92-year-old eats sweets almost every day and still a record breaker

91-year-old Chestnut Hill woman smashed the world record for her age in the 400-meter dash Saturday, USA Track & Field New England said.

Diane Hoffman, who turned 92 this week, broke one world record and two national records at the 2019 USATF New England Open and Masters Outdoor Track and Field Championships in Worcester last weekend.

“I eat candy, cookies, and ice cream almost every day, so moving, period, whether it’s gardening or shoveling snow, or whatever you’re doing, you should be active, because I’m certainly not a runner,” Hoffman said.

Hoffman’s son and grandson signed her up to compete because she moved faster than them when they took a walk one day, she said.

Hoffman set three records for female runners between 90 and 94 years old, according to USATF. She ran the 400-meter dash in two minutes and 44.25 seconds, besting the previous world record by over two seconds. Hoffman set the national record for the 200-meter dash, running it in 56.33 seconds. She took 24.19 seconds to sprint 100 meters, which beat her previous national record of 24.22 seconds.

Hoffman said the crowd went wild for her. She stood out as the oldest woman on the track by 30 years.

Hoffman, a former dancer, is an accomplished tennis player. She was inducted into the US Tennis Association’s New England Hall of Fame in 2011. Hoffman plays tennis four or five times a week and tried to squeeze in some running training while she played.

“I ran a few times on the grass once or twice a week, just a little bit to run up a few courts,” Hoffman said. “I had some good advice. People said stretch and do this and that.”

Hoffman said she will run the race next year if her son wants her to and she is “still on this side of the grass.”

“I’m very blessed. The good Lord gave me legs and good health. What can I say?” she said.