When I started my fitness and nutrition journey at the age of 60, the only thing I had in mind was to lose weight. Thirty pounds had crept up over the course of just over a decade, and I wanted to do something about it. My body felt so uncomfortable, and I no longer recognized the woman in the mirror. Where did Catherine go? This realization was depressing.
Losing weight in my 20s and 30s was a lot easier. I could cut back on calories for a few days and lose two or three pounds. Not any more. I’ve read that as we age, our metabolism slows down, but over the decades, I’d not watched what I ate, and I only exercised sporadically.
Through a lot of hard work, determination, and dedication over the past several months, I’ve lost close to 25 pounds. The bad news is it took me six months to lose three of those pounds. I’d actually lost seven pounds during that time, but I had gained back four. I was beyond discouraged. Why did I lose so little over those six months?
Then through my daughter I found a workout and nutrition program that guided me along the way. (More about nutrition in another post.) The process hasn’t been easy, but I’ve stuck with the exercises and meal plans and have lost an additional 22 pounds in seven months (on top of the three I’d lost earlier). There were times when I wanted to quit, because I felt that my weight loss was too slow—about a pound a week—but it was a lot faster than losing so little weight the prior six months.
A thrilling by-product is that I can see my muscles again! They haven’t made an appearance in a very long time. I feel strong, and I love that! The workouts include cardio and weight, flexibility, and balance training.
I exercise six or seven days a week. I had to slow down a few months ago when I hurt my back, which unfortunately took a long time to heal, but I couldn’t wait to get back to my workouts! Although, I’ve had to step it down a few notches and stick to lower impact for now.
As we Baby Boomers age, staying active is a must for our health—for both our physical and mental well-being. Just because we’re getting older, it doesn’t mean we should slow down. Exercise actually has little to do with weight loss, maybe about 20%. (The other 80% is from changes in nutrition.) Exercise helps, certainly. But don’t exercise to lose weight. Do it to feel amazing! It’s a great stress reliever. It will build your confidence. It will make you strong. It gives you mental clarity. It puts you in a good mood. Let’s make exercise a daily habit!