Big Change is Possible

I just texted this to a friend but we want to share it here. Positive change IS possible!


So we ran the BAA 5K this morning. And then went shopping for Michael because most of his pants are too big. He tried on these size 34 slim fit slacks and they fit great so we got two and a blazer. Then Michael said, wow at my heaviest I was wearing a size 54 pants and now a 34 fits great! #BigChangeBigResults



Pray, Run, and Fuel Healthily Through Rough Times—new challenges this week

I don’t have anything extraordinary to report this week. It has been a ROUGH week. My grandmother passed away at the grand age of 100 years and 3 months over a week ago and on Wednesday we had her funeral. I came from the funeral to the pediatrician’s office then the hospital emergency room with my oldest daughter who had swelling feet and legs and was diagnosed with nephrotic syndrome. They are not sure if it is related to any of her other disabilities or medical conditions and that will be a long term process to figure out but in the meantime we have several short-term, intermediate, and long-term treatments to consider. I’m grateful for some results like a normal kidney ultrasound, normal kidney function blood tests, and optimal blood pressure but as puzzled as the doctors as to why at her age nephritis is popping up with protein coming out her urine instead of staying in the blood as it should. I’m grateful that she is such a resilient child who has a spirit of joy that doesn’t diminish despite her many challenges. This girl had 8 eye surgeries in her first year of life and was the happiest baby I’ve ever known. She laughed so much that people in the hospital waiting rooms (where we spent a lot of time) would be surprised and say, “Is that the baby laughing so hard?!” And then we all would smile and it would lighten the atmosphere of the room. 20 years later she is still resilient laughing and joking with others even though she is uncomfortable and walking gingerly. She won’t be able to run in the BAA 5K with us next weekend but will be at her little brother’s training session one day next week to help him and the other young athletes with visual impairments to continue training.

So with all of these stresses and much more not shared here, I’m sure some have wondered whether I binged or ate something outside my healthy nutrient-rich, whole food plant based diet. The answer is No. Not because I’m a saint or a strong person. It’s because, by GOD’S grace, my mind–not just my body–has changed. My response to the stresses were more prayer, running and other exercises, and Continuing to fuel with healthful foods to continue to deal with everything. It’s a false narrative and advertising tricks by industries only interested in profits that eating junk, overeating on anything (healthy or not), and drinking will ease our distress. I remember driving from one appointment this week and reflecting on this and recalling how the sugar and junk food highs back in my obese days only led to more lows of depression and stress and low coping. I never want to go back there and I’m grateful to the Lord for showing me that. I’m grateful for those lessons.

Please keep Mika and our family in your prayers and positive thoughts with our newest challenges and the older ones too. Thank you to everyone already doing so and who have messaged and called.

Here are some pictures from our week.

P.S. I forgot to add that I had my physical this week too and my doctor was happily surprised that I have remained slim and healthy and that my blood work was great. She was surprised because she said this doesn’t usually happen.


Running in the snow? Yes.

Yes, it’s Spring.

Yes, it’s April 2nd.

Yes, it’s in the 30s and snowing.

Yes, this is Boston.

Yes, I hate the snow, especially in the Spring.

Yes, I needed to run 30 minutes for my mental and physical health.

Yes, I feel awesome now!



Backyard Running is Back!

Unless we have an April Fools Blizzard like we did several years ago, I feel confident saying Spring is here and Backyard Running is back!!

I covered up my hair, put on my boots, and did a quick sweep of the yard and wipe down of the top tables where I tend to leave my water bottle and sweater. Then I put on my headphones, chose my favorite playlist and said I would run for 5 songs at least. By the end of 5 songs, I had run for 30 minutes straight and over 2 Miles (according to the Fitbit :)). I’m not breaking any records out there but I feel marvelous and happy!! Nice to share the air with the chirping birds again.



Keep the food simple

I’m on the mailing list of many plant based experts, including neuroscientist Susan Pierce Thompson. This vlog on the fat/weight set point is a must-watch for BOTH those who want to lose weight AND those who have lost a substantial amount of weight and want to keep it off or even get a bit smaller. Several weeks ago Julianna Heaver and Ray Cronise alluded to this phenomenon on the Rich Roll Podcast when they said that plant based food is getting so hyper palatable that we can make a “healthy” version of anything now and still be 100% SOS free plant based and that is an issue in itself. We are still obsessed with food. This is why I said in the short book I’ve written that it is NOT a recipe book but a book about my journey and my path to weight loss, fitness, wellness, and health. It has a few recipes for these reasons but much more ideas on SIMPLE ways just eat simple foods. This is the reason that I now eat a few cups of plain spring mix salad leaves with a tablespoon of walnuts for nutrient absorption before eating anything else for breakfast because I consider the raw greens to be like medicine—plain, simple, and powerful—and find that they keep my brain craving free. That’s why my favorite meals are just bean veggie stew or a large salad with cooked vegetables or a baked sweet potato added. That is why after Dr. Fuhrman explains the science behind the advantages of a Nutritarian WFPB diet in Eat To Live he has a page that gives a few lines summary on page 223 (and bottom of 222) with the following:

“Keep it simple….

Simplify, Simplify, Simplify

Breakfast: fresh fruit

Lunch: salad, beans on top, and more fruit

Dinner: salad and two cooked vegetables (1 lb.), fruit dessert

You do not have to prepare fancy recipes all the time.”

I highly recommend watching this vlog linked below. And I will be looking to order and read the book referenced in it, The Hungry Brain.

We don’t want to hear it but so-called bland food keeps one healthy and slim. Believe me, our food-addicted brains adjust and vegetables and fruits that God gave us DO begin to taste good and we realize we don’t need chemical foods and hyper palatable enhancements of our WFPB foods anymore. I’m constantly working on getting more simple with food. Food is fuel. There is so much more in life to focus on, live, and thrive! It’s a journey.


It was so fun celebrating living and thriving at my birthday celebration last night! Nice to hang out with family and friends, and see some long-time Friends again!

P.S. My husband Michael Besson is the professional musician—guitarist and bassist. I was just holding his guitar for him for a few minutes and pretending to be a rock star. Lol.

Keep Calm: It’s Nalida’s Birthday :)

Keep Calm: It’s Nalida’s birthday! 🙂

I thank God for another year of life today!

This past weekend I was telling two of my sisters that I actually feel better in my late 40s than I felt in my 20s and 30s. Then I reflected, actually than I’ve ever felt since Kindergarten! Can you imagine. That is the last time I remember Running freely and feeling active. I started getting chubby and less active in elementary school. By middle school and High school I was overweight and then obese. I hated gym class and struggled through it. I never played sports. I felt tired and embarrassed a lot during activities. I only ran, belaboredly, to catch a bus. Now I’m RUNNING and moving because I can and want to, by God’s grace, and I feel great fueled by a Nutritarian Whole Food Plant Based diet and lifestyle! I’m on a wellness committee at work and in a few weeks am leading an indoor rock climbing group.

I had some moments of regrets since last week upon reflecting on my upcoming birthday. If only I would have started this journey to freedom earlier! No, it didn’t solve all my problems and challenges in life. But I’m better able to deal with them. I prayed to let go of regret and to just be thankful. I am so grateful! Yesterday I saw this plaque at one of my schools and it sums it up well:

“Live the life you’ve always dreamed of. Be fearless in the face of adversity. Never stop learning. Use your imagination whenever possible. Recognize the beauty that surrounds you. Remember where you came from, but never lose sight of where you are going.”