Hello and welcome! Lots of women land here looking for inspiration for how to get fit and healthy in midlife. You are in the right place! I’ve been on a mission to do the same since 2012. I write about what works and give my community research-based tools and resources so that they can start thriving, too. Join my community to get even more support, useful resources like this post, and other tools to feel your best. When you join you’ll get instant member-only access to the Guide to Thrive, which gives 5 research-based tips to get started feeling your best in all parts of your life fast. It also includes a quick action list with easy links to resources. You’re going to love it.
This is a recurring series chronicling my experiment with the scientifically backed prescription for getting functionally younger this year. This post contains affiliate links.
younger this year update #6
What’s happened after six months of trying to work out for 60 minutes, 6 days a week; with 2 days of strength training. I’ve hit that goal pretty consistently for the past 6 months; I’d say 85% of the time.
- There is no question that I’m shrinking:
-2″ from thighs
-3+” from my lower abdomen
-2″ from my waist
-1.5″ from my ribcage
Went from a 36DD bra to a 34C (a loss of over 2″)
-1″ from my upper arms
-1″ from my neck!
- 16 pounds lost since January 2014
Month 6 is about metamorphosis:
I’ve now given away 4 big shopping bags of clothes. Every single item of clothing left in my closet fits again. When I wake up in the morning I feel strong and like my former self of 20 years ago. Really! I love the feeling of getting in my cardio for the day. I love the feeling of being able to hit yoga arm balances that I simple couldn’t manage at 16 pounds heavier.
The biggest difference, though, and the most important is that at 6 months in, the positive benefits of choosing – day after day – to carve out a life of intention; an intention to treat my body as a temple – and to live a happy life are part of my every waking moment. I no longer am striving to become a better vision of myself, I already feel like that’s happened. I feel like I have reserves of power and stamina that are both mental and physical. I feel happier than I have in a long time.
a look back
I look back on photos of myself last year prior to this lifestyle change and I remember feeling very discontent. It was a vague feeling, so I floundered about for many months until I hurt my back. In those moments of severe pain; stuck on the couch I wanted to feel like my body had let me down. But then came a quiet voice that called me out on my own bullshit. I call it the big girl voice; and it pointed out that I had allowed my body to decay, atrophy, and prematurely age. I was overeating and drinking too much wine. I had a choice to accept that consequence of a sedentary lifestyle (still walking 10,000 steps a day, mind you) or try something different. That was back in August of 2013. I began to work out on September 5, and haven’t stopped since. I began the Younger Next Year prescription of one hour of cardio a day with two days of strength training in January. Ten months later the difference really shows in my face.
resources & tips
- The book that my protocol is based on is Younger Next Year: Live Strong, Fit, and Sexy Until You’re 80 and Beyond, and the companion book for women called Younger Next Year for Women. This exercise and lifestyle prescription is scientifically proven to stave off 70% of the normal decay (weakness, sore joints, muscle apathy), and…eliminate over 50% of all illness and potential injuries related to aging.
- Find a friend or group to get accountable with. I joined the Tone It Up team. Karena & Katrina feel like my personal trainers. I use their toning and cardio videos regularly — all free!
- Tone It Up is a great network of Big Girls who check in with their workouts on Instagram and in the Tone It Up Community. This kept me accountable, gave me a sense of being part of a greater community and I’ve met some fantastic women. We all support each other.
- Diversify: I also do Zumba and Spinning at my local gym; and yoga at my local studio.
- My dogs keep me walking. Every Damn. Day.
- I love running again and have discovered trail running is my favorite place to get in my cardio.
- I eat according to the Tone It Up nutrition plan, which costs a one-time fee, but provides so many recipes and a solid nutritional philosophy of eating delicious fresh and healthy foods with a non-dieting, and non-deprivation approach. This is a lifestyle of eating. I highly recommend it! Full disclosure – I have no affiliation with Tone It Up!
- I continue to use and love my Fitbit personal activity tracker. I try to get in 12k steps daily and seeing the leaderboard of other users is incredibly motivating. Fitbit users add me to your friend list here. I love and recommend the Fitbit Charge2 or the Blaze. With technology products, you want to be sure you can get the ability to return or get a new Fitbit in case something happens, which is why I always recommend you purchase through these links at Fitbit.com instead of retail stores because you getFree shipping on $50+45-day money back guarantee31 year limited warranty
p.s. Let’s connect and inspire over on Instagram with daily check-ins. You can find me @biggirllifeblog & on snapchat @hserody OR just snap this