Old Ladies in Yoga Pants

Photo on 2011-11-27 at 15.40

Recently a disgruntled old man wrote a letter to the editor of his paper to complain about older women walking around town in yoga pants (aka leggings). He felt that anyone over 20 looked ridiculous in them, which sparked a large protest parade of women of all sizes and ages wearing yoga pants. After having a good chuckle over this, I began to wonder...

  • Am I also an Old Lady in Yoga Pants?
    Guilty. When I come home from the gym, I often stop at Whole Foods which is on the way home, and yes, I'm in my sweaty leggings and T-shirt.
  • Do I look ridiculous, especially compared to a 20-year-old?
    It really depends on person, or so my husband tells me. I just hope I haven’t caused anyone to lose their appetite while grocery shopping. I apologize if that has been the case. 
  • Should I compare myself to a 20-year-old in the first place?
    Now that's the REAL question!

When I think about how fit I was in my 20's versus now, I have to admit there's definitely a difference. It would be easy to become depressed if I didn’t take a moment to celebrate what I can do. So, even though I can no longer go all-out in a high intensity boot camp class, I can and do run a few miles several times a week, as well as lift weights and stretch regularly. I might not be able to do as many pushups as I used to, but I can still accomplish a respectable amount. These acknowledgements help mitigate my discouragement when the grocery store clerk automatically gives me the senior discount without even asking!

As you can see, I have a tendency is to compare myself to others and beat myself up when I fall short — even when the comparison is unfair. Perhaps it's time to settle into a somewhat slower pace, where I can accept myself and work with, not against, my (somewhat older) body, mind and spirit.

So, I’ve decided to make just one New Year’s Resolution for 2017, which I’ve dissected below. I like to use the What, Why and How approach to resolutions and goals. Here’s the way it works:

What: Accept my older and wiser self. I will be proud to be an old lady in yoga pants and stop comparing myself to others who are younger, smarter, skinnier, more fit, more creative or more clever. I will accept myself, but not give up on myself. 

Why: So I can age gracefully, preventing injury and looking forward to the days to come, like the virtuous woman described in Proverbs 31:25, “She is clothed with strength and dignity; she can laugh at the days to come.”

How: Here’s where I choose 3 specific ways to accomplish my goal. 1) I will be less critical of myself when I look in the mirror, and instead, thank God each day for my life and the wrinkles and gray hair that come with maturity (although I’ll probably still color my hair — this only goes so far!); 2) I will continue to do some form of exercise every day, but when my body needs to slow down, I’ll walk not run; and 3) I will stretch my mind and build compassion by reading a wider variety of books and news.

As I work on my One New Year’s Resolution (which is actually multifaceted), I plan to share my experiences and offer more information on my website for creative lifestyle changes that respect the challenges and concerns of the more mature individual. This will include some short video workouts (like my 12 Days of Christmas Workouts) that are designed for those with limited mobility or strength.

If you’re approaching a certain age, and no longer want to compare yourself to a 20-year-old, then I think you’ll find the changes on my website interesting and applicable. And even if you're in your 20s, I hope my website will provide useful information for the years to come. 

My hope for 2017 is that all of my readers, regardless of age, will be inspired to grow in grace, strength and dignity with me, laughing at the days to come!

Is there one specific New Year's Resolution you want to make? Perhaps you can think of one goal that you finally need to get serious about. Share your thoughts on choosing one resolution this year in a comment below and/or on my Facebook page, using #OneResolution2017. Feel free to share your specific resolution, if you dare!

If you're an old lady in yoga pants like me, or know someone who is, or hope to be one someday, please follow my website, Facebook page, Twitter feed, etc., this year.

Have a happy and healthy New Year!

© Bobbi Mullins 2011, All rights reserved. FOOD FITNESS FAITH™