Dr Sudhir Kumar, a Hyderabad based-neurologist, shared his inspiring fat-to-fit journey on Twitter. He once weighed 100 kg and could barely walk 5 km. He used to work for 16 to 17 hours a day and indulged in junk food and sweets on a regular basis. Adding to the weight gain was the bare minimum of sleep.
One fine day, when he saw the scales touching 100 kilos, he decided to embark on a weight loss journey and share his journey on Twitter. After starting his weight loss journey in 2020, he lost 30 kilos in his 50s. It is often said that weight loss in older adults can be difficult, but looking at Dr Kumar's fitness experiences, one can surely draw inspiration and start their health journey in the new year.
How Dr Kumar Started His Fitness Journey
Dr Kumar started his fitness journey on November 6, 2020. Initially, he started walking 5 km, then gradually increased to 10 km over four to six weeks. He then slowly started jogging and started running. He focused on distance and time on feet and not the pace while trying to keep his heart rate (HR) low and feeling comfortable.
Sharing experiences of my #fitness journey— Dr Sudhir Kumar MD DM���� (@hyderabaddoctor) January 1, 2023
Could be of help to those who have planned to start theirs in 2023
1. My earlier self:Weighed 100 kg, could walk 5 km with great difficulty
Negatives: Worked 16-17 hours/day; slept 4-5 hours; overeating, indulged in junk food and sweets pic.twitter.com/gX5aqmTgS1
Lifestyle Modifications For Weight Loss
Dr Kumar mentioned certain lifestyle changes that he made during his weight-loss journey. He had to make some changes in his day-to-day operations to see a stark difference in his weight. As shared by Dr Kumar himself, he:
- Reduced his working hours to eight to nine hours per day. He decided to plan his work in a better way without compromising on sleep and healthy food habits.
- Increased sleep duration to seven to eight hours per night
- Stopped consuming soft drinks; reduced junk food and sugar intake; reduced carbs and increased protein intake.
- Added strength training (three days per week) since December 2022
- Weight Loss Results Achieved
After making several changes in his diet, exercise and sleep patterns, he started to feel more energetic and focused when it came to work. Over time, his weight dropped to 70 kilos from 100 kilos. He further wrote on his Twitter that this enhanced his self-esteem and self-confidence. He also managed to reduce his resting HR from 72 beats per minute to 40 to 42 beats per minute. He mentioned that his HbA1C, cholesterol, and blood pressure also improved.
While sharing some statistics on his running performance, Dr Kumar wrote that in 2021, he ran for an average of 15 km per day. He did 339 runs of 10 km or more, 69 half marathons and one full marathon. In 2022, his average running was 12.6 km/day. He did 304 runs of 10 km or more, 43 half marathons, and finished the Ladakh marathon in 2:24 hours. He mentioned his best timings: 10 Km in 51:11 min; HM in two hours.
Doctor's Tips For Weight Loss
Sharing his journey with his followers, Dr Kumar also gave essential tips and tricks for weight loss, especially to those in their 50s. Here are a few takeaways from his journey:
- Consistency is the key, so show up every day
- Duration matters and not intensity
- Run at a pace you enjoy. Don't chase personal best, and do not try to compete with fellow runners
- Pace does improve on its own over time
- Cross-training is better than only running. It reduces the risk of injuries and boredom.
- Diet modification is necessary. Reduce calorie intake and eat in a shorter time window (time-restricted eating); intermittent fasting is good but difficult to follow for runners
- Sleeping for seven to eight hours is essential. Normal sleep duration reduces the risk of several serious diseases and increases longevity. Good sleep also improves mood and keeps you in better shape for long runs.
Dr Kumar stated that people should treat these tips only as helpful guides, and not as universal rules. Each person and their needs are different, so it is always good to consult your nutritionist, physical fitness trainer and doctor for a specific plan that would work best for you.
Image Credits: Dr Sudhir Kumar (@hyderabaddoctor)