Fit and Flying at Sixty

By Dena Wooten,

It’s hard to get fit, but it was harder to look in the mirror for decades and dislike what I saw.  Desperate to conquer personal struggles and life-long body image insecurities, someone in my path suggested that I shouldn’t expect to transform or build strength ‘at my age’ because I was devoted to my flight attendant lifestyle and was never an athlete.  The remark, for which I’m grateful, instigated a curious fire! 

Depleted and depressed at 54, the plot-twist began.  I let go of things that no longer served me which was no easy task!  Losing body fat and learning the physical and mental strength my body was capable of were my goals, regardless of what the scale reflected.  I hired a fitness expert and developed consistent healthy habits, especially when flying.  Realizing that I wouldn’t notice results for months or years, I fell in love with the journey and the wonder of what would happen if I didn’t give power to excuses or quit.

I quickly learned that if I wanted to experience results, exercise was a waste of time if nutrition wasn’t spot on.  Sugar, flour, artificial sweeteners, processed food, fast food and alcohol were eliminated; a few of them forever!  After all, my transformation is 80% nutrition; 20% exercise.  Home-prepped meals, rest and exercise are my constant overnight priorities; in that order.  

Work-related injuries and surgeries enabled exercise modifications because a plethora of healthy muscles were still screaming for my attention.

Zig Zigler reminds us, “When obstacles arise, you change your direction to reach your goal; you don’t change your decision to get there.”  Amen!  At 60, I’m still evolving, learning and embracing self-love and confidence which also benefits my tribe and passengers. My best advice is to be patient AND consistent.  Be mindful that motivation 100% of the time is impossible, so rely on healthy habits instead.  Embrace activities you enjoy!  We can’t expect to succeed if we only show up when we feel like it.  Cheers to healthy flying and crushing your wellness goals!

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