By Liana Jacob
MEET THE woman in her sixties who is constantly having to remind men that she is ‘old enough to be their mum’ after admirers in their TWENTIES treated her Instagram profile like a TINDER account.
Model and fitness buff, Sheila Kiss (62) from Birmingham, UK, started her health and fitness lifestyle when she turned 30 after she had her second child, Shannon (33).
She was always interested in keeping toned rather than skinny, so when she was in her forties, she joined a gym and began weightlifting. Since then she has been sticking to a routine of working out for two hours a day, six days a week.
Over the years she has been sculpting her lean body even into her sixties, which has improved her flexibility. With a no-calorie counting and avoiding scales philosophy, Sheila, who is currently living in Bali, Indonesia, says she feels ‘super strong’.
She is now sharing her impressive abs and youthful physique with over 55,000 followers on Instagram. She admits that younger men from the age of 20 constantly confuse her page with Tinder as she receives a lot of dating requests.
“I started my health and fitness lifestyle when I was about thirty after my second child. I resumed tennis again twice a week and also started aerobics,” Sheila said.
“Aerobics was really popular in the eighties and I could go five days a week, even with three children.
“I was also modelling at the time and sometimes it was swimwear parades so it was important that you maintained your weight.
“In my forties, I started the gym and lifting weights and I think weightlifting makes such a difference to your shape and body tone.
“I’ve never focussed on weight and I don’t weigh myself but rather focus on tone. I don’t consider a skinny body to be a healthy or a well-shaped body; I’d much rather have a sporty, well-toned look.
“When I was forty-nine, I started Bikram yoga and I did that for thirteen years. I would do six days a week. Bikram is tough mentally and physically and really makes you lean. It is one-and-a-half hours of yoga in forty-one degrees heat.
“I haven’t been doing Bikram since living in Bali but plan to resume again. I have still been doing other types of yoga as it’s so important to maintain flexibility as we age.
“In my fifties and sixties, I seemed to have increased my exercise by adding weights, spin and yoga classes. I spend around two hours a day, six days a week exercising, and I feel super strong.
“I find even though I’m the oldest in the class I will be lifting the heaviest weights. Lifting heavy weights doesn’t bulk you up but eating cakes will. I never get sick and only go to a doctor for female tests when they are due every couple of years.
“I am always asked at the gym what my age is and young women will always say, ‘I just want to be like you when I am older’.
“They always say that I am such an inspiration to them and I really love that as at the age of twenty you just realise how important it is to keep strong, healthy and fit and how confident it can make you feel.
“Men do stare but I just ignore them. I laugh to myself as I am old enough to be their mother. They totally confuse my Instagram page with Tinder; men who private message me would be from twenty to seventy. I just hit delete.”
Up until her sixties, Sheila has been a catwalk model in Australia and says that her experience has boosted her confidence.
“I have modelled in Australia and I love the catwalk the most. I always feel most comfortable on a runway in front of an audience,” she said.
“It’s always interesting to wear fashion that might not be your style but you have to walk like you love it. I always remind myself that I’m getting paid to make the outfit look good and they are not asking me to buy it.
“Modelling has been wonderful to me and I’ve worked with many great brands and I’ve met some lifelong friends.
“I’ve always been a healthy eater and even more so in the last ten years. I don’t count calories, carbs, etc. I know at my age what is good food. Basically, I don’t buy anything in a packet and all my food comes from the fresh produce section.
“We eat out a lot in Bali, but I will still make healthy choices. If we go to a dinner party, I will eat whatever is served and enjoy.
“I don’t take any supplements or protein powder and get all my nutrition from food. I can’t stress enough the wonderful feeling of being strong and healthy in your sixties.
“I treat exercise a little like brushing your teeth every day; if you don’t brush your teeth you feel yuck and bad and if I don’t exercise, I feel the same.
“Even when we travel a lot and I have no access to a gym I will power walk or run and fill drink bottles with sand for weights.
“I feel so grateful for my happy life and positive attitude; life for me is definitely for living not looking. People ask me often about why we travel so much and my reply is, ‘we are not going to run out of money but we will run out of time’.”
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