Eventually, everyone gets to an age at which they feel like they are too old to do something. A seven-year-old might complain that he is too old to be using a car seat. A 13-year-old might suggest that she is too old to need a babysitter. Yet whatever the case is, a person is never too old to live a healthy lifestyle.
Just ask Ernestine “Ernie” Shepherd. Shepherd is an 80-year-old woman who turned her life around at the age of 56 in order to become healthier and more active. Now, she is living a desirable life with her “washboard abs” and “impressive biceps,” according to MSN.
Years ago, when Shepherd was in her late 50s, she was unhappy with the way her swimsuit looked on her and wanted to change. With the support of her sister, she began working out to achieve her desired body image, and she has been extremely successful.
“The Baltimore native was crowned the world’s oldest competitive female bodybuilder in 2011 by the Guinness book of world records,” MSN states. Each day, the 80-year-old bodybuilder wakes up before the sun has risen and walks for 10 miles. She goes to the gym around 7:30 a.m. to teach a workout class until just before noon.
“In addition to her exhausting-sounding fitness routine, Ernie eats five to six small meals a day. These often include oatmeal, a handful of walnuts and crushed pineapple for breakfast, a baked white potato, chicken and asparagus as one of her lunches followed by brown rice, turkey and string beans and then sweet potato, tuna and spinach.”
When her fitness journey began, Shepherd often worked out with her sister as a motivational tool. Unfortunately, her sister unexpectedly passed away a short while later, leaving Shepherd to suffer from depression and panic attacks.
Getting up each day and walking for miles really helped Shepherd cope with the loss of her sister, she admitted to MSN. Eventually, she was able to put aside her sorrow and fulfill her promises to her sister to “continue to motivate others and land a spot in the Guinness book of world records.”
Now, she has become very successful as a motivator for others seeking a healthier lifestyle. “Ernie now travels across the US giving motivational speeches and instructing workout classes while continuing to lead her own local classes which includes participants ranging in ages from 20 to 80. She is also gearing up to run more half marathons.”
According to Eyewitness News, she has been doing even more with her time lately. “Now, Shepherd has won several bodybuilding titles. She encourages people trying to get in shape to stay ‘determined, dedicated and disciplined.’”
Shepherd is clear evidence that a person is never too old to care for themselves and live a healthy lifestyle. Before she decided to turn her life around, she was someone who rarely worked out and enjoyed junk food, according to MSN. Now, 80 years later, she is inspiring many people each day.
Shepherd is proof that not only is it possible to be healthy at all ages, but also, that age is a mentality, and with enough determination, anything is possible.
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