'At Age 68, I'm in the Best Shape of My Life!'


By: , SparkPeople Blogger
5/19/2013 6:00 AM   :  133 comments   :  21,155 Views

Carol Reinhard (CAROLJEAN64)
Weight Lost: 57 pounds
Hometown: West Des Moines, IA
Occupation: Retired

I was in the midst of therapy for depression.  I broke my leg, the complications from which left me inactive for several months. I gained weight as a shield as I dealt with complex and frightening issues in therapy. I had little energy.  I did not feel attractive to my husband and felt like a grandmother to almost anyone more than 10 years younger than me. I didn't want to be old when I knew I wasn't.  I somehow inherently knew that combining good eating and physical activity was what I needed to complete the road to good emotional, physical and mental health that I started in therapy.

I made some great progress in therapy and decided to give my husband my weight loss goals as a birthday gift with the goal of being at my wedding weight by our 38th wedding anniversary eight months later.  I made it with one day to spare. My first week I lost six pounds, and I gained only one week. I lost about 1.75 pounds per week. 

Keeping a food journal has been so important in maintaining my weight.  For me, it was all about portion control, portion control, portion control. 

Interestingly enough, I came to SparkPeople at my goal weight.  However, the maintenance part was not going well.  I broke another leg and worked with a personal trainer after I recovered to drop the almost 20 pounds. I had re-gained.  I was looking for a site to track my food and activity and I found so much more! I especially enjoyed the support from the Dealing with Depression Team and the Yoga Lovers team.  I began yoga just a couple months after I reached goal weight.  I now teach it and practice yoga an hour per day almost daily.  I am currently working toward attaining handstand and backbend in my yoga practice.

I am incredibly inspired by my students in a chair yoga class that I teach at a retirement community.  They are all in their 80s and 90s and never miss a class!  My personal goals include maintaining my weight loss, continuing to improve my physical conditioning and enjoying retirement to the fullest. I am almost 68 years old and I know I am in the best shape of my life!

Have you lost weight and kept it off using SparkPeople.com? We'd love to share your story. Email us: sparkpeoplesuccess (at) gmail (dot) com

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  • 83
    Wow - what an inspiration you are! I am not doing too bad at keeping below my goal weight but I am desperate to get more supple and get rid of the pain from what has been diagnosed as arthritis in my left know - but here you are after having broken legs and aiming for handstands and backbends - oh I am IN .. that is what I want too ! - 5/20/2013   4:07:59 PM
  • 82
    Woo Hoo! Great success! - 5/20/2013   3:57:21 PM
  • 81
    Wow! And great job thank you for sharing! - 5/20/2013   3:25:12 PM
    I too loved your story and accomplishments. I am 67 and go to the gym everyday. The yoga classes there are always for a higher form of yoga. They have a beginners class but it is on Sat. which is the only day I don't attend. I wish I knew how to get into a free class. I do take pilates and love that class. Keep up the wonderful work you do and best of luck. - 5/20/2013   3:04:13 PM
    Your story is very encouraging! I am at the same age and have lost just enough weight so far to be under your beginning weight, so I can see my journey. Knowing how much daily exercise helps you is a great reminder for me too. - 5/20/2013   2:25:44 PM
  • 78
    Very inspirational! Thanks for sharing and a big congratulations! - 5/20/2013   1:53:21 PM
  • 77
    Thank you for sharing such a wonderful story! Spark On! - 5/20/2013   1:39:47 PM
  • DCGAL9
    Congrats you look great. Thanks for letting us all know age is just a number. :-) - 5/20/2013   12:56:56 PM
  • 75
    What a wonderful success story - 5/20/2013   11:30:01 AM
    You inspire me and give me hope. So good to see a success story about a mature woman! I am turning 65 next month. Depression, hypothyroidism, 2 knee replacements, and a broken leg won't stop me. The impossible just takes a bit longer! - 5/20/2013   11:13:49 AM
  • 73
    This is a wonderful blog and so appropriate for those of us in our 60's who still care about being healthy and fit. I do a ball class at the gym twice a week led by an instructor who is 74 and I know for sure there are two ladies in the class in their 70's along with women in their 30's and 40's. this is a very difficult class ....15 various planks along with other strength moves are a regular part of the class. I love this class and sometimes wonder if I will be able to do it five years from now. But I keep going and know I need to keep strong. I love challenging my body. Thank you for being a role model for us and for sharing. - 5/20/2013   11:06:11 AM
  • 72
    I LOVE to see people having maintained goal weight, because that's something I've NEVER been able to do! This is the year, tho'!!! - 5/20/2013   10:39:55 AM
  • 71
    I loved your story and I am right there with you but did not start doing what your are doing until I was 66. I am now 67. Your are so right. Healthy eating helps improve all areas of life. Help up the good work. - 5/20/2013   10:35:56 AM
  • 70
    Delighted to see an inspirational story from one of us golden girls. To every 20 to 40-something out there I congratulate you for losing it now--weight loss is a whole different matter with menopause, hypothyroidism, osteo, diabetes, RA, prescription meds, and 3-4 decades of age-related muscle loss fighting your efforts. - 5/20/2013   10:27:59 AM
  • 69
    Wow, you're such an inspiration. I'm 58 and have arthritis in many joints and my spine. It definitely slows me down a bit, but keep hanging in there every day. I aspire to be the best I can be at any age, you've helped me want to keep it going. Thank you !! - 5/20/2013   10:10:18 AM
  • 68
    Thank you for the inspiration! At 66 I am NOT in the best shape of my life but I still believe I can be and I'm going to keep trying. - 5/20/2013   10:03:27 AM
  • 67
    you have given me hope to pass my down falls start again thanks...I know now and beleive I can do it.. - 5/20/2013   9:58:12 AM
  • 66
    Wow!!! What an inspiring story! Congratulations and thank you for offering hope!!! - 5/20/2013   9:47:24 AM
    This is a blog I needed to read today. I am going to be 68 this Thursday and I have so much weight to lose. I can't seem to get myself to stay motivated. I will have to try harder and follow your example.
    Congratulations to you. And, Thanks for this blog. - 5/20/2013   9:26:13 AM
  • 64
    Very inspirational blog!!! - 5/20/2013   9:13:07 AM
  • 63
    Great. Priscilla Patrick is 72 and still teaches Yoga. She looks wonderful, too. Age is just a number. - 5/20/2013   8:53:04 AM
  • 62
    What a great inspirational journey! Thanks for sharing to give us "more mature" gals hope! - 5/20/2013   8:46:06 AM
  • 61
    What a great story and I can relate... I still have more weight to lose but your story has truly inspired me. Hugs. - 5/20/2013   8:24:35 AM
  • 60
    Thanks for sharing. Your story is very inspirational. - 5/20/2013   8:09:13 AM
    Great job! That is very inspiring. I wish I had known as much about nutrition and exercise when I was younger. I have always exercised, but never knew until a few years ago it was possible to reshape my body. I'm in my 50's and trying to get back to the fitness level and weight of a couple of years ago. I'm making progress. I love to hear of people older than me that are still living an active, healthy life. I have such a hard time even finding people my age who want to do any kind of physical activity. I would love to have an exercise buddy. - 5/20/2013   8:07:19 AM
  • 58
    Wonderful. How inspiring! Great story and congrats on your wonderful long term success! - 5/20/2013   7:59:02 AM
  • 57
    What a wonderful story you have shared with us!
    I love that you feel that you are in the best shape of your life! I share the same sentiment! Who says you can't teach an old dog new tricks? You are living proof that this is so untrue!
    Keep on inspiring! - 5/20/2013   7:43:51 AM
  • 56
    What an inspiration. There is hope at 55! - 5/20/2013   7:31:34 AM
    What a great story especially for those of us in our sixties. There is hope - 5/20/2013   7:29:59 AM
  • 54
    I Love your photos - and you look great in those colors.

    Congratulations on getting in shape - and then sharing your new skills with others. - 5/20/2013   6:15:28 AM
  • 53
    Congratulations and thank you for sharing the experience of your journey with us! I have just turned 70, and am also slimmer and fitter than I have ever been. I also suffer from depression and was using food and workaholism as anaesthetics. I only reached my goal weight ten weeks ago. I want to take the time to teach my neighbour some chair exercises. She put on weight after a badly set broken leg twenty years ago, and her weight has made her "good" leg worse than the broken one. She needs a knee replacement, but could never afford it. And she is convinced that if she cant walk more than a few yards without making herself ill, she cant lose weight. I have persuaded her that water doesnt make you put on weight..... Your blog inspires me to try to get her exercising, maybe learning one new exercise at a time. - 5/20/2013   6:06:11 AM
  • 52
    Fantastic story and a fantastic lady! This is how I want to approach life as I start getting older, so thanks for being a wonderful role model! - 5/20/2013   6:01:40 AM
    Amazing! - 5/20/2013   5:39:42 AM
  • 50
    Thanks for a great read! It's amazing what we can do when we set our minds to it!! Your energy is awesome! From one in her 60s to another! Keep thinking young! - 5/20/2013   5:20:06 AM
  • 49
    Thank You! Just knowing that you can achieve your goals at any age is very important to me. - 5/20/2013   12:48:34 AM
  • RENATA144
    Very inspiring !!! - 5/19/2013   11:23:55 PM
    You are sooooo awesome!!! Thank you for your story. You are just the right encouragement I needed now. - 5/19/2013   10:27:18 PM
  • 46
    Fantastic blog, great weight loss. You look wonderful and I know feel tremendous.
    Your story is a lot like mine, We both had injuries in leg. was depressed and used food to numb our feelings thus gained weight. The only difference I was 68 when I started and lost 190 lbs. I can't say I am at the best shape of my life, but I am in great shape for a 71 year old who does Pilates/Yoga and works out daily.
    I totally agree it's never to old or too late to make changes in ones life., - 5/19/2013   10:19:39 PM
    You really look fabulous! I am inspired by your story. I guess 50's not too old to reform, eh? - 5/19/2013   9:10:55 PM
  • 44
    Congratulations!! You have inspired me to set a weight loss goal for husband for August 22nd!! Thank you for such a beautiful story!! - 5/19/2013   8:51:47 PM
  • 43
    Wow! You look amazing, and so much younger! 7 years is really quite inspiring. Thank you for telling us how you managed to find success. You really are making me excited for my own personal success - 5/19/2013   8:49:55 PM
  • 42
    You have a beautiful smile in your before picture, but what a great figure in your after.
    Thanks for sharing with us. I'm really impressed by your physical accomplishments, especially with the injuries. I'm 40 & couldn't do those yoga poses. WAY TO GO !
    - 5/19/2013   7:39:56 PM
  • 41
    You look amazing! I never would've guessed you to be 68. - 5/19/2013   7:34:55 PM
  • 40
    Wow, so inspiring! Thanks for sharing! :) - 5/19/2013   7:15:33 PM
  • 39
    Congratulations on your success and now sharing your knowledge with others. - 5/19/2013   7:09:02 PM
    wonderful comment just what I needed to read tonight - 5/19/2013   7:04:38 PM
  • ABROWN936
    Wonderful people! - 5/19/2013   6:53:18 PM
  • 36
    That's awesome! I am so glad you regained your zest for life and have done so well. I hope you continue to inspire others for many years to come! - 5/19/2013   6:28:45 PM
  • 35
    Wow, thank you! - 5/19/2013   6:07:23 PM
    Wow! - 5/19/2013   5:49:23 PM

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