Name: Ellen Jaffe Jones
Birthplace: St. Louis
Current Residence: Anna Maria Island, FL
Sports: Running, Personal Trainer, AFAA Certified
RRCA Certified Running Coach
5K PR 27:50 at age 58 (faster than when I started running at age 28!)
Frequent 5K Age Group winner
1st Marathon at age 58, 5th oldest woman to finish Palm Beaches Marathon 2010.
Florida Senior Games 2011, Bradenton/Sarasota (1st track meet ever!) 2 Gold Medals (1st PL)
800 Meters 8:03 (Would have placed 8th in national 2009 games, the last time games were held)
1500 Meters 8:03 (Would have placed 7th in national 2009 games)
Have run 5 half marathons, many 10Ks, 5 and 4 milers. After training with a coach, PR’d in most races in 2009-2010.
-Aerobics and Fitness Association of America Personal Trainer
-Road Runners Club of America Certified Running Coach
-Volunteer Running Coach, Manatee High School Girls Cross Country, and Track & Field Team
Accomplished endurance and sprint runner
Frequent 5K Age Group Award Winner, Sarasota/Bradenton/Tampa area
1st marathon 2010.
Florida Senior Games Gold Medals for 800 meter & 1500 meters
Personal Trainer at Island Fitness, Holmes Beach, FL
Active and on boards of local running clubs in Bradenton, FL
-Work with clients structuring in home programs, gym programs and couch to 5K walk/run programs
Ellen Jaffe Jones spent 18 years in television news as an investigative reporter and anchor. She has won the highest honors in broadcasting, including two Emmys and 1st Place for the National Press Club's Consumer Reporting Award. After leaving television, she earned high returns for her clients as a financial consultant at Smith Barney, where she was dedicated to socially responsible investing.
As the only healthy person in her immediate family, Ellen's passion is helping others avoid the pain and suffering she's witnessed since early childhood. Her mother, aunt, and both sisters had breast cancer. After nearly dying from a colon blockage at age twenty-eight, Ellen was told by her doctors that she needed to do things differently to avoid her family's fate.
The media have reported on the significant weight loss and improved health that Ellen's students have experienced after taking her cooking classes, which are affiliated with The Cancer Project, part of the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, a national nonprofit organization. The media have also called Ellen's life "an experiment to beat the odds." She often places in 5K running races and ran her first marathon at age fifty-eight. She coaches adult running groups and is certified by the Aerobics and Fitness Association of America as a personal trainer. Ellen's weekly column, "Feasting on Fitness," appears in the Anna Maria Island Sun, and her monthly column, "Running Fitness," appears in the Running Journal. She wrote "Eat Vegan on $4 a Day" after watching too many news stories that said food stamp recipients could only afford Twinkies and mac & cheese. Visit Ellen's website at www.vegcoach.com.
Ellen became vegan for health and ethical reasons. As a reporter, she saw some of the early undercover video of elephants being abused by trainers at circuses. She brought her young children to protests of circuses and belonged to some early food co-ops, aswell as encouraged her children to help in the backyard organic garden. As a reporter, Ellen saw that newsroom management didn’t take animal rights seriously. Yet she continued to focus on other ways to get animal friendly stories covered focusing on animal shelters and puppy mills. While her current book is about the economics, environmental and health reasons to eat vegan, her heart has always been in all sides of the issue. Ellen is totally convincedthat a vegan diet enhances her current race running performances.
When and why did you become interested in fitness?
I have been going to gyms since jiggle belts and Jane Fonda. We used to have family reunions at hospital bedsides and joked about the hospital wings that the cost of our current family’s illnesses had paid for. When my aunt died of breast cancer in our home when I was 5, I began the lifelong investigative reporting job of my life trying to dodge the family genes that not only gave all women except me breast cancer, but in addition, many got heart disease, diabetes, Alzheimer’s, arthritis, osteoporosis and varicose veins. All my life, I’ve been told those conditions were hereditary, but I have not gotten a single one. I didn’t get all the good genes. As the youngest in my family, I had plenty of time to figure out what worked and what didn’t. Although my parents were active, especially my father, diseases prevented them from lifting my children, let alone baby-sitting them. As new vegan Bill Clinton is fond of quoting my lifelong mantra, “I want to be around for the grandchildren.” ;)
Every race I do is for my three daughters and in memory of those who could not be at the finish line.
How would you describe your nutrition program?
Low fat, plant based. When I need to drop a few pounds, I revert to my fav weight loss plan, Dr. McDougall’s Maximum Weight Loss book. It is also similar to PCRM’s recommendations, which I have outlined in my book.
How would you describe your training program?
Since I am a certified running coach, and am a volunteer running coach for our local high school girl’s cross country and track teams, I have had many years of studying what works. As I have aged, I have followed some excellent senior fitness advice to drop running every day and run only every other day. So I run at least 3 miles 3-4 days a week, including a long 5-10 mile longer run. I also do speed work on one day at a local track or park. I cross train on the off days, and rest one day a week. Depending how much I’m working out weight training with my clients, I’ll add more weight training once or twice a week.
I’m a huge believer of anything core and try to hold a plank position 2-6 minutes once a week. I also do lots of crunches and medicine ball tossing. I incorporate dynamic stretching exercises into warm-ups before running, such as lunges, squats, twists and swings. I make sure I have a recovery protein/carb combo within an hour of exercise to promote good muscle rebuilding. I try to always do at least 10 minutes of stretching after any aerobic or weight training workout. I swim in the Gulf of Mexico at least once a week right after a long run during warm months. Local runners swear by it! Heaven!