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Gorgeous 75 Year-old Body Building Grandma

When she was younger, she was "too prissy to be athletic."  Ernestine Shepherd started body-building at 71.  At 75, she's still at it and she's teaching others at her Methodist church.  "This is my ministry," she says on a BBC tape, (drawn to my attention by Alias Reader on  Now Ms. Shepherd leads classes  at church and sets an example: "health, happiness, and prosperity." 

She also runs about 10 miles every morning. 

I'm all in favor of health — and long life.  But more important, she looks terrific!

I'm delighted to know it's physically possible to look as radiantly ageless and toned as Ms. Shepherd — even though I'm not going to put in the hours she does.

Her decision to get active again came after her sister's death, when she talked with her sister in a dream.  Well, Miss Ernie, as she's often called, is going to be my "sister in a dream."

I've been just a tad slack about exercise for the past two weeks.  Tonight after work– I hereby swear —  will be different.  I'll simply repeat my new mantra: Remember Miss Ernie — and grab my jumprope and go!

[youtube /kSm9LT0SPXk]

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  • June 11, 2012 at 2:59 pm Reply

    I couldn't (wouldn't) run 100 feet. She looks good, but she is too muscular for my taste. 

    • June 11, 2012 at 4:40 pm Reply

      I’m going to hold back from getting quite that muscular too, Kenju. And I just discovered that I’ve posted not only Miss Ernie’s video, but I’m channeling a bunch of body-builders.

  • June 12, 2012 at 5:10 am Reply

    JB showed me a story and longer video on her last year. I was and am amazed but mostly inspired. I wish I'd never been programmed to believe that 40 is over the hill and other such nonsense. I think I put more psychic energy into fighting notions of age/death than I put toward taking care of myself in more constructive ways. As usual, thanks for the post, Peggy! 

    • June 12, 2012 at 7:25 am Reply

      I got a message from someone on Twitter who said she’d actually started seriously working out after seeing a Miss Ernie video last year. Whatever you’re doing seems to be working quite well, Jodi.

  • June 12, 2012 at 6:58 am Reply

    I have a sixty year old friend who runs marathons and looks great.  Very inspiring.  I do my yoga every day, but really need more aerobic exercise.  Just have to work it into my busy schedule…

    • June 12, 2012 at 7:23 am Reply

      Yoga every day is pretty impressive to me. I’ve come to realize that I like to look at pictures of yoga and read about de-cluttering. Then those items feel taken care of.

  • Stephanie
    June 12, 2012 at 1:42 pm Reply

    I'm not crazy about exercising, but I'm less crazy about the fact that I look & feel dumpy all the time. Since I saw Ernestine's story I have started working out – nothing outrageous: 15 min. warm ups with any of 3 videoes, 25 minute arms, abs, leg, and/or butt sessions, 5 minute cool downs. Sunday a-m, I've started to walk a mile to work out on equipment at a local park and I'm looking for a pool to flail around in. When I turned 50, I did experience that 'invisible' thing that happens to women and this makes me feel like I'm not buying into it.

    • June 12, 2012 at 1:46 pm Reply

      I think you’re doing a lot, Stephanie. And I’ll bet Miss Ernie would be proud.

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