blood work and all kinds of tests to see what I could do about the weight loss, but my doctor says that my metabolism has just slowed down. I have tried every diet that you can think of, and I get 0 results. I am at a loss. Any ideas on what kind of work out or diet may benefit me? Any suggestions would be great.
My Answer: I’m sorry to hear about your injuries. Getting injured sucks, because many times the injury never really goes away. You think you’re healed, but then you just get re-injured later on in the future, sometimes when you least expect it.
You should, quite frankly, lay off running. Running is the most overrated form of exercise. Everybody who runs regularly gets injured or accumulates damage to their joints and bones. Remember that Clint Eastwood quote?
“It ain’t the years, it’s the mileage.”
Unless you are a mutant marathon runner (some people are built to run forever with no problem), then you should choose other forms of cardio. Something that isn’t going to pound your joints and wear down your ligaments. If you can do bicycling without any problem, then try that. Rowing is very good as well.
As far as weight training, try some sort of muscle spinning routine. In other words, light weight, extremely low rest periods (15-30 seconds) and high reps (8+). Just choose exercises that don’t aggravate your ACL. Muscle spinning is easier on the joints and will burn off fat.
With regards to diet, lay off the white carbs. Nothing starchy or sugary. Just meat, greens, water and tea.