“We don’t stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.”
George Bernard Shaw
I worked as a high-flying sales executive in the City for many years, travelling between London, New York and Miami and enjoying the challenge of the fast-paced, high-pressured lifestyle. My passion and enthusiasm drove me to be the best; I was the stereotypical driven career woman who climbs the ladder all the way up, but where was I going? The Finance industry never turned me on and I was way too feisty to go along with all the corporate politics. Plus, I was killing myself slowly with the unhealthy City lifestyle – a sandwich at my desk and the rest of my calories made up of multiple vodkas in the evening socialising with colleagues, bitching about management to unwind. That, followed by a good dose of stress, well, let’s just say it doesn’t matter how much money you earn if you are not going to be around to enjoy it.
It might sound a bit clichéd, but life for me really did change at 40, it felt like I seized the opportunity of a new beginning – proving that age is just a number. What next? I had a passion for health and fitness which had started a few years before thanks to many motivational sessions with my Personal Trainer. With his help, I quit the fags and binned the yoyo diets. Then I took it a step further: I wanted to be like the person who had so positively inspired me so I qualified as a Personal Trainer. This made me feel I was moving closer to where I wanted to be but I still didn’t feel fulfilled. I felt the need to use my business brain again. Besides, the jogging bottoms and trainers were doing nothing for my glamorous side and sense of style. Let’s face it, I missed the high heels!
Being an Entrepreneur
I launched a brand of glamorous fitness wear for women. The first season was very successful amongst the trendy young women taking inspiration from our Ambassadors, glamorous personalities in the industry. Times got tough though as my savings were beginning to run out. The stress of working 24/7 made corporate life look like a walk in the park, and I wasn’t even getting paid for it! Reality hit me hard one morning when I woke up and realised that my leap of faith had taken a toll on my relationship. The trips to the gym had become a distant memory and instead of getting healthier I was getting fatter! Things had to change and quickly too! After months of sleepless nights and deliberating over investment on the table, I reluctantly decided to sell my shares in the business.
Bikini Body Builder
They say it’s never too late to live your dreams, so in July 2015, I entered my first bikini body building show, the Miami Pro European championships. If I’m really honest, it was about proving something to myself: I was facing my body issues bang on, some would say in an extreme manner. I’ve never liked my body, so putting it in a skimpy bikini in front of a huge arena of people to be judged was bloody scary, not to mention the fact that I had to pose whilst wearing high heels. In my early forties, I was up against women much younger than me. Was I too old to do this? Would I be laughed off?
Despite being a hard core gym fanatic, I still had a lot of work to do to be stage ready for the competition. A serious amount of muscle building and weight lifting goes into the physique, as well as on point nutrition. But I was determined. I radically changed my diet (the alcohol part was a killer), learned how to pre-cook and plan my meals, pose professionally (pouty selfies are nothing in comparison).
Age is just a number
Unfortunately, I didn’t win the competition, but I demonstrated that it doesn’t matter what age you are, you can still look and feel amazing, powerful and strong. This is just the beginning as from now on I’m going to share some of the training and nutrition knowledge that I have learnt along the way and that has truly transformed my eating habits and the way I think of food.
I’ll share with you the life-changing secrets to a great body that you aren’t told by the media. Don’t worry, it’s not rocket science!
I hope to inspire you to follow your passion and lead a more rewarding life full of vitality by being healthy, fit and strong, and I challenge you to prove that age is just a number!