With her lean, toned figure and washboard abs, Kelly Hoppen is an inspiration to women aged 60-plus the world over.
At 61, the interior designer and former ‘dragon’ on TV show Dragon’s Den is in incredible shape - a fact she’s more than happy to share with the world.
When the star posted a photo of herself in a bikini - all lithe toned limbs and a six-pack to die for - to mark her milestone 60th birthday last year, it had a huge impact, not least because she was in as good (if not better) shape than many women half her age.
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Kelly credits the strength-training exercises she does at her home gym – with trainers Efua Baker, Peter Cobby and Joslyn Thompson Rule – with helping her achieve her toned figure. And she’s a firm believer that age isn’t a limiting factor when it comes to staying in shape.
Speaking to Fit&Well last year, Kelly shared: “Age has never been something I’ve been conscious of, except in my teens of course, so I would encourage women of all ages to hatch whatever plan works for them. All shapes and sizes look good if – and only if – you feel confident in your own skin.”
So just how does this 60-something ensure she feels confident in her own skin? She reveals all in her own words below…
Remember: age is but a number
“Age must not be a limiting factor when it comes to everything from business to fitness goals,” says Kelly.
“My goal at the moment is to prove to people in their 60s that they can change their body shape. Sixty today is the new 40 – age should not stop you from working out and keeping active.”
Value the mental benefits of working out as much as the physical
Kelly shares: “I work out to beat stress, to gain focus for my job, to sleep better, to protect my back. The fit body is just another happy side effect.
“When I exercise I literally am bouncing off the walls afterwards. Something about working out makes me feel more focused, ready to face the day, meet deadlines and be at my most creative.”
She adds: “I’m a woman, of course, I want to look good. But I love to exercise. It makes me feel much better in myself.”
Devote yourself to your exercise regime
Such is Kelly’s devotion to fitness – exercising for 90 minutes twice a week and for an hour ever other day – that she never misses a workout, even when travelling. “If I were to miss my fitness session I would feel absolutely awful,” she says.
But what about those times when she just can’t be bothered? “That’s the thing - I can be bothered. There’s never a time when I think, ‘I don’t want to exercise’. It’s so good for my head. I’ve always worked out since I was 17, so I know what I’m doing.”
Follow a diet plan that works for you
Kelly maintains her figure by following an eating programme called Bespoke Fuel – a meal plan that delivers balanced food to her office. Then at weekends she likes to cook herself.
“I tend to grill fish and vegetables, but if I want a pizza I’ll eat it,” she says. “I drink alcohol occasionally, but I don’t really like the taste.”
Interview: Suzanne Baum