What about flipping 60? That’s such a frequently asked question.
The question comes up so often that I’m dedicating this short podcast to answer.
And it begs two responses.
First your body, specifically your muscle and your bone.
Second, your mindset.
I’ve worked with many women over 37 years. Privately, in group situations, on campuses, and in private gyms, as well as in their homes, my home, and across the globe from SKYPE calls to Okinawa, Trinidad, Italy, Canada, and Australia to name a few. They’ve been realtors, lawyers, physicians, accountants, faculty, business owners,
Here’s what I’ve found.
What About Flipping 60 Physically?
Physically, the biggest change you will make in your life occurs at about age 50. That’s a rough estimate because the average age of menopause is 51.3. However, some women reach it in their 40s, others not until their late 50s. The hormonal change you make causes a ripple effect in muscle, bone, body composition, metabolism, and heart health risk.
Women in the late stage of perimenopause and early post menopause are at accelerated risk of losing muscle and bone because of the dramatic change in estrogen levels, namely though other hormones are influencing factors too. By the time you’re in your 60’s, your body has adapted to lower estrogen levels (or you may be on hormone replacement) and your losses are slowed.
And Just What About Flipping 60?
So, while the question, what about flipping 60? Often comes from women thinking that maybe this information isn’t appropriate for me because I’m older and need a gentler program, the opposite is true. You are more hardy and sturdy, unless you have a history of sedentary lifestyle and habits that contribute to muscle and bone losses. You actually stand to make more gains and improvements than a woman might just beginning in her early 50s because you are not in that period of accelerated loss.
The biggest obstacle you face, may not be your physical ability, but the mindset around your aging. Thus, flipping 50. It is the flipping of the expectations, the actions, and the outcomes of women who are in the second half of your life.
Flipping 50, 60, and 70 Mindset
Women often but not always accept and settle for aging based on the conditioning and influence they’ve had on their mindset about aging.
No two 60-somethings are alike. No two 70-somethings. I knew a young-at-heart woman friend of my mother’s back in the 70s and early 80s who was a perfect example of proactive aging long before her time. She was using supplements, exercising, and living thoughtfully.
Yet, many women in the 70’s and 80s did not approach their aging proactively. She stood out because she was an anomaly. I remember her distinctly.
We Do Have More Science Than Ever Before
So, of course we can now access so much more information about the reality of what is possible as we age. Examples include Dan Buettner’s Blue Zones research, and organizations like Growing Bolder, International Council on Active Aging, and a growing number of studies showing us the effects of our epigenetics – our lifestyle – on our life and more importantly, “healthspan.” But it’s first and foremost attitude and expectations that change the way you age.
The women who expect to gain weight, who have been conditioned to serve others, and put themselves last, who don’t put exercise or eating – or researching the eating they’re doing – at a high priority gain the most weight. They have the most hot flashes. They are surrounded by people who tell them they look good “for their age” or compared to most women their age they’re doing great. And so they accept it, or at the least it makes it harder to change the way you think about yourself and the way others think about you.
Acceptance is Okay
And by the way, if that is where you are, and what you want, is to be the weight you are and to accept and find peace with it rather than changing it and your health and health risk, I think it’s important that you know, it is your decision.
In fact, I think ideal health is both. Do everything you can based not on your old beliefs and old science but on current science, and an openness to new strategies. Then also accept that there may be a boundary that you are unwilling to cross. If you won’t follow through with some changes and though you want the change, won’t do the daily and weekly changes to get there, there is either a gap between you understanding the science of how that will help, or there is just a “no, I’m not going to do it.”
You are at choice.
I’m here for the women who are willing to change.
For the women who want to know the exercise, and the integrated lifestyle changes they can make and how they will affect their aging.
For the women who are willing to do the deeper inner work and realize that their changing weight loss for years – while getting repeatedly injured and sick – is a sign that the changes they need and weight they need to lose is in their emotions and mindset.
I’m here to help you go through the resistance to change that we all have as human nature. One of the hardest things that we do is change. Even when we choose it. Habit gravity is heavy.
Change Is Hard
Even when we have all the evidence in the world that what we’re doing isn’t working, we continue to do it. Without small actionable steps and building a bridge of tiny new habits.
Resources mentioned in this episode:
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