Maffetone momma



Courtesy of the imperial war museum. Note the bottom line!

My interpretation of the maffetone method is that there are 3 parts to this;

1 DIET – un processed, low carb (similar to paleo)

2 EXERCISE, aerobic governed by heartrate

3 STRESS reduction, whether physical stress through over training /anaerobic training or psychological or due to lifestyle factors.

So I’ve been working on the stress. Picking up my meditation practice, realising that maybe I need to do this properly not just 5minutes here and there.

Diet  I’m about 3 weeks in. I’ve now reached the stage where not only do I not get physical sugar cravings, but it doesn’t take much will power to resist sugary treats. It hit me last night when we went to the cinema and Dave and Joe got ice cream and I wasn’t the least bit tempted to beg them to ‘let me taste it’.  Honestly, it can be a bit boring, meat, fish, cheese, veg, but I do have a bit of bread or rice now and again, just not every day.

Exercise. I haven’t really got a routine going yet with this. A jog in the park revealed that a considerable amount of walking was required to keep my heart rate below the threshold ( it took 15:45 to do a Mile). The stair machine or the elliptical trainer at the gym seem to be the best ways for me to do something at a steady pace and stay in the correct HR zone. At the end of an hour of exercise at this level I didn’t feel tired or out of breath at all. Now I have found what works though, I plan to stick with it for the next week and see if I can improve my aerobic threshold enough to get a steady jog going.

So how do I feel?  Good. Sleeping better.  I think that I look better, less strained and tired. I feel optimistic that the maffetone method offers the possibility of improving my fitness without leaving me physically exhausted or physiologically stressed. It will be a slow road but one that takes me safely in the right direction.



About mawil1

Hi my name is julie and I took up running at the age of 46! Hence 'mawil' Middle Aged Woman In Lycra. I did it at first because someone asked me to do a charity run with them. I couldn't run at all, but pride wouldn't let me be seen to be unable to run so I started a walk run programme. I stuck with it and to my surprise I found that I liked it- after a couple of weeks of progress I was hooked! My blog is about my progress in running and how I fit it in with the rest of my life.
This entry was posted in balance, fitness, habits, healthy diet, heartrate, low intensity, middle aged women, Motivation, Nutrition, running, slow run, Stress, time management, work life balence. Bookmark the permalink.

9 Responses to Maffetone momma

  1. So... says:

    The last couple of sentences are so right!

  2. oscardiamond says:

    Well, that puts guilt from eating bread on a different level! Good luck with your multi pronged approach to fitness and healthy well being. It seems to be working.

    • mawil1 says:

      Doesn’t it just? Modern public information tends to be softer and avoids the ‘blame’ culture. I think that people take less responsibility though.
      Nosey question. Were you fit, ie partaking in regular exercise before you had your MI or did you need to build up slowly?

      • oscardiamond says:

        Not a nosey question! I was regularly running for nearly 30 years before I had my MI at 58. Not over weight, quite fit cholesterol okay, BP probably on the higher side. I blame stress and cortisol levels over a long period.Recovered well from MI and easily got back into running. Parkrun came to Cambridge at the point of my recovery and I started to run much more consistently. I’m thinking hard about running and heart disease. I know of three runners in their 60s who have heart problems (2 had MIs) and 2 others in their 40s and 50s.

      • mawil1 says:

        Thanks, I wondered if you were ‘starting from the beginning’ after your MI, which clearly you weren’t. I have 2 colleagues who had MI’s in their 40’s, one with a family history but the other absolutely no risk factors at all, just work stress. What are you thinking about runners and stress? It appears that exercise alone isn’t the answer, although I suspect that being fit improves your chances of survival. Cardiac rehab must be really difficult for those who have never paid any attention to their health before.

  3. I haven’t heard of this way of eating and well….being. Sounds like it’s working for you, Julie. Going to have to look this one up!

    • mawil1 says:

      I think that you are already there Annie! From reading your blog I know that you eat healthily and avoid sugary things most of the time and you seem to have a good balance of work, family, friends and running which helps you to avoid stress. I think if people try to do too much, say running too many weekly miles before they are ready then running stops being stress relief, which it is for many people and instead turns into a source of stress in itself; first physically and then mentally when you stop seeing the benefits that you used to. I’ve learned over the last few years that consistency is key – you can’t ‘cram’ for a race like you might for an exam, but I’m not very good at consistency, I’m all in, or all out! learning to be moderate will be good for me in the long run, it’s just not that easy to change the habits of a lifetime!

      • I looked it up, It is very similar to LCHF but it has more of a way of life thing going than just a way of eating. I concur with everything you are saying. Consistency is key for sure. And so agree that life time habits are so hard to change but sounds like you are doing an excellent job of it. Keep it going !

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