May 13, 2013

The Original Beach Babes

In light of Mother's Day, I thought it would be the perfect time to introduce you to the two most influential women in my life... you guessed it, my mother and my grandmother.   They are the original beach babes, and what babes they are! I have more fun with these two crazy blondes (yes, I'm the odd one out) than with anyone else. Whether spending a weekend in Palm Desert or our annual tea at the St Regis, I learn, love and laugh every time I'm around them. My mother, Donna, is a certified nutritionist and writes a blog called Laguna Beach Nutrition & Wellness.  My Grandma Lanelle is a registered nurse,  I'm pretty sure she was also the original "cougar", and she can still kick my butt in tennis anytime. They are both grandmothers, in excellent shape and health, and this week I asked them a few questions to share with all of you. After reading their answers, I'm sure you'll agree that these two put the babe in Beach Babe... truly inspiring!

Tell us a little about yourself:
Gma: I’m in my mid-seventies, but don’t feel like it . I feel I am in good health and shape, much better than those my age. Coming from a large Southern family, I grew up taking care of myself and not expecting to be given anything that I did not work very hard to receive. I also am very dedicated to my word, if I say I will do something I usually do it, if at all possible. I was married at a very early age, 16. I finished high school after I was married, had two children, and was a complete stay at home mom, until I started modeling [she was one of the first to model a bikini]. I was widowed in my late twenties and worked two jobs to support my family. When both children were out of the house,  I went to college to get my registered nurses degree. I worked full time while attending college and I graduated top of my class. I worked as the charge nurse on a locked mental health unit and drug rehab for 12 years.  Since my resignation several years ago, I have enjoyed a more leisured life. I love to play tennis, take trips and just enjoy life!! I married a wonderful man 27 years ago, [who also happens to be 17 years younger than she is] which has given me a more stress free, relaxed life style. He takes good care of me financially. I live happily in San Clemente, CA. I have my two children and grandchildren nearby to enjoy. Life couldn’t be better!

Mama: I'm 57 years old but I still think I'm 37.  I forget how old I am until someone takes a group photo of me standing next to an actual 37 year old!   I love trying new things (as long as I can be good at it!) I think that's one thing that keeps me young.  Exercise and eating right has been a part of my life from my earliest memories.  My mom was a stickler for a well-balanced breakfast every morning, no unhealthy snacks at will (we got in big trouble if we ate in between meals without asking!) and no soft-drinks in the house, ever. I began taking private tennis lessons when I was nine years old and later I played tennis in high school and a year in college.   From there I continued to attend various organized fitness classes, even through two pregnancies.  In my late thirties I spent eight and a half years practicing the marital art, TaeKwonDo and I earned a second-degreee black belt when I was in my mid forties. I have been married for almost 29 years and I have helped raise four grown children.  I am also blessed with two grandchildren. I have a nutrition and wellness practice where I coach people to become all they were meant to be in body, mind, and soul health.  I was born in Southern Cal. and I grew up in the amazing town of Laguna Beach.   I have recently become a partner in a new business venture, "Laguna Beach Live."

You both have two kids, are over the age of 50, and have better bodies than a lot of people my age. 
How do you do it?
Gma: By being active, watching your diet, sleep habits, and exercising! See the bright side of life, because sometimes the glass of life is half full, but, you have the ability to fill it up to the brim!
Mama: I am committed to my workouts and to eating food fresh and home-cooked the majority of the time.  I avoid processed foods and I never eat at fast-food places.  I mainly eat a Mediterranean Asian diet.   I also do a cleanse every six months, avoiding allergy-causing foods [like gluten, dairy, sugar, soy] for up to ten days.  Don’t get me wrong, I love to eat and I eat a lot.  If I didn’t work out I would probably be about 10-15 lbs. heavier and I wouldn’t have the energy or the feel good hormones which accompany the endorphins released from working out.

What does your workout schedule look like?
Gma: I play tennis 5 days a week,  and workout with my coach one day a week. I play doubles and singles tennis, many times in the same day. 
Mama:  I aim to work out five days a week which means I usually make it four or five.  I love to mix it up so that I don’t get bored and I don’t get injured.  I find my body parts seem to hurt only when I do repetitive movements over and over for days on end.  When I was younger I worked out 6 days a week but now I know that my body needs two days to recover so I may not do anything too strenuous on the weekends.  I might play a little beach volleyball or golf.  I also still love to play tennis.

What keeps you motivated to stay in shape?
Gma: My love of self, keeping my temple that God gave me as healthy as possible, and having a husband many years my junior!! 
Mama: What motivates me to stay in shape is the way I feel, the way I look, and the fun that it affords me.  I can keep up with my kids and my grandkids and I want to be able to do that for as long as possible.

Both of you have never had serious health problems or have taken daily medication and you both lead such active lifestyle. What do you contribute to your well being? What advice would you give to someone who wants to remain active and healthy?
Gma: Take care of yourself and listen to your body. Be your own judge and keep yourself informed for optimum health. DO NOT take medications for each and every pain you might feel. Take control of your own health, don’t depend on someone else, not even a doctor, to do this for you.
Mama: I believe in supporting wellness vs. fighting disease.  I work hard at building a strong immune system so that I can avoid getting sick or incurring a lot of injuries.
Words to live by?
Gma: “Be Happy don’t worry”! Look to the Lord for direction. Pray. Love yourself and your family. Be loyal. Be unselfish. Always be true to yourself.
Mama Spend time getting to know yourself, God, and others.  Don’t take yourself too seriously.  Have fun. Laugh regularly.  Take time to be with the people you care about.  Be open-minded to other cultures and ideas. Do something that scares you on a regular basis.   Be courageous and bold.  Love deeply.  Forgive.

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