Images: Lynne McGranger’s Instagram. Far right with fellow Hello Fresh ambassador Johnny Ruffo.
If you’re looking for motivation to exercise then you need only catch an episode of Home and Away to see 60-something powerhouse, Lynne McGranger as your source of inspiration. We were blown away by the amount of exercise Lynne fits into such a busy life. It seems the only thing she doesn’t have room for is excuses. And we love her mantra that you “live your life, not your age”.
Lynne’s positive lease on life fits perfectly with her role as a Hello Fresh ambassador. The meal plan service allows you to choose from a variety of nutritious, tailored menus and have the ingredients and recipes delivered to your door. High quality, easy food (minus unappealing frozen meals) makes keeping Lynne’s calories in check a no-brainer.
When it comes to exercise, we all know that half the battle to get moving is facing the spandex workout wear. So we also asked Lynne to share with us her active wear looks for the different activities she enjoys – walking, dancing and reformer pilates. They’re all very non-scary wearable looks, and we have to agree with Lynne’s sentiment that colour can play a very positive role in your mood and, in turn, your energy. As you can see, you can achieve comfort, style and practicality in workout gear. We think these looks could easily go from the gym class to the cafe and we suspect that’s what Lynne had in mind! We hope Lynne’s words have you reaching for the sneakers to take a brisk walk like they did for us.
How active have you been throughout your life?
I danced a bit when I was younger, did a bit of ballet and played netball as a kid. Then when I went to drama school in my late 20’s I did a little bit of activity there.
But I was a smoker so any kind of full-on cardio work I always found a bit distressing because not only was I a smoker, but I was also a bronchial asthmatic. Which of course is a great thing for a smoker! Luckily, I gave up smoking 13 and a half years ago. I gave up on the 7th March 2005 and do you know what? Since then I’ve really soared and I have been able to do things I couldn’t really do before.
As I’ve got older I actually exercise more. It’s kind of weird, instead of backing off it becomes even more and more intense. I’ve yet to enjoy running though, it’s not really my thing. But in my exercise group, ‘Step into Life’ it mixes it up with boxing and I did a Power Flex this morning which is a bit like a yoga class. I also do pilates in Balmain- toning, weights, a whole range of things. They do a lot of running there and I’ve done a couple of classes but it’s not really my thing. People tell me it grows on you and you become addicted… I’m waiting. But I do really mix it up and I’m so much fitter than I was even 20 years ago.
I also do a thing called Bounce Fit. My daughter owns a dance school called Squad out here in The Hills and it’s for anyone but mostly there’s a bunch of old ladies like myself that go. The best way to describe it is – what Zumba is to Latin American, Bounce is to hip-hop. There’s a bit of hip-hop, there’s a bit of Vogue-ing, it’s a full on 45 minutes. That’s probably my biggest cardio workout and it’s the dance component of my exercise regime.
“I love these lavenders and of course, girls always love blacks, but I’m a bit of a colour girl. That’s another thing that makes me feel good. I reckon we need to find out what colours work for us and look in the mirror and say, ‘Wow that’s a great colour. I’m feeling good today.’ It will put a spring in your step.”
Lynne says “this is an easy tee that is light and breathable” Cotton On tee $24.95
“Love a wide waistband when I am dancing as it is just more comfortable”. Nike tights $70
“Just an easy jumper to pull on and off when required”. Flight Mode sweater at Stylerunner $129
Is there’s a reason why you like to do a blend all of those types of exercise?
It uses different parts of your body as well as different parts of your brain. I like to get my heart rate up. And all woman really need to be doing weight-bearing exercise but it’s particularly important for menopausal and post-menopausal woman. I enjoy the weights, I enjoy the strength and the tone up and of course, core. Core work and core strength are extremely important and that’s probably my strongest area. I’ve got a very strong core.
We’re impressed! Would you say staying healthy has an effect on your outlook on life?
Without a doubt. I’m not an addict but if I can’t exercise four to six times a week I get restless. Sometimes I’ll just go and do a cheeky 6K walk. If I can’t quite manage my exercise classes in with my work schedule I’ll pick a time, get up early in the morning and go do a quick 6K. I love to walk, and I like to walk by myself. Although I’m trying to drag my other half out now. He’s an ex-smoker and he has a very sedentary job and I’m trying to get him out and about. But I do enjoy being by myself and our beautiful winter weather although we need rain badly. But even when it’s raining I try to get out and do some exercise.
Do you have any tricks to keep motivated?
Well, I’m not very good at evening exercise. I think the evening is for coming home, having a glass of red wine with dinner, watching a bit of telly and then learning your lines or reading a book, interacting with family. But I can do early morning. It’s a real mind game, you just have to convince yourself.
I know how psychologically advantageous it is to move, to get out and do something. You feel so good about yourself. I’m a chronic list maker and I love to be able to do that and mentally tick it off in my head like, “Yes I did that and today I did this.” You just feel so much better about yourself.
Also, there’s a fabulous coffee shop at the top of the hill where I live and that’s always my 19th hole. But it’s all about mind games, it’s all about setting yourself goals and then giving yourself a treat.
“Just a comfortable yet breathable top for when I am walking. I walk a lot.” Lululemon tee $65
“I love these style of Underarmour jumpers as they keep you really warm in the winter months”. Under Amour jumper $140
“You can even throw a puffa on over it” Cotton On puffa vest $49.95
“These are fleece-lined tights, great for winter and so comfortable. I try and walk when I have a break in work so these are perfect for when I am down at Palm Beach when it is windy. Cotton On tights $39.95
How important is the balance between food and movement to stay healthy?
It’s unbelievably important. Don’t put in your body any more than you can use in that day. Again, that’s not getting hysterical about it, you know?
I’m lucky in a way, well depends what your idea of lucky, I have an overactive thyroid. So I’m never lacking in energy, I’m the other way. I need to kind of “calm the farm” as my daughter says to me. As a youngster when I was in my teens and my early 20’s I was overweight and funnily enough, I had an under-active thyroid back then. Thyroid conditions are not uncommon particularly amongst post-menopausal women, but the trick is to just move. A lot of the ladies that I dance with and do exercise with are not heads on a stick. They’re proper women with bums and hips and thighs and wobbly bits and all of that and can still run marathons.
We’re gradually educating ourselves that we don’t have to look like people in the magazines. Most of us are just normal human beings and I think it’s really important that we embrace that, and we embrace our bodies. Whether we’re naturally thin or naturally chunky or we have big hips, tummies, or muffin tops. I think health-wise it’s just really important to try and remember not to put more into your body than you can use during the day.
I just think if ladies out there are feeling like, “I can’t do that. I’m 55 or I’m 65 or whatever.” Yes, you can do it. You’re not going to do it like a 25-year-old, but nobody expects you to
How do you balance your busy and unpredictable filming schedule with exercise? My work schedule is all over the shop, I have no way of knowing what’s coming up. You can get a sense by reading scripts a couple of weeks in advance and think, “holy toledo! That is going to be one mother of a week”. So sometimes if I get a couple of scenes off during the day, I’ll go for a walk, maybe 5K and just try and squeeze it in when I can. It just makes me feel better.
Does exercise help the mind as well as the body?
Yes, we are an entire unit. Everything affects everything else. If you’re mentally muddled or you’re feeling emotionally drained, all of those things can affect the rest of you. I’m a great believer in just getting out into the fresh air, going for a walk, taking some deep, physical and metaphorical breaths and just trying to operate on all four cylinders as best as you can. All that, I think, comes down to diet or exercise. Mental fitness to emotional fitness, to being kind to yourself and being kind to others.
I don’t think you can separate your physical, emotional, spiritual and mental wellbeing. We’re all the one unit and whatever we can do to make each one of those as best as we can then I think we’re on the right track.
“These are so soft on your skin, they are the naked range for a reason as they don’t feel like you are wearing anything.” Lululemon leggings $119
“An over0sized tee is perfect for reformer as it is comfortable and long enough so you can tuck it in at the front” Jaggad tee $59.95
“This is a great top to go under a jacket. Because of the chilly months, it is perfect to workout in too”. Lorna Jane knit at Stylerunner $85.99
“And just a jacket for to and from. Being winter I need an easy and warm jacket to throw over the top of everything”. Cotton On puffa jacket $59.95
What would you say to encourage women who have never done much exercise to start later in life? Is age ever an excuse?
Age is never, ever an excuse. Coming up to four years ago, I did Dancing with the Stars and people were like, “Wow, you’re 60 and you’re doing this, you must have always danced”. I’m an actor so I’ve moved, and I did a bit of ballet when I was a child and I’ve always enjoyed moving. But that was a whole other kettle of fish. Jumping into that was the hardest thing I’ve ever done but, again, I never at any point went, “That’s ridiculous, you can’t lift me up and throw me above your head because I’m 60.”
I made up the mantra that you live your life not your age and I’ve never let that go since. I just think if ladies out there are feeling like, “I can’t do that. I’m 55 or I’m 65 or whatever.” Yes, you can do it. You’re not going to do it like a 25-year-old, but nobody expects you to, and there’s no trophy at the end of it. There’s no medal. What you are doing is making your life as best as it can be for you. It’s not a competition.
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