As cliché as it sounds, it’s never too late to better your life. And Joan MacDonald from Ontario, Canada is the perfect example of that. After doctors told the 73-year-old woman that she’ll have to up her medication dosages if she continues with her lifestyle, Joan decided to take matters into her own hands. In just a few years, she went from weighing almost 200 pounds to flexing on fitness magazine covers.

Before And After Pics of 73-Year-Old Mom who Lose 50+ Pounds

Her Story:

Hi, my name is Joan MacDonald, and I am 73 years old. 3 years ago I was 5'3'', 198lbs, and I had a 39" waist. I was on medication for high blood pressure and acid reflux, I had terrible edema in my ankles, my arthritis was extremely painful, and I had difficulty walking up and down stairs. I was tired, I was emotional, and I was in desperate need of a change. Does any of this sound familiar to you? My daughter Michelle came to me on the verge of tears. She said that I had to make a choice. She said if I continued on the path I was on I would end up even worse off, and probably on even more medication. She offered me the opportunity to work with her that winter. I would be participating in an online group with other women who were all working to change habits and take the best possible care of themselves.


Before And After Pics of 73-Year-Old Mom who Lose 50+ Pounds

So with the support and guidance of Michelle and the team of women I made a massive 180.  I learned how to use an i-phone for the first time in my life.  I renewed my gym membership, bought a food scale, a measurement tape, and got to work.  It was incredibly hard work, let me tell you, and there were many days were I was in tears over technology but I never threw in the towel.  However, I stuck to my guns and never gave up. My motto was, "I don't mind if my changes are slow. I am going to go at my own pace and this time the changes are going to last the rest of my life.'' I really meant it.  Part of the program I was doing required that each of us prepared a collage comparing our starting point to where we currently were. I think it is human nature especially on a long journey to wonder if we are on the right track or not. But as the months rolled by I could see that we were all changing. The weight  and the inches were coming off. My confidence in the gym was growing. We were all cheering each other on.


Before And After Pics of 73-Year-Old Mom who Lose 50+ Pounds

I'm now three years into my journey and I can honestly say that I am a different woman than I was when I started out. I know what macros are, I can create balanced meals, I know how to move around with confidence in the gym and I understand the importance of lifting heavy weight.  I just love connecting with other women and men who are also choosing to live a healthier lifestyle.  I've found that this new way of living has allowed me to meet and help encourage many others to do the same.


Before And After Pics of 73-Year-Old Mom who Lose 50+ Pounds

If you are looking for a change I can tell you that it is not an easy journey but it is well worth it.  I hope that my story gives you the confidence that you can change too. If I can do it, you can do it.

Before And After Pics of 73-Year-Old Mom who Lose 50+ Pounds

Before And After Pics of 73-Year-Old Mom who Lose 50+ Pounds

In an Instagram Video, the 73-Year-Old Mom shared the Romanian Deadlifts!

I do these to help strengthen my backside and really tone up my muscles. These are very hard, no doubt about it, and they aren’t easy to do right so I do recommend working with a professional.
I know I am very lucky to have a daughter and a son-in-law who are at the top of their fields. Every time I come down to Tulum to their gym I learn something new.

Here are my tips for mastering this exercise:

1) think of really tightening up your back and squeeze the back of your armpits, just like you are trying to stop someone from tickling you.

2) get a nice, tight tummy and fill it up with air before you begin. I hold my breath as I lift the weight and only take a quick sip when I’m at the top.

3) keep that bar on your legs! @jeanjacquesbarrett and @yourhealthyhedonista are really strict on that. If the bar starts leaving my legs,
I can start to feel it in my back.

4) Really keep the back from rounding. I am thinking of keeping a “proud chest”. I have a naturally rounded back from old age but I’m hoping that with this exercise and others I can prevent it from getting worse. My own mother had a real “dowagers” back so I guess it’s partly hereditary.

I’m no expert. Like you guys I’m trying to keep learning and to keep getting better. I work with people who really know what they are doing and I trust them to have my health as a top priority.
I recommend that you also work with professionals. I know it is so hard to find reliable help theses days but word of mouth is a wonderful thing.



I another video, She said:

This is a video of a typical upper body training for me these days.

Now, I want to underline that it has taken me a good two years to get to a place where I can do these exercises properly. When I started out I did very simple things like machine shoulder presses and machine chest presses. Basically I did a lot of machine work. Once the weight came off and I learned how to move better, I was able to advance my exercises and use barbells and dumbbells. Now there isn’t too much that I wouldn’t try to do!

I hope this inspires you to train with focus in the gym, and to really dig deep and start believing in yourself again. Of course it’s not easy to go to the gym and really get to work but the rewards are endless. Just give yourself time to get strong and really reward yourself for a job well done. Go get yourself a cute gym outfit right from the beginning. Don’t wait to be “perfect”. You’re already perfect if you’re doing the work and learning to love yourself.
When you get to be my age, you young ones will realize just how perfect you always were.



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