Thoughts on Life, Art, Photography, Technology, Teaching and Travel…..

“Can Do” Attitude!

Its been awhile since my last post and this one is not related to art, travel or photography.  Since turning 60 I’ve been thinking about and confronting the physical limitations of the aging process. Ever since I was in the Army back in the mid 70’s I have enjoyed running, sports and some type of daily exercise.

When I got to Basic Training I was 25 pounds overweight and didn’t exercise regularly. My drill sergeant must have seen something in me because he pushed me to my limit everyday. Especially when it came to physical training and running.  I can remember like it was yesterday, him ranting at our platoon about getting a “Can Do” attitude.  That saying has a stuck with me  all my life. I left basic training 30 pounds lighter and one of the fastest runners in my platoon. Thanks to my drill sergeant.

Over the years I’ve learned you can overcome a great many challenges both physical and mental if you maintain a “Can Do” attitude.  Up until my 50’s I was blessed with great health and enjoyed playing competitive racquetball and running in 5 and 10k races.  As 60 closed in on me, I started gaining weight and slowing down.  I injured my left thigh and tore my right Rotator Cuff and had to have surgery. Needless to say I gave up racquetball for 3 years.

Training at MC Crossfit

Training at MC Crossfit

Eight months ago I returned from a trip to Central America. I was 25 pounds overweight due to lack of exercise and eating a daily diet of tortillas, beans, cheese and eggs.  Needless to say, I was not happy with myself. I knew I had to do something drastic to get back into shape.  My normal routine at the local Sports Center was not going to push me hard enough to shed the excess weight so I joined Morehead Crossfit at the advice of a friend.

MC Crossfit WOD

MC Crossfit WOD

The first few days of foundations training I thought that there was no way I’d be able to do the intense exercise.  The owner Timothy Palacios worked with me, pushed me and helped me believe that I could “do it”.  That’s when the “Can Do” attitude kicked in and now 8 months later and 22 pounds lighter at 61 I can (with some modifications in training) keep up with the rest of the Cross Trainers in our box.


As I was running last night in preparation for an upcoming half marathon, I got to thinking about age and how it’s just a number.  Its so easy to give up, turn on the TV and let aging process take over.  My advice to everyone over 50 reading this is to get outside and walk, jog, join a gym, swim, bike and if you are crazy like me find a Crossfit gym. They will work with you at any age.

Starting gate for Volcano Run in El Salvador

Starting gate for Volcano Run in El Salvador

Two weeks ago I ran an 11k Volcano Challenge in El Salvador.  This was a race up, around and down the highest volcano in El Salvador.  It nearly broke me physically, but I kept that “Can DO” attitude and didn’t quit.  I could have never competed in this race if it wasn’t for the training I received at MCCrossfit.

Made it to the Finish Line in 2 hours.

Made it to the Finish Line in 2 hours. 55 out of 274

So yes…age is just a number and if you get in an exercise program and stick with it you can accomplish anything you put your mind too.  I’m not as fast as I used to be and I still have some minor injuries that slow me down, but with that said….quitting is not an option.

Crystal Coast half marathon here I come!


7 comments on ““Can Do” Attitude!

  1. Michael Ehringhaus
    February 7, 2014


    I’m 67, soon to be 68, and could not live happily without regular exercise. Exercise and meditation provide healthy support for smiling.

  2. Patrick Keough
    February 7, 2014

    I totally agree Michael! It keeps me going. We are never too old to keep moving and exercising.

  3. Ozaawaakook
    February 12, 2014

    It is good to see/hear you have embraced the art of aging “Red Dog”, as well as challenging it to the fullest. Keep on Keeping on Old Friend. Be strong Nii-Gii.

  4. Charles Strange
    February 16, 2014

    Excellent, Patrick. I am enthusiastic for you. We are in the same phase of life and facing the same dilemmas with age and fitness. I developed an issue with overuse of my knees with running and since my mother had to get two artificial knees due to arthritis I decided to cut back on running and replace it with bicycling and swimming. I swim pretty hard all winter, breaking it up with walking and I do run occasionally, weather permitting, only on a rubber track. It’s like my dad says….”you gotta keep it moving”. Stay strong and healthy so we can keep arguing on Facebook!!!

  5. Patrick Keough
    February 16, 2014

    Thanks Charles! I also swim laps every morning. It has been the best therapy for my torn shoulder muscle. It’s just a matter of time before I have to give up running. The knees are going BUT I am going to give this 1/2 Marathon a shot in 2 weeks. You stay strong and healthy as well. I really hate to argue politics, but sometimes I can’t help myself. I love this country and hate what is happening to it. I appreciate our friendship and childhood ties.

    February 28, 2014

    Google linked me to this page. Nice reading

  7. Pingback: Personal Transformation….Breaking out of my Comfort Zone | KeO BLoG

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