Kyle White never thought he would be a runner. A year ago he wasn’t even a consistent walker, but a lot has changed since he decided to get active.
“I think my COVID experience early on was a lot like everybody else’s,” White said.
“A lot of Netflix, a lot of junk food, a lot of SkipTheDishes. We were really sedentary. I was gaining some weight. We were slipping into some bad habits.”
That inactive lifestyle got the six-foot-five man to a weight he never thought he would reach, stepping on the scale less than a year ago at 430 pounds.
He decided it was time to make a change.
“Back in March of 2020, I hit my absolute highest weight. I was starting to feel it in my joints. I was starting to have more and more tweaks in my back and I was really worried about my heart,” White said.
So he decided to walk before he would run.
“I started just going for little walks with my dog. I have a very little dog. He doesn’t walk much, but it got me out of the house a little bit,” White said.
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“Then I thought, ‘This is actually kind of fun,’ and started introducing some jogging into my routine as well.”
According to the president and CEO of Participaction, while COVID-19 has posed challenges to everyone’s overall physical and mental health, the pandemic has given people a chance to reflect on what is most important in their lives.
“For many, that is our own health and the health of our loved ones,” Elio Antunes said last fall in announcing a 24-hour movement guideline.
“A key driver to our overall health is incorporating movement of any type or intensity into our daily routines. Having a healthy day should be top of mind for all of us right now, and that means being active, reducing sedentary behaviour and getting a good night’s sleep.”
White started following the Canadian Health Guide for his nutrition plan, which along with his consistent walking and running led to him losing 136 pounds.
His waist size went down as well, from a 58 to a 44.
“I try to keep it light with clothes. I don’t want to make too much of an investment if I know I am going to continue losing,” White said.
Recently, White completed his first five-kilometre run, and is now setting his sights on a 10-kilometre run during the Saskatchewan Marathon in June.
His advice to others is simple: get up and get active, starting today.
“Step number one, try. Try something. If it’s going for a short walk, that’s sometimes all it takes. Whatever works for you… just try that.”