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I realize everyone is different, and I am no expert by any stretch of the imagination, but I can share what I have found to be helpful.

As I mentioned in my first post, running on the treadmill, in my opinion, works well in the beginning.  It was great to work on my stamina. It also allowed me to build confidence and establish I could actually run a mile.  It was hard in the beginning (it still is) and being able to concentrate and watch my progress was great.  However, once you can run a mile on the treadmill I recommend getting outside and running.

Next, I was in search of finding good shoes.  I had always turned to Nike, as they were the only shoes I ever really wore for exercise.  I tried Avia’s in the past, also.  But, I was finding my feet were killing me after running just a mile on the treadmill.  I decided I needed another pair, possibly a different style?  I went to Nike again.  I tried on a few types and bought shoes that said they were specifically for running.  My feet were aching worse than the first pair!  I took them back that night.  I then tried another pair of Nike’s that felt pretty cushiony and again it wasn’t enough.  I thought… if I just buy some gel inserts they will work.  Nope. No joy.  I then began searching the web and found a few posts by heavier framed men and some women with a common complaint that Nike’s don’t seem to work well for heavier framed people.  I felt so validated!  It wasn’t only me!  I then decided to visit an actual, individually owned  store that sold running shoes.  I didn’t hit the chain store.  I talked to the person working there and found out he was an actual runner! Score! He can help me.  He recommended I try a pair of Asics.  I tried on the Kayano gel Asics.  What a dream shoe! I think these shoes are amazing.  He informed me they were the most cushioned running shoe on the market.  I didn’t care the price tag.  If my feet hurt I won’t run.  So, I paid the $150.00.  I tried them outside and I increased my mileage from the first run in them.  My feet didn’t ache and I was not focusing on the pain anymore. That was a HUGE hurdle.

Next, running or exercise bra’s.  I am a DDD bra size.  I use to wear 2 jogging bras, and sometimes with a regular bra underneath.  I felt suffocated, but that is what I had been reduced to.  Not only are we hard on ourselves for not having possibly the “ideal” shape according to the media (thankfully that is beginning to change!) But, try finding exercise clothes that actually are functional when one is larger than a C cup, and if you didn’t already feel discouraged that will do it.  It’s ridiculous.  Fear no more.. I have found Champion exercise bra’s come in DDD and up 44, I believe.  They have three sturdy metal hooks in the back.  Wide shoulder straps to hold securely, and super supportive.  I can wear just one jogging bra now!  If anyone has found other great exercise bra’s feel free to share.  I would love to try others.

In my opinion those are some of the key elements that can make or break a person with a larger body type from continuing to run.  Had I not wanted to run bad enough, and refused to give up- I might not have realized that with a few tweaks of a great pair of running shoes, and running clothing that allowed me to feel comfortable enough to just run it made a tremendous difference in my experience.  I hope these suggestions might just be the key you need to not give up and stay motivated to get out there!