We all have excuses not to diet or exercise. You don’t have time. It’s too expensive. You swear you never see results anyways. You’re 73 years old…oh, wait, is that not one of your excuses? Well, for one bodybuilding champion, it could have been. But she didn’t let her age or anything get in the way of her full body transformation.
73-year-old Ernestine Shepherd has the body of a 20 year old. Seriously. She gets up at 3 am every morning to begin her workout. She runs 80 miles a week, two to three hours a day. She lifts weights daily and has even won first place at a bodybuilding competition where she was the only competitor in her age group (see her in action in this video on YouTube).
She has made fitness a way of life, but she didn’t always do that. Ernestine used to never exercise. But like for many people, the alarming approach of bathing suit season kicked her and her sister into action while trying on swimsuits and laughing at one another’s extra jiggle. The two made a pact that day to get in shape. Eventually, that pact turned into working to be the two oldest fitness competitors in the world.
Ernestine’s sister died suddenly of an aneurysm only one year into their training. And Ernestine quit exercising completely to hole up in her home until one friend shook some sense back into her. Ernestine got back on track with training in an attempt to fulfill her promise to her late sister. And did she ever…
She went from being a woman who never exercised to being the Guinness Book of World Record’s oldest female bodybuilder. She is a certified personal trainer and she has modeled and posed for Essence Magazine.
At 73 years old, having spent most of her life never exercising, and carrying the sadness of the loss of a sister, Ernestine makes fitness a priority. What’s your excuse not to?