David loved Little Debbie snack cakes (fudge rounds to be exact) and bacon and beer and butter. His motto was always, “If you’re going to eat; eat well; if you’re going to live, live well”. Unfortunately, his version of eating well, didn’t correlate with his motto of living well. His “eating well” had nothing to do with wellness at all.
David was very fit (although overweight), he just wasn’t healthy. Having always been extremely active (an avid cyclist with 3 centuries under his belt, hiking, kayaking, camping, boot camp classes and spin classes) he assumed, like most people, that he would remain healthy as a result. Unfortunately, that was not the case. A lifetime of “eating well” caught up with him by the time he turned 50. At 50, he was diagnosed with pre-hypertension and pre-diabetes, as well as chronic and intense low back pain. This proves the point: you can’t outrun a poor diet. Your diet will be the life or death of you, no matter how active you are.
It was at this point he decided he needed to make a change. With a customized meal plan designed specifically for him, his health issues and his lifestyle, he started seeing changes. He stopped spin classes and started weight training and high intensity interval training. After a year of healthy eating, he no longer had any of his prior health issues. His energy and mood improved, his low back pain ceased to exist and he started shedding fat.
Much to his surprise, he found he was still eating “well” and eating foods he enjoyed. It wasn’t a punishment to eat healthfully and mindfully: the foods he began eating were not the “diet” foods everyone bemoans. It wasn’t torture; it was sustainable and enjoyable. And he was still allowed to “cheat” once a week, and yet continued to lose fat.
Now at the age of 54, he is almost unrecognizable. He is often mistaken for someone much younger. It’s amazing what becoming healthy can do for you and did for David. He has discovered the fountain of youth.
Now he truly is eating well and living well.
If this is 50 (54) I’ll take it. Every single time.
Well, to be fair - I turned 50 eight months ago - but who's counting?
I have been reluctant to use me as an example of “This is 50”. But, my husband convinced me I should. Age is not an excuse or a reason to not be healthy, happy and fit.
I competed this fall in the Figure Masters 50+ class at two competitions. I have to tell you, they don't make 50 year olds like they used to. No polyester-wearing, frumpy moms and grandmas up on that stage! (Oh, we're definitely moms and grandmas - just not frumpy.)
Every single one of these ladies is 50 and over!
Recently, in a Facebook message, I shared a photo with a group of ladies of my transformation. My transformation wasn't typical in that I didn’t lose a massive amount of weight. I was skinny (well, skinny fat) unhealthy, and undernourished. I kept my caloric intake at 1,000-1,200 calories per day. Ridiculous. Oh, and cardio. All the cardio all the time! And smoked – heavily for a very long time.
I was depressed and on anti-anxiety medication. The year preceding my journey into weight lifting was one tragedy after another. My husband and I lost our home to a landslide (which the insurance company denied); my dad was on life support and we lost him at the age of 66, I was having a very difficult time with one of my children, and then lost my job as a result of all of the above.
Then I began weight training on a lark. I was still teaching Zumba, but added weight lifting. Then I started eating to fuel my body and stopped the extremely restrictive diet.
I was 46 years old when I started weight training and 47 when entered my first competition. That began a journey I never would have anticipated. I loved how I felt, was amazed that I could transform my body and mind at this age.
Now – at 50 years old, I compete in figure and have hopes (and maybe plans) to compete at Nationals next year. I have taught boot camps, group fitness classes, done personal training, designed meal plans for people close to me, taught Zumba, and created a popular fitness class (HIIT Hop®) that now has a US trademark.
Four years ago, I never would have imagined this would be the life my husband and I would be living. I love the lifestyle and the changes it has brought to me, personally, and for me and my husband together.
No excuses – age is nothing but another number – nothing more/nothing less.
We hear and see a lot of stories of significant weight loss. But what about the inactive, thin women who aren't in shape or fit -- they're just thin with a poor diet?
Virginia turned 50 last year. She had always been small and never worked out. She lived on Twinkies, doughnuts, and whatever junk food was handy. She drank 6 to 8 regular Cokes a day and spent her time supporting her two active and athletic children. Her son played every sport, while her daughter was a collegiate gymnast.
Virginia was a typical mother who was completely caught up in her children's lives and activities. Once those came to an end, like so many moms, she found herself lost. She was introduced to bikini competitions and fortunately, with the support of her children, decided to give it a try. She competed in her first show in November of 2015 and placed 2nd.
She plans on continuing her newfound lifestyle and competing. Not only that, her daughter will be on the competition stage with her this month (April, 2016).
How lucky to have such support and encouragement from family. To compete with the daughter she supported all those years is reward enough.
She plans to continue competing and improving. Well done Virginia --- with your kids and yourself.
This campaign is titled "This is 50". This is not about being 50. This is a forum to show you can be fit and healthy at any age. 30, 40, 50, 60 - 100.
I'd like you to meet Debra. Debra is not 50. She is 59. Debra did her first competition in November 2015. She has fibromyalgia and rheumatoid arthritis. She is doing another competition in May or August of 2016. She is living proof that a fit, healthy lifestyle will keep you young and healthy. She is an inspiration for any age. She is proof that you can overcome your obstacles.
Well done Debra. Keep inspiring!
Deanna is 53 years old. She competed in Masters Bikini at the Arnold Amateurs in Columbus in March, 2016. She has been competing for a year and a half after losing 48 pounds. Oh, she also has an artificial hip and pins in her hip!
No excuses ... Age is a number - nothing more
Michele is 51 years old. Three years ago, she weighed over 190 pounds and was out of shape. Today, she is now a competitor and living proof that it can be done.
I turned 50 this month. I decided months ago, I wanted to do something special for my birthday. I want to show people of all ages that your age does not prevent you from being healthy, fit and happy. No matter your age, your genetics, your history, you can be well, healthy and no dream is unattainable.
I asked a number of people of all ages to share their story and their photos. In honor of all of these inspiring people, I would like to share their journey.
Stay tuned as I share each lovely person's story.