Tag Archives: Women over 40

Change of Life Style

13 Jan

I made a conscious decision before Christmas that I was going to change my life style.  No unreasonable diets etc, but simply change the way I live and do things.

The thing that prompted this was the tightness and lack of flexibility in my body.  This hit me home when I went to a yoga class when I was visiting my friend in Sydney back in November.  I lasted 45 minutes out of an hour, before I collapsed in a sore, miserable, heap.

Being over 40, I was concerned about my lack of flexibility.  I did not want to end up a shuffling, pain wracked, wreck, so a plan was formed to remodel my life.  Nothing major.  Cutting a few unnecessary calories out of my life, and adding a little more exercise.

My major form of exercise has always been walking.  I love walking.  I can walk for miles and miles, particularly if I am on holiday and I have new and interesting things to see.  I realised however, that this was not enough to ensure body flexibility.  So firstly I added some gentle stretching exercises to music.  This is mostly an excuse to blast bubble gum pop at neighbour-annoying levels.  With it’s bouncy beat and inane lyrics, bubble gum pop is ideally suited to swaying, stretching exercises.  The Sweet’s memorable song “Co-Co” is brilliant for stretching the muscles in the lumbar region and tightening the tummy muscles.

Then I decided to add push-ups to the list.  I started off with a wobbly three to a set.  A very wobbly three; I would collapse in a heap when I tried to make it to four.  And let me tell you, squashing your boobs into the carpet is NOT fun.  I am very proud of myself as I have made it up to nine push ups to a set with nary a wobble to be seen.  I’m pushing for at least ten a set, but my body will let me know when it’s ready to take it to the next level.  I do at least two sets a day.  The first lot when I bounce out of bed in the morning (yes – bounce) and then just before I go to bed at night.  If I find myself getting tight and sore during the day, then I’ll slide another set into the mix.  Even if I have to lock myself in the conference room to do it.

I realised over the last couple of days that it is working and that what I am doing is a sustainable life style choice.  My flexibility has reached to point where I can touch my toes!  I have not been able to do that for about twenty years.

My weekend treat, which used to be something like a Starbucks’ Double Chocolate Chip Frappucino, was a cup of pomegranate frozen yoghurt with dried cranberries, fresh strawberries and fresh kiwifruit.  Guess what?  It was a damn sight tastier and I enjoyed it much more than any chocolately drink.

The killer realisation came last night.  I thought I’d have a couple of my birthday chocolates.  Now this used to be fraught with danger.  One chocolate could easily become ten.  I had two chocolates and didn’t want any more.  No chocolate craving, no desire to binge.  Gone without a trace.

I can hardly wait to see where my life style choices take me.

Take Me At Face Value

23 Jul

I do wonder about the manners of some people.

I got into a conversation on a social media site with someone who accused me of A) Lying about my age because I am obviously younger than 40; and B) If I am over 40 then I am obviously using an old photo because women over 40 don’t look that young.

What?

I am not in the habit of lying about my age or using photos that are years old.  My next BIG birthday is the 5-0 one.  So I am well over 40.  And the photo I use on here was taken last November.  There has to be around 10 people who remember the damn thing being taken!

I really and truly do not understand some people.  Yes, I look younger than my actual age.  Where is that license for people to be rude?  I’m all for being direct and forthright, but there is clear line between being forthright and being downright bloody rude.

I know I look younger than 40.  I’ve lost count of the number of times I have heard “Well dear, when you reach 40…”   Errr, well, actually… 

Blame my youthful look on my genetics.  I have good skin, courtesy of my mother.  She’s nearly 85 and has skin like a child.  I have high cheekbones.  Not as high as Benedict Cumberbatch’s, but high enough that wrinkly cheeks are probably not going to happen.  People with high cheekbones very rarely get them due to the way the muscles and flesh draw the skin tight.  My cheeks will most likely get that gaunt, slightly hollow look as I get older.

I can also thank Joan Collins for my relatively youthful look.  When I was in my late teens I read her autobiography where she stated she’d started moisturizing at 16.  Joan Collins was then, and still is, a beautiful woman.  So I started moisturizing.  I see the results of following Miss Collins advice every time I look into the mirror.  Thank you, Joan Collins. 

I also drink a lot of water and eat very little red meat.  Whether this has had any effect on my skin is anyone’s guess.

The point is, I have nothing to gain be pretending to be older than I am.  Age is mostly a state of mind, anyway. 

I get tired of people saying “Oh, I’m too old for that.”  Bollocks!  I went indoor rock climbing last year.  I was probably the oldest person there attempting to climb the walls.  I didn’t look around and think, “Everyone is younger than me, I shouldn’t be doing this.”  I rigged up and gave it a go.  I’m scared of heights, and ended up frozen like a cat up a power pole on several attempts, but I still did it.  And I had fun. 

Maybe that’s the secret of my youthful look.  I have fun.  Hmmm, something to think about.

Personal Style Evolution

7 May

Over the weekend I did an audit of my wardrobe after obtaining a couple of new items.  And yes, one of them was another scarf!

I tend to audit my wardrobe pretty carefully, just to make sure I am actually wearing the stuff I have.  My clothes tend to breed like rabbits.  This time I made a couple of surprising discoveries.

Firstly, I discovered that I no longer owned a single pair of sneakers or trainers.  Somewhere along the line they had been completely replaced with black boots and loafers.  I like black for footwear…it blends with everything.  I have never been particularly interested in shoes, but it was definitely interesting to discover that my subconscious had decided that scruffy sneakers were no longer part of my personal style.

My second discovery was that my subconscious appeared to be on a mission.  All my sweat shirts/sloppy joes had managed to donate themselves to opportunity shops and had been replaced with close fitting, smart sweaters/jumpers in strong, bright colours.

At least my subconscious left my hoodies alone.  I am very fond of my fire engine red Carharrt hoodie.  Mind you, it is form fitting, so maybe my subconscious actually approves of it.

I found myself wondering at exactly what point did I decide that I no longer wanted to look scruffy at weekends?  That I wanted to look smart, but still be comfortable, 7 days a week?

I came to the conclusion that it’s a form of evolution.  The evolution of personal style.  Like normal evolution, you just don’t notice it’s happening until everything has changed.  Then you find yourself looking at yourself in the mirror, admiring the close fitting jeans coupled with sweater, boots, and a pashmina tossed casually over the shoulders, thinking that you don’t look too damn bad at all.

My personal style evolution still needs a slight helping hand.  I noticed a couple of pairs of grey sweatpants lurking in the wardrobe.  These have been earmarked for the next box to the opportunity shop.  I don’t need my subconscious to tell me that they need to go.

Gimme it Down to There….Hair!

16 Apr

Melbourne’s public transport is on a roll.  This is two out of the three most recent blogs it’s provided inspiration for!

My tram’s ultimate destination in the morning is Melbourne University.  This tends to mean there is a fairly diverse range of people on it.  Usually at the time I travel, there are few people, and most keep to themselves, apart from the usual nods and quiet smiles of camaraderie between those who are up and about before the sparrows have dragged themselves yawning and farting out of their nests.

Occasionally there are students with early classes at the university.  These can be a trial because, frankly, they tend to express their opinions loudly and forcefully, and few people can truly be stuffed listening to it at 6.00am.  This doesn’t matter to them of course, and they continue to loudly discourse, oblivious to the dirty looks they are getting from other passengers.

This morning’s trip had two youngsters eagerly expressing their opinions to each other.  No-one else was listening.  These opinions were on the subject of women over 40 and the length of their hair.  Given that between them I doubt their age even added up to 40, I was both amused and verging on developing a severe case of the pip.

According to these young doyens of social mores, women over 40 should not wear their hair long.  It is, I quote, “not a good look”.  Oh really?  Says who?

Admittedly I do notice that a lot of women over 40 cut their hair short.  No-one told me it was a requirement of functioning in society once you reach that dangerous age.  It is also not a requirement I intend meeting.  Ever.

I wear my hair a shoulder length or slightly longer.  It’s my personal preference and no jumped up little twerp with no life experience is going to convince me to do otherwise.

Part of it is the fact that I have an oval face, strong chin, and high cheekbones.  Combine that with short hair and I look like some hard faced boarding school matron.  Which may turn on some men (those who went to English public schools perhaps), but on the whole is not an attractive look.

I grow it longer so that it falls across the sides of my face, and over my shoulders, like soft wings.  It’s gentle, it’s feminine, and it’s a bitch to look after, but I like the look and the feel of my hair framing my face.

I really don’t understand why people assume that when you reach a certain age you need to suddenly change how you look and dress.  It is mostly young people who think like this.  Either that or very few of my contemporaries are stupid enough to tell me how I should look and dress.  I’m guessing the latter is most probable.

People need to come to the realisation that the way you dress, wear your hair, the colours you wear, are all ways of expressing your personality.  Your personality doesn’t change when you turn 40 – so why should your personal style?

Admittedly my copper brown locks now have silver threads through them, but it’s still no reason to cut my hair short and act like I’ve got one foot in the grave.

Blogger Has New Clothes!

3 Apr

There are few pleasures like shopping for new clothes when you don’t need them.  Well, that’s not strictly true.  I did need the new winter coat.  With that in mind I withdrew $100 from my bank and went shopping.

I know, $100 isn’t much, but I went shopping at a very special place.  The local Australian Red Cross Boutique.  Excellent clothing, many designer labels, and every dollar spent goes to helping others.

I love our local Red Cross store.  I have bought a lot of great things there over the last couple of years, but this time I think I excelled myself.

On Good Friday, peering through the window, I saw a coat.  Not just any coat.  A gorgeous red wool coat with red leather trim.  For my English readers, it looked rather like a Chelsea Pensioner’s tunic.  Everyone else: google “Chelsea Pensioner”.

Three long walks, and three equally longing gazes through the window, and I knew I had to have that coat.  Two nightmares.  What if it was the wrong size, and what if someone got to it before I did?  At 10.10am Saturday morning I streaked in the door heading for the coat.  I’d lifted it from the rack when I heard a subdued snarl behind me.  Looking over my shoulder, I saw one very annoyed blonde.  Seems she’d had her eye on the coat too!

Check the label!  My size!  Not time to do the happy dance yet.  The cut may be wrong.  Race to the change rooms.  Shrug off light jacket.  Tug on the red coat.  Bliss!  Perfect fit!  Twirl around examining myself in the mirror.  Assistant comes past and grins.  Assures me the coat looks great.  Yeah.  Pretty much figured that.  Check the price tag.  Oooooo.  Not only is the coat brand new, it’s only $60.00.  NOW is the time to do the happy dance!

Five minutes I am out the door with my precious and $40 left in my purse.  Mmmm.  More clothing treats.

A visit to a local chain store netted me a new pair of black boots for $19.00.  Then to top off my clothing self indulgence: two pashminas for $18.00.  One a gorgeous purple and silver; the other sky blue and silver.  My regular readers already know of my devotion to all things scarfish:  https://margysmusings.wordpress.com/2013/03/19/confessions-of-a-scarf-addict/

All decked out for winter for less than $100.00.  It’s really not that hard to look and feel great and not spend a lot of money to do it.

Excuse me, contemplating my purchases, I feel the need to do the Happy Dance again.  Be Back Later.

Going Brazilian

25 Mar

It’s amazing where the mind wanders when you’re sitting in public transport waiting for garbage trucks to move.  In this case we were outside a beauty salon, which had a sign painted on its window advertising half price brazilians. 

Now, I’m not sure what they call brazilians in your part of the world, but in Australia this is the full removal of all pubic hair to, allegedly, leave the genital area silky smooth and sexy.

A friend of mine had one done several years ago.  I asked about the process. I am what you might call terminally curious.  This particular day I really wished that I wasn’t!  Apparently a brazilian  involves the removal of the hair by applying hot wax.  To me, this sounds less like a beauty therapy and more like an interrogation technique designed by the Spanish inquisition!

I have no idea why women want to do this to themselves!  It puzzles the hell out of me.  Women are meant to have hair down there.  Unless you resemble a gorilla at the zoo, I don’t see any reason to torture yourself to remove it.  If you want to be tortured your government international affairs department will happily supply a list of countries for you to visit.

I know many women over forty, and I include myself in this, work hard to keep ourselves looking as young as possible for as long as possible.  However, trying to turn yourself back into an eleven year old girl just isn’t going to work!  The prepubescent look has NEVER been sexy.

I have asked this question many times: why do you do it?  The usual response I get is “My husband likes it.”  Really?  If your husband actually likes you looking like you have yet to break out in your first bout of acne, then I would start worrying about what really turns him on.

The more likely scenario is that your husband has excellent self preservation skills.  If he said to you, “Honey, you look like a plucked chicken,” he knows damn well he’ll be spending the next six months sleeping on the sofa.  Not even the goldfish will be talking to him!

The line between looking youthfully beautiful, and looking ridiculous is a thin one.  Anyone else remember panstick?  I remember when I was a child a  school friend’s mother used to use it.  Most days she looked like Coco the Clown on his day off.

At least with a brazilian the general public can’t see it.  Unless you go commando, which is a whole different blog for another day.

Feel the Sexy!

3 Mar

I really need to give up reading the colour supplements in the weekend newspapers.  It’s not the celebrity gossip.  You know, which man/woman/porcupine the current Star of the Week is screwing. I’ve never been interested in the sex lives of the rich and notorious.  It’s the so called life style advice that drives me crazy.

All You Need to Feel Sexy!  And they offer up a pair of knickers consisting of a redesigned handkerchief with attached lace for the princely sum of $300 as the cure to your non-sexiness. 

I can feel sexy with the assistance of the $5.95 bottle of Moroccan Rose shower gel from the Body Shop!  I undulate out of the bathroom feeling like an odalisque in the Sultan’s Harem, about to make her play for the Sultan’s heart.  *coughs*  Excuse me.  I read far too much Barbara Cartland in my youth.

What was I saying?  Oh, yeah.  This is what is wrong with so called life style advice.  They treat it like a home renovation show.  Drape yourself in overpriced underwear, and you too can feel like a princess.

Nope.  Doesn’t work that way.  How many of us would think “I’m wearing $300 knickers, therefore I am incredibly sexy?”  Probably not many.  I know I wouldn’t.  I wouldn’t even think it if I was being undressed by the man of my dreams prior to a night of wild, unbridled passion.  “He knows I’m sexy cos I’m wearing $300 knickers.”  I’m pretty sure he wouldn’t give a toss.  Actually, if he did know my knickers cost $300 I’d start worrying about his sexuality!

The point I am making is that there is no quick way to feeling sexy.  With my measurements of 37-31-39 I consider myself curvaceous; the fashion industry considers me fat.  The fashion industry does not create sexy clothes for “fat women”, therefore if I relied on clothing to make me feel sexy I would spend all my life feeling like a frump.

There is a simple way to feel sexy.  It’s simple, but not easy.  You have to love yourself.  This is easier said than done, I know.  You need to love your own body.  None of this anxious peering at the mirror asking, “Does my bum look big in this?”  I have 39 inch hips – my bum looks big in everything!

As I said, it isn’t easy, but it is worth it.  It’s taken me years of staring in the mirror and silently affirming that I love my body. 

Someone once said that older women are more comfortable in their bodies.  This could well be true.  I took me to over age 40 to really love my body.  To look in the mirror and be happy with what I see.  To shake my hair back, smile at my reflection, and think “I feel sexy, dammit, I AM sexy!”

And not a $300 pair of knickers in sight.

Act My Age? Like Hell!

27 Feb

I got taken to task for my last blog “Completely Cumberbatched”.  A (now former) friend on a certain social networking site sent me a private message castigating me for my “lusting after a man 10 years your junior.  Act your age!”

Got an answer for that one.  Not a hope in hell!

Where is it written that once a woman hits 40 she can no longer admire sexually desirable men who are over the age of sexual consent?  Nowhere as far as I can see.

It seems to me that some people think that once you reach 40 you have to stop having fun.  Any sort of fun.  Running around in the rain getting soaked and laughing hysterically?  No! Children do that.  Jumping in puddles? No! Children do that.  Admiring a hot guy? No, no, no.  THAT is for teenagers!

BORING!

My mother now lives in an aged care hostel.  She has lots of fun with her like minded friends.  They laugh, tell stories, tell wonderfully dirty jokes to each other and the staff, who laugh and enjoy the fact that here are people at the end of their lives who are still getting so much joy out of life.  My mother is very popular at the home with both the other residents and staff.  Why?  Because she has fun, and in doing so brings a little fun into other’s lives.

She is probably around the age now of the elderly lady we encountered at the ballet when I was in my late teens.  We had gone to see a production of The Nutcracker.  During a quiet moment as the Nutcracker Prince danced on stage, a loud, obviously elderly, female voice rose from the audience several rows behind us.  “My, he does have a wonderful packed lunch.  Wouldn’t mind a bite of that!”  Now THERE was a woman getting maximum fun out of life.

I intend to be that woman in my extreme old age.

Meanwhile, I have friends over 40 who encourage me in my fun and happily join in it.  One of my close friends has dared me to send a photo to Benedict Cumberbatch to see if he’ll autograph it.  The photo is a screen cap from “A Scandal in Belgravia”.  Wonder if Benedict is up to signing a photo of his own bum?  We’ll find out sooner or later.

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