Whenever I look in the mirror, I am reminded that I have not always looked this good. Before you ask, yes I do sometimes look in the mirror and say, “Hey Everybody! Come and see how good I look!”

I know that it might sound conceited but it really isn’t. If you have seen pictures of me 4 to 5 years ago, you would notice a difference. My dad bod was in full swing I was at the heaviest I have ever been in my life. I lived a sedentary life for the most part outside of the physical demands of my news photographer job that I held at the time.

It was then, when the Rookie was 2-years-old, that I decided that I needed to do something. I could no longer come on sit in my recliner, grab a beer, and watch TV all night without much interaction with my son and wife. Or if there was any interaction it was mostly me being grumpy.

At the time we were on a budget, as a news photographer and the husband of a school teacher, we weren’t exactly rolling in money. It didn’t help that we were also putting our oldest through daycare which can easily cut a families budget in half, if not more.

The easiest and cheapest thing to do at the time to fix my growing dad bod, was to lace up some old tennis shoes, and head out the door down the sidewalk to run away from my former self. And that is exactly what I did, I literally ran away from my old dad bod.

Many people would like to think that a transformation like that can happen overnight, or in a couple of months, and don’t get me wrong, it can, but when you are the parent of a young child, it is hard to make happen it that quickly. Whatever your children doesn’t eat, usually ends up on your plate, and even though it might feel like you are getting a workout chasing a toddler who has found their new freedom around the house, really it isn’t what is needed to offset the extra serving of dinner that your kid gave you.

The moment I stepped on the scale and saw I was down 40 pounds it hit me, I was a runner. I don’t know why it took me stepping on the scale in that moment to realize that but it did. But it was in that moment that I needed to make an investment in my new (I say new even though it was 2 years after picking up my new hobby) found hobby of running.

I had the shoes because when you whether you are a new runner or veteran you realize that your shoes are everything. They can really make or break your run. But what I didn’t have was the gear to run outside when the seasons started to turn.

When summer becomes fall, you never know exactly what kind of weather you are going to run (pardon the pun) into. It could be 75 and sunny or it could be 30 and snowing. In prior years, I would spend many of the colder days down in our basement on our treadmill, too scared to go outside because I didn’t really have the budget to buy new gear to do so.

Many mornings as I headed down to the basement, the only thing that I would have needed to run outside would have been a jacket. For the longest time, I thought that I was going to need something big and bulky in order to keep myself warm.

Neither cost nor bulk should have been an issue. It wasn’t until I discovered Russell Athletic’s Fusion Knit Fleece that I was finally able to take care of my dad bod during the cooler fall and winter mornings. The moment I stepped outside in the fleece I could immediately tell that I was going to be kept warm while it kept the Kansas wind out. Not only that but the Scuba hood has a mesh lining that stays on my head on those windy runs. But here is the key with these fleece jackets, there was no added bulk. They are easy to pack into my backpack to have at work when it gets cooler and I have the freedom to move in them as I rake leaves in our yard for the 100th time.

Russell Athletic Fusion Knit Fleece is available at Walmart and at Walmart.com in a variety of colors that are sure to help the dad in your life with his dad bod.

Dad Bod

Full Disclosure: Russell Athletic compensated me for this post but the thoughts and opinions are my own.

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