For busy mom Dawn-Marie Orlando, running wasn’t always something she could do. But having lost 145 pounds, she’s been able to add running into her routine and it’s helped her reinvigorate her fitness routine while achieving new goals.
How did you first start running? 
It’s actually pretty recent. Biking has always been my thing but since losing a significant amount of weight I wanted to try running. I felt like I had the energy for it after getting from 20 minutes on the bike up to 60 minutes. Four of my sons are scouts on the path to Eagle Scout and one of the required merit badges is Personal Fitness. I thought running a mile with them would keep them on the track since it’s a time-consuming 12-week merit badge.
What kept you running?   
Seeing progress kept me running. I plateaued in my weight loss for a long, LONG time. I tweaked the diet, changed when I exercised, had crazy days with food but I just hovered at a certain weight. Once I got off the bike and changed the type of exercise (switching to running) the scale started moving again and moving QUICK.
What impact has running on your life? 
Since I’m basically running to lose weight, the impact has been huge. Everything from confidence to better clothes, to showing my kids you can still have goals as an adult and achieve them.
 Any running goals? 
I’d like to run a marathon one day. It would probably have to be one that lets you bypass the time requirements and run for charity. My company wants to start hosting 5ks every month so I’ll probably get a few of them under my belt first.
What advice would you give to other runners? 
I am a terrible source for advice on running. I’m still seeking advice on the subject since it’s still pretty new to me.
The best advice I have is to try it to see if it’s for you.  Find a good ‘Couch to 5K’ app and start slow.
Run to the finish
Run morning, night, or noon?
Whenever I can. I have 5 kids ranging from 3-17 so it’s tricky to be consistent.
Run outside or on the treadmill? 
I run outside
Favorite race or place to run:  
I like to run at an abandoned military base in my neighborhood. It’s quiet with very little traffic. The kids can spread out if we’re running together.
Favorite post-run food: 
I have a few post-run snacks that I really enjoy. I try and start with mint tea I keep in the fridge while I’m running. If I’m still hungry I either eat apples with almond butter, celery with cream cheese and everything bagel seasoning, or a Fairlife protein shake.
Running must-have (gear): 
Compression leggings!  I’ve lost 145 lbs. so loose skin is an issue. Empetua makes a strong pair that I love.
Best running accomplishment: 
Just starting is my greatest accomplishment. I hated running in gym class and played sports that involved very little running like softball and volleyball.
What you listen to when you run:
I listen to mostly classic rock but Sia, Bruno Mars, and other top 40 artists find their way into my playlist.