Last week I wrote some posts about the meaning of Easter. I hope you found them helpful. As we begin another week, I thought I would start with a post to motivate you to get started on a fitness program. You may have thought about it but never plucked up the courage to do it . If you are telling yourself you are too old or too sick to start a fitness routine, I’m here to tell you that’s a myth.
A few years ago, I came across an article about an 80-year-old female bodybuilder named Ernestine Shepherd. As I read with amazement, I discovered that Ernestine had not always been a fitness buff. She started working out at the age of 56 after her sister Velvet encouraged her that they should both get in shape. Ernie, as she is called, was not very enthusiastic about lifting weights because she’d heard that doing so would make her look like a man.
But, spurred on by her sister, Ernie began working out with her. Unfortunately, Velvet later suffered a brain aneurysm and died. Before her death, Velvet made Ernie promise that she would motivate others and land a spot in the Guinness Book of World Records. She fulfilled the latter promise in 2011 and she continues to motivate others today. Ernie is deeply religious and thanks God everyday for what He has helped her accomplish.
Ernie lives by a very exacting routine—getting four hours sleep at nights, waking at 2. 30 a.m. to take a 10-mile walk then going to the gym to work out and teach classes. It makes me feel exhausted just thinking about it. However, Ernie advises that you don’t do what she does if you’re now starting out. According to the Independent, Ernie says, “If your doctor says yes then start with a walking programme because it is very good for you. Don’t try to do 10 miles when you first start, take it slowly. Then go to a gym, start lifting light weights and have someone around who knows about fitness who can guide you along safely so you don’t get injured.”
Ernie is now 84 and still active but no longer a bodybuilder. But her story still inspires those who hear it. You may have no desire to be another Ernie (I don’t), but you can embark on a fitness routine that is in keeping with your doctor’s advice and one that works for you. Ernie’s sister motivated her to get started, and now I’m trying to motivate you.
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