heart shaped pink sparklers photography

SELF | My top wellness tips for women after 50 and it’s not counting calories

Hello my lovelies. I have been thinking about sharing my wellness tips for some time now. Especially, wellness tips for women after 50. I think there is a distinct lack of visibility in the media when it comes to women over 50. And I want to do my little bit to improve the balance.

So here I am sharing my personal wellness tips for women after 50.

So here’s a gratuitous pic of a woman after 50, wearing what some would say is an inappropriate dress, given it is sleeveless. Actually, it’s me at 53, and I’m wearing a dress from the Kmart girls department, that I still had to have taken up as I’m a shortie. I bought the dress for the shirring in the bodice, awwww, love shirring. But it was too long, so it got the chop.

a woman over 50 in a blue dress on a deck looking well
back deck Le

NOT A DOCTOR, JUST A WOMAN OVER 50

Now, REMINDER, not a medical professional. Not a doctor, not a nurse, not a dietician. Just a woman over 50 who has been there, done that and is now making the best of herself and her days, after many years of not making the best of me. I could not call this wellness tips for women over 40, as I wasn’t that well in my 40s. I got fatter, more unfit, less able, and more burdened with health issues in my 40s. I think my body just got itself into a big mess. A hormonal mess, fat mess, hot mess, tired mess, just plain messed up 24/7. You can read about my health issues here.

KNOWLEDGE IS POWER

But now I come to you from a much better space. I have the knowledge gained from three years of research, self-help, trial and error. And as I think knowledge is power, I want to share the power with you.

YOUR PATHWAY TO WELLNESS AFTER 50

Now, as much as I absolutely believe knowledge is power, I am also a firm believer that everyone has their own path to wellness. My path and how I walk it can be shared with you, but you still need to do the work to find your own pathway.

My way is not right, your way is not wrong.

You do you and I will do me. But that doesn’t stop us from sharing, caring and growing alongside each other does it. Growing emotionally, mentally and holistically, not growing fatter and more unwell.

To prove a point, this is where I’ve been and this is where I am now. BOOYA!

SEVEN WELLNESS TIPS FOR WOMEN AFTER 50

So, here are my top wellness tips for women after 50. Enjoy!

Tip #01 EAT RIGHT

Now, you just knew this would be a thing. How can we function well if we are not fueled right? For me, this means low carb keto. After more than three decades of other diets, weight loss plans, health kicks and more, I am settled and committed to low carb keto. With a side order of intermittent fasting, more on that later.

I have tried so many ways to manage my weight, including…

  • not eating meat – made my iron levels drop so I was always tired
  • I have lived on salads – always hungry, never satisfied – stayed hangry for weeks
  • been a shake meal replacement devotee – grossed me out after two weeks, lost weight, but all came back within days
  • flirted with Atkins – made me feel yuk in the tummy, premade food tasted like cardboard
  • done low fat – made me fatter and fatter
  • ate for my blood type – too hard, too confusing
  • been a Jenny Craig girl – too expensive

None of this worked for me, not the way low carb keto has. Now I am a low carb lover, a high good fats consumer and I am rocking it. Down past my goal weight and not turning back. Best yet my body is doing this without huge physical activity (more on that soon) from me.

I seem to be finding my natural weight equilibrium for the first time in forever.

My farewell to fat story is here. Low carb keto works for me as I am sustained, I am satisfied, I can eat lots of things I love, my body runs on fat now, not carbs, I am energised in a way I have never felt before. Not even in my 20s.

Keen to explore low carb keto …. Excellent. I have a 14 day plan to prepare for going low carb keto here. It has all the basics. Seven actions to take, seven mindset days to get your big ole brain on board. Then there is the 21 day program to Kick Start Keto. If you are keen, give it a go. I’m here as your support gal, ask me any questions.

Whatever you decide to do food wise, just know that nobody runs well on sugar, highly processed foods and nutrient poor choices. This is exasperated after 50 given all the hormonal hoo-ha that is rampaging through your system. What worked food wise in your 30s, won’t necessarily serve you in your 50s.

Tip #02 MOVE RIGHT

A bit like the diet merry-go-round I was on, is the exercise treadmill. So much is said about exercise, so much advice is out there. Each season it seems there is a new exercise fad. And it’s mostly about flogging yourself to fatigue. I have done aerobics, Jazzercise, Les Mills, aqua aerobics, tai chi, yoga, HIT, boxing, running, step classes, weights, stair machines, biking, boot camps and programs found online.

I do believe that you want to move your body, if you want to use your body for years to come. But finding the right exercise for you after 50 is important. No longer 24, 34 or even 44, so just be mindful of overexertion. Exercise is a personal preference. I find yoga and tai chi boring. I loved boxing, but it made me ache. I loved running in my 30s but gave it away with knee issues.

I now walk up a hill with stairs, about 200 of them, most morning as part of my 30-40 minute walk. I have to get up at 5.30am to do this as a) it’s the only time I have to fit it in b) it’s too hot after 7am here in summer. But I love it. I take my iPhone and do a fair whack of suburban photography while I walk. I take my husband and dog too, but it’s the photography I really love. Then, I find a freebie channel on YouTube and do an eight to ten minute site specific exercise set. Like, for my arms or abs. That is it. Zero cost.

My convenience. My movement. My choice.

Make a choice to suit yourself. Make a choice that brings you joy. Do it for the physical wellness, do it for the mental benefits, do it because you matter. I delegated the vacuuming and doing their own washing to the teenaged kids so I could find time for me. Put you at the top of the pile, not under the laundry pile. Make movement your me-time. It can be cheaper than a mani and of greater value to you than a pedi.

Tip #03 TAKE A BREAK FROM ALCOHOL (and maybe caffeine too)

So I had to leave this till now, as if I’d made it number one you might have left without reading a thing. Now I am hoping you will read on. After 50, if you find things all out of whack, from your weight to your sleep, to your hair and skin, then lets remove some of the clutter from your holistic wellness. I can hear you now … some of you are saying … it’s not a problem for me. And I am sure you are right. But caffeine is a stimulant and alcohol is a depressant and your body is likely to be going thru a huge hormonal upsurge of crazy, so lets just cut the variables, caffeine and alcohol, out of the equation. Clean the field and give alcohol a swerve and caffiene the flick.

When you are eating right and moving to bring you joy, then just go the next step and drop caffeine and alcohol from the scene. You will sleep better, you will wake up refreshed, you will be more in tune with you.

Switch out to decaf, try the 101 no sugar flavoured carbonated drinks out there. Be the queen of the collegan smoothies. Dropping out alcohol will give your liver a chance to freshen up.

Show your liver some love and let it be free from alcohol. You know it makes sense.

If you can’t find room in your life to drop caffeine and alcohol, even for say three months or until you find your wellness, then maybe it is more of a problem than you think. My rationale is if caffeine and alcohol don’t matter to you, then make giving up caffeine and alcohol a matter of choice. Your body will say thankyou.

Tip #04 LEARN TO SAY NO

Like the Meghan Trainor song ...

Nah to the ah to the, no, no, no
My name is no
My sign is no
My number is no
You need to let it go
You need to let it go
Need to let it go
Nah to the ah to the, no, no, no

Why do we need to learn to say no? Because time is the one commodity that you cannot purchase more of. Your time matters. Time to eat right, move for joy, be in your space, doing your thing. Life saps your energy, no more so as your kids hit their teens, your parents age, your work demands more, your spouse needs more of you and the dog won’t feed itself. Not to even mention stupid COVID19.

It’s time now to reclaim some hours for you, and if not now, then when? When you’re dead won’t work, and just remember the upheaval you are working thru, hormonally speaking. Saying no to needless activity is a gift only you can give yourself. Now is the time to assert yourself, find your voice and say with love, thanks but no thanks.

I firmly believe this is the greatest kindness you can show yourself.

le at the beach at sunrise
Me being kind to myself, on a beach at sunrise by myself

If you need more on why saying NO is necessary, then I wrote about it here. In times of chaos, like now, the word on your lips should be no. I’m dead set serious about this. I see women over 50 everywhere bearing the burdens of massive responsibility. And I mean all kinds of responsibility. From caring for kids and an extended family, to shopping and meal prep and even all the domestic drama of where are the car keys/ bus pass/school tie and more. It’s overwhelm at every level. It’s little wonder as to why we eat/drink/self medicate to survive. But surviving is no longer enough, we want wellness, joy and happiness of our own making, of our own design, along our own pathway.

and breathe neon sign on tre
say no and breathe easier

Tip #05 SLEEP

Did you know that without enough sleep your body won’t let you loose weight? Being without enough sleep is like putting your body in a constant state of stress. Stress is a self fulfilling prophecy of doom. Too tired to think, eat the sugar donut. Tired at 3.00pm, drink coffee. Worn to a frazzled at 6.00pm, grab a glass of wine to get thru the dinner drama. Without enough sleep you are simply cheating yourself out of life.

You are not enriching your life, you are depriving yourself.

person lying on white mattress

One of the best things I did was set sleep times on my Fitbit. I now get a friendly little alert at 9.30pm saying … time to get ready for sleep. I love it. It’s like my personal little carer giving me virtual nudge to be nice to myself. Getting enough sleep was a game changer for me. Maybe it will for you too.

Tip #06 IF

IF is intermittent fasting. It is simply a pattern of eating and not eating, repeated. For me I finish eating at around 7.00pm and then eat again after 11.00am. BOOM! A 16 hour fast each and every day. And most of it done while I’m asleep. This one thing gives my body such a respite, such relief, such a head start on the day. It’s for me, and I’m for IF. It was a game changer for me.

IF in combination with low carb keto is even causing my waddle (you know the neck thing) to reduce … I mean really. But one of the real IF gifts for me is taking the focus off food. I just don’t clutter my morning with food related issues. It’s like I have capacity back in my morning to do other things. I do not have to eat breakfast or morning tea.

The clock nor convention nor obligation no longer decide for me that it is time to eat. I do. It’s uplifting and freeing.

Want to give IF a go, then see my beginner guides and more info here, guide one and guide two. Plus here is a wee video on why I love IF so much. It’s the combination of disciple, simplicity and results that make me an IF fangirl. Especially for women after 50. It’s like we can find a hidden door to a better place thru just eating less often. You can still eat the same amount if you want, just not a constant snack-a-thon. It’s genius! Thomas Delauer on YouTube is my go to fasting guru and he has some great stuff especially designed for women. Like this one here.

Intermittent fasting can be done 101 ways. Everyday, once a week, for 16 hours or for 20 hours, with one meal, called OMAD (one meal a day) or with three meals a day. It’s your call. You decide what works for you.

Tip #07 MINDSET MATTERS TO WELLNESS AFTER 50

Truth be told, mindset matters at any age. But after 50 a woman can doubt herself. Not as young, not as sexy, not as desirable, not a valued commodity anymore. Not needed. Society says all this thru a constant barrage of crap. All this grey fluff of negativity can seep into your subconscious and make an emotional mess along with the hormonal mess you are already bearing.

So be conscious. Find your sense of self. Understand a few home truths. With age comes experience, the building blocks of wisdom.

Wisdom is grand, wisdom is priceless.

Wisdom is yours. Wisdom brings a sweet release from giving a flying f#ck about what your dad thinks, what your brother says, what your boss tells you and what people in general have to say about you or any topic. Let people’s expectations of you be like a fried egg on a Teflon frypan, it won’t stick. You be Teflon and let the fried egg of expectations slip away into the trash can of don’t give a toss. It’s so liberating!

That’s easy to say right. Sometimes not as easy to achieve. So here are three practical approaches to improving your mindset.

Own your own life. Make your own choices. After 50 you have the ability to ensure that your choices serve you. This is about saying no, it’s about being true to self, it’s about dropping the detritus of expectation and picking up the posy of sweet blooms that matter to you.

One way to support this is to find a tribe that looks and feels like you. In the online world, this is easier than ever before. There is literally a support group for every niche of humanity. Want to hang with women over 50 who fast, there is a group for that. Want to be surrounded by women who craft paper masterpieces, there’s a group for that. Want to learn how to live with a loved one with dementia, there’s a group for that too. Let google be your guide and find your tribe. Hell, find three or five tribes, variety is the spice of life.

Now, my final mindset share is about your why. Especially important if you feel thrown away, or irrelevant, or not needed. Finding your why will get you out of bed each day. Finding your why will help you find your way. There are 101 worthy, meaningful whys to engage with. A bit like a tribe, but a little more centred on giving, sharing and growing.

Volunteer at the centre for our homeless, be a mentor to a teen in trouble, teach interview skills to survivors of domestic violence, support your adult daughter thru her early parenting years in a way your mum could not for you. Foster kids, wildlife, guide dog puppies or feral cats. There is a smorgasbord of choice. Just pick something and dive in. Or pick you as your why. I did. I picked me as my project and two years later I have rebuilt myself from the inside out. Such a satisfying experience. I thoroughly recommend it.

Whatever you choose, find your why and centre yourself around it. The contribution to your wellness will be massive and after 50 will seem like the golden age of self-generated happiness and joy, not a slow slide into old age and limited options and an acceptance of less than optimum health.

woman leaning on white concrete surface beside swimming pool during daytime

I hope something resonates with you. Be sure to share your ideas in the comments or email me, as sharing demonstrates caring. Thanks for being here. Big squeeze Le xox

For your daily dose of low carb, keto + IF love, come join us at Keto Queens Unite! It’s a sweet, non-judgemental place to share and learn about low carb, keto + IF. You would be most welcome.

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