Looking for my Patterns of Healthy Diet Motivation in 2021

Of course 2020 was the year of the pandemic and many family challenges as well. Three deaths of family members plus my dog. Cancelled all outside activities.

Baby showers via zoom.
My first grandchild – a happy healthy boy!
My daughter moved into her own house.

I gained 8 pounds from March to July. Then lost most of it because of stress of hospital visits and 24 hour care of loved one. After he passed away, cold weather arrived and gained 10 pounds.

No gym. Lots of TV. Sourdough bread and big portions.

In January I rejoined weightwatchers, now WW. I’ve lost 4 1/2 pounds so far and am determined to work their program for the next 2 1/2 months so I’m back on track. On track is key.

Also doing grief counseling so I’m not in tears all the time. Just pulling myself up by the bootstraps only makes me into a resentful martyr.

My 3 words: activity. fit. strong.

My plan: 1) track food. prep food. 2) Move 60 minutes activity a day. 3) Strength train 2 days a week. 4) Activate the parasympathetic nervous system (via meditation, music, nidra)

Goal: be ready for biking hills in April. Raccoon Run 5k. Something extreme in summer after my vaccine kicks in and be with people again. I’ve become a hermit! Ready to kick that!

2020 Goals for Healthy Diet Motivation

So last year I tried the Phil Mafetone don’t train at high heart rate levels and worked out for 3 months in the winter/spring at around under 115 beats per minute.

It was a very very slow jog or a too fast walk. Bearly doing my spinning. Impossible to see the heart rate monitor when biking in the sunlight.

That whole idea was a bust. My cholesterol went high and I gained weight. My doctor said, “Go back to what you were doing.”

Meanwhile my ankle was really tweaked during the jumping reaction I had to a snake during training for the half marathon. While I worked on PT with it and getting my balance back, it continued to give me trouble.

While the taping job worked for not damaging it further, the short shift of my training took it’s toll on the fun of doing the race.

Had a run in with a tick (in May) and a bee (in August.) Not good for my body and affected me more than it should have.

Other than that, I was active in the summer and doing pretty well though September but in October turned into a couch potato. Took the month off and got discouraged. Gained more weight.

November 2019 I got back on the horse. Spinning 2x a week, circuit training 3 x a week. Some yoga and meditation but more focus on hiit workouts. December was good. January 2020 is pretty good but continue to fight sinus. I’m lifting heavier and being more consistent in my work outs.

Goals for 2020:
Stick with the habits. Declutter to focus.
Get back into the 150’s
Do a couple of 5 k’s again to work up to fun running
Stop trying to run with people who are faster than me, go my own pace and own it.

Running at the Back of the Pack

I’m considered a slow runner and that’s okay by me. I’m also a slow walker.I have short legs and a naturally short stride.

Doing races from the back of the pack is a totally different experience than trying to PR with a Personal Record.

I like taking photos along the way. Thanking the volunteers. Waving to the little kids. Petting the doggos and puppers. Exchanging a quick conversation with spectators. “Nice Sign!” “Whoo Hoo!”

I don’t like when I’m clearly walking and someone shouts. RUN YOU CAN DO IT. When clearly I’m on a walk break. Or just on a walk race.  I’ve been last before. Or among the last many times.

What makes it is the mind set.  It’s tough if there is no bananas left. Or water. Or the announcer already gave out awards and even though you were 3rd in your age group, they ran the tape before you finished.

I’ll never be the fastest. But I can be one of the ones who has a lot of fun. And hey, ultimately, fun is what keeps me motivated.

Update: No races so far in 2019. Transferred my CLE half bib to someone else. Right ankle continues to be aggravated even with my pt exercises. Very short walks. A lot of yoga and moderate amount of spinning. Current mantra: In breath “Resiliance” Out breath “Resistance.” Continuing to keep the weight down and weighed in at 163.0 today. Changed my eggs everyday to egg whites or oatmeal everyday in an effort to lower my cholesterol. Got my a1c down to 5.3.

What’s working: Eating lots of vegetables. Eating carbs in the morning. Enough water. Meditate and get enough sleep. Count my blessings. Focus on the beauty of nature. Moderate exercise (around 130 heart rate) enough to get the good hormones going but not enough to be ravenous or exhausted.

End of 2018 Thoughts

Healthy Diet Motivation is starting into the 9th year and I am a bit amazed by myself keeping the weight off. At my last doctor visit she said “you weight exactly what you weighed last visit!” (And that was 20 pounds less than a doctor visit when I got the ‘you better buy a treadmill’ lecture – different doctor!)

From my very first post:

“Today I’m going to focus on my healthy diet motivation which is filling up plastic bags with cans of food and then standing on the scale with all of them to look at what I used to weigh and how heavy that is.”

Current Weight – 162 at end of Dec 2018- Range throughout the year was 155 to 165.

Eating Patterns – pretty much 90% eggs for breakfast, 70% with spinach/mushrooms. Have abandoned the tumerick. Have been doing some intermitten fasting, but only by 2 hours or so after first twinge of eating thoughts. Tried to finish eating by 7:30 each night (about 85%.) and not eating first thing maybe 50% to between 10am to noon. Got fasting glucose from 91 to 89. Lunch focus on veggies. Dinner – ate early. about 95% meals at home which was much easier to focus. Drinking – less than 3 drinks a month. Light beer and white wine.

Running – CLE half, Twinsburg duo (2-10-2) and Akron half. Lots of right ankle trouble in September, but rest of races were good. Have stayed off the running from Oct/Nov/Dec. Focused on strengthening ankle. Also did Raccoon Run and Firecracker 5Ks. Too hot during August bike ride.

Workouts – Yoga. Yoga. Yoga. Mostly meditative and restorative. Good for my pulse and central nervous system. Some planks. Some balance (esp on right foot) some weights. Maybe 5 spinning classes this fall for cardio.

Improvements – Mentally stronger. Working on resilience. better sleep. Focus on recovery over workouts. Heart rate consistently down around 53 – 54 resting rate again, even with taking my parents to all those doc visits.

What I wished I did differently – More ankle stability and calf rolling.
Do not react when I see a snake. (Twice in my life I’ve ruined 6 months of therapy by freaking out over a little garden snake.) Lose 10 pounds before August hot bike ride so I’m riding at a 155 or less weight range.

What I will do next year –
Working on getting my a1c down below 5.6 and fasting glucose from 89 to lower. Too borderline for me. More yoga and mediation.

Eat the plan my doc gave me. Focus on reducing sugar and carbs with the metabolic eating plan my doc gave me. Up healthy fats, lots and lots of vegetables, healthy meats. (avoid processed lunch meats, cured meats.) Make more slow cooked meats and broths.

More walking. Get back to a 13 minute mile for the half. Already signed up for Cleveland. Serious training starts in 3 weeks.

Bike more miles in 2019 – how about 2019 miles??? LOVE IT. More 10 mile rides each day out of my driveway.

2018 Akron Half – I finished!

They say to have an A, B, C goal for the race. My A goal was to finish under time, which I missed by 1:47…

But I nailed my B and C goal, which probably should have been my A Goal:

I finished without doing any damage to my Achilles! And wow, is that a win. I really can’t get over it. No pain. None. What’s the deal with that?!! All that rehab and prehab, that’s what!

  • side monster walks
  • one leg balance, other leg slider
  • lay on side and do little circles with foot
  • heel raises

meanwhile – continue with what has been working:

  • Rolling
  • Golf ball toes and joint in foot
  • Walk the hills
  • Thera gun on my calf knot (homedics)
  • Amazing KT tape job by a professional skater from Orlando.

REALLY!!! It’s amazing to me that these tiny PT exercises are strengthening something in my hips and feet.

I thought it was toast after seeing a snake on my 8.5 of my 10 mile training run two weeks before Akron. Honestly, I could hardly walk.

Akron again? Hell yes. But I’ve got to find the right shoes that don’t give me blisters and don’t aggrevate my achilles. The height is right, but the heel support around the achilles is not cutting it.

Also, have to work on my mental running game. Get the right music, the right attitude. And figure out how to keep my resiliance when I’m on the struggle bus.

CLE Half Marathon – Done and FUN!

I had a blast doing the 2018 Cleveland Half Marathon on Sunday. Yes it was rainy. Yes it was cold. Yes I was more than a half hour slower than the half I did last fall.

But I actually had so much fun, I couldn’t stop smiling. Took pictures. Posed for pictures. Enjoyed myself fully for over 3 hours… actual time: 3:25:22.05 or a 15:41 average pace.

I would definitely do it again or recommend it to a friend.

Now 4 days later, I’ve already done several long walks and this morning an exercise class too. I feel strong. And I feel really proud of myself for doing something hard.

Awesome experience. Well organized race with many many volunteers. Because of the rain, the spectators were light, but they came out after 10 am when the sun started to peek thru. (The race started at 7 am)


My plan going forward is to continue training – both bike and running and break my PR in Akron after a summer of working out.

Fun at the Raccoon Run

I had a ball yesterday at the Raccoon Run. First off, I ran before the race – a 5K before the 5K, getting 3.1 miles in as a warm up. Then ran the race. Then hung around for the awards, where I won first in my age group. Then ran another 4 miles as training for the CLE half marathon that is coming up in about 3 weeks!

It was very cold – 33 degrees, maybe 36 when I was done. And I got sweaty and cold twice while having the breaks in between the first 3.1K and the race and the second break, waiting until they got all the age groups done (it takes a while to get to 60-65 when they do both male and female at each 5 years.)

Got photos taken with the Raccoon character. And with a good friend of mine who has raced with me for the past 3 years. She is 9 years younger so her speed doesn’t mess up my age group award! We both won for our age groups!

I finished with a 13:51 per mile time or 43 minutes 30 seconds, but still felt good about it – I was able to “sprint” at the end, I stopped and got some photos until my phone’s battery died and I thanked the volunteers/encouraged others.

Later in the afternoon, when to the dog park and walked 5 laps around the lake. I’m amazed that I’m NOT SORE today.

Maybe all the taping, pacing, rolling, golf ball, tennis ball, stretching is working!! Yeah!!!

Slow Start

I’ve been doing more cross work outs than running. The weather has had pockets of no ice/snow. Sunday was one of those and I got 4 miles in.

By now I thought I’d be doing 4 miles 3x a week for an average of 12 miles a week, but last week I think I only got in a total of 7.

Been grabbing steps/runs/jogs when I can, and not all at once which is much less satisfying. I’m definitely getting a slow start to my training for the Cleveland half.

From a food/weight standpoint, I’m down from a year ago, but I still haven’t lost the weight I regained in the fall.  I’m not sure why exactly, but I gained some of the weight back that I lost last year.  Must have kept eating the same, but working out less. I did a lot of yoga and weight lifting, but not a lot of cardio.

I still have a lot of the muscles I gained in the fall, but also the weight. This spring (still winter but it’s raining so it feels like spring) I’m back into cardio and less weight lifting.

What I am Reading and Listening to today:

Today is Jan 28, 2018.

First official day of CLE Marathon Half training. 16 weeks from today I’ll be on the starting line. Nervous and excited. Hopefully ready.

Since I’ve really laid off my regular running, done a lot of strength training and lots of PT on my right ankle/achilles heel, I’m going to start back into my training with a 10 minute dynamic warm up, 3 miles of 2 minute jog/1 minute walk followed by stretching/rolling and ice..

Reading/Listening to today:

FatGirlRunning – the Minervantor. Very inspiring. Love her. She writes in a way that  I can visualize it.

Fast Talk, ep. 32: a cyclist’s guide to the weight room. in Velo News Jess Elliot explains fundamentals of strength training workings. First time I’ve listened to this podcast and I just downloaded it so I can listen during today’s run (jog/walk)

Keep it up David: 7 years of keeping 160 pounds off. Great inspiration!

HoHoRuns – Recap of her 50th half marathon – First Light marathon:

Sharing inspiration at a new location

I have teamed up with my running buddy to help me stay motivated as well as share inspiration. We’ve started a website/podcast community.

Fit. Strong. Women over 50. Becoming Elli.

Becoming Elli – Strong. Fit. Women over 50.

It’s called Becoming Elli. We want to connect like minded women over 50 who are working to become healthier, fit and strong into the second half of their life.

Staying on track with my maintenance  as well as actually increase my fitness level are long term goals that a way more than a well-intentioned-but-forgotten new years resolution.

I’m loving the new things I’m learning: podcasting, new recipes and ideas that I’ve never considered.

You can find it online at www.becomingElli.com or on facebook or Twitter at @becomingelli.