Need some inspiration today? Discover the transformative power of joyful fitness as Brandy, at age 49, overcomes mobility issues, sheds 60 pounds, and embarks on exhilarating adventures, proving that it's never too late to find strength, happiness, and a zest for life at 50!
At age 49, amid the Covid pandemic and as my 15-year marriage ended, I was feeling uncomfortable in my body and having serious mobility issues. That is when I found new motivation for change that has made all the difference. Over the last 9 months I have lost over 60 pounds, but more importantly I have gained strength and mobility that has profoundly increased my quality of life.
My mindset shift? Quite simply I stopped thinking about taking care of my body as something I do for others and began to see how it’s really about adding joy to my own life.
Taking care of my body had to start with joyfully loving my body. Before I lost any weight, I loved my beautifull body. I did not make the changes specifically to change the way my body looks, or to hit a magic number on the scale.
What did trouble me was that with the extra weight I had gained over the years, I was having worsening mobility issues. I am a person who loves adventure- hiking, backpacking, biking, boating, swimming, playing with my very active 9-year-old. I found that I was starting to write things off in my life, “I don’t ski anymore,” “I can’t run,” “That hike is too long/steep for me”
As my 50th birthday was coming up I reflected on my life and I what I wanted in it for the next 50 years. I knew I wanted to be able to do these activities safely for many more years. I want to have a lot more fun with my body in this lifetime!
My key was to begin setting goals around fun, joy, and connection to others. With my 50th birthday coming up I set a goal around something totally fun- My birthday party! I decided that for my 50th birthday I would hike from my house in Ashland to the top of Mount Ashland.
So last fall I began planning, examining my diet, hiking in the Ashland watershed a lot more, and taking the super fun muscle building Trail Fit classes from Tamara Smith. It was all so fun and focused on this birthday adventure. I included as many friends that wanted to join in “birthday training hikes” and found that the more fit I became the more fun movement was!
Then on June 23rd, I gathered friends and hiked the nearly 15 miles and 5000 vertical feet totally comfortably -- I wasn’t even sore the next morning.
Thanks to my friends there was also a spaghetti and chocolate cake fest on the mountain when we finished. I am still enjoying the delightful feelings from accomplishing this super fun goal.
My 50th was my favorite birthday ever! Setting these joyful and fun goals is like giving myself a gift-
Next goal? Celebrating another friend’s 50th birthday with a multiday run on the Rogue River Trail!
Move with joy!!