#FITFABFEB2019 Over 50 & Thriving Series

3 Top Tips to Thriving Through 50

February 6, 2019

As this month is #FitFabFeb2019, my guests for the Over 50 & Thriving Series all have stories and wisdom to share about Health & Wellness. 

I recently met a fabulous lady, Peta Gillian who runs Strong Healthy Women.  I connected with her through her Facebook Page and then participated in her Fitmas program leading up to Christmas 2018.

Peta has designed a workout program especially for Women Over 50 who  are ‘time poor’.  She created FastFIT  and when I recently attended one of her classes, I met Beryl, an 82 year who has been training with Peta for 12 years!

However, I was surprised to read Peta’s story about how she felt turning 50. The woman I met is confident and has built a successful business.  Her thoughts may be encouraging to those of you who are facing another birthday and not looking forward to it.

I knew that Peta would be a fountain of knowledge when it comes to Health & Fitness so I asked her to contribute to the Over 50 & Thriving Series.

Peta also runs online programs so I would encourage you to connect with her through her website and social media links at the end of her article.

You might also be keen to join her 7 Day Healthy Habit Reset.  The next one starts Monday 11th February so you still have time to register – I have!

3 top Tips to Thriving Through 50

I remember turning 50, my personal and professional life was in chaos.  I’d always embraced whatever age I was and never really thought that much about it. 

I’d made poor choices and really didn’t want to celebrate, but my friends and family had insisted.  I put on that brave face and made out I was having a great time, but deep down I was drowning. 

I know that you understand this, as a woman, you do things you don’t want to do, and no-one sees what’s going on inside of you.  Maybe you might share your inner thoughts with someone close to you.  This is where my first piece to thriving over 50 comes in.

#1 Start a Journal. 

You’re probably saying “I don’t have time”.  I get this. 

Here’s how to do it.  Get the prettiest A5 book and the loveliest pen and put this on your bedside table.  When you wake up tomorrow morning, take a deep breath in and exhale.  Look and listen and whatever you see and hear write about it.  Even if you only write thank you, this is a start.  The key to any new habit is consistency.  Finish each journal with thank you, thank you, thank you.

Writing each morning takes me between 3 and 7 minutes depending on how much I have to say.  This sets the tone for my day and is critical to having clarity, focus and thankfulness for all in my life.  Are you willing to try it?  Here’s a bit of trivia.  When you write something down you are 42% more likely to achieve it, because your mind thinks you’ve done it already.

You know that saying “if you always do, what you’ve always done, you’ll always get, what you’ve always got”. 

This was me… doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different outcome.  I was talking to my daughter-in-law this week about getting caught on the “doing wheel”. She’s been working the same job for 20 years and doesn’t really like it.  I asked, “what do you like, what do you want to do?”  She doesn’t really know.  I explained “this is the time to sit, reflect and get off the “doing wheel and do some searching in your heart of hearts.” 

I went on to explain when I started to reflect and really search back through my child-hood, teen years and young adult years to find what made me happy, I rediscovered the person who had been hidden for years. 

I was too busy climbing the corporate ladder to notice what I loved doing had been lost.  You see, I’m a connector. 

From an early age, if there was someone new at school, I wanted them to feel like they belonged. I hated feeling isolated and could relate to this first day at school not knowing anyone.  

Today, I get to help women over 50 connect through being active and healthy.  You guessed it, here comes tip number two.

#2 Time to Reflect

Getting away from it all, everybody and everything is not always possible.  If it is… go for it. 

Take yourself away and spend some time pulling back the layers of your life.  If it’s not possible, find your special place.  It could be a favourite chair in the study or your bedroom, totally up to you. 

For me, it’s hiking.  Being in nature, allowing the smells, sounds and sights to invigorate and drift through me, to cleanse and open my mind to what is possible and what makes my heart sing.  

Technology can be your friend during a time of reflection.  When I have thoughts out on the trails, I record these into my phone and then when I get back, over a cuppa, I transcribe and spend a little more time thinking and writing in my journal.

As a child growing up, we cared for my grand-mother who had preventable health diseases and eventually passed away from complications.   My mother has the same preventable health diseases and is now struggling.  Seeing all of this from a young age had a profound impact on my life. 

My life had started taking a downward turn in my 40’s.  Don’t get me wrong, I had heaps of fun along the way as well. 

In my 40’s I had a health issue, menopause hit me, and I started to have brain fog, lack of energy, weight and body fat increase and felt like a walking zombie. 

I knew what awaited me and so my WHY for change became really apparent. 

I went to lectures about menopause to understand more about what was happening to me.  I started working out and was told by a 20 something year old this was the way it was.  What did they know about menopause, my family history and how I was feeling anyway?  I decided right then and there, this doesn’t have to be. 

Your final tip for Thriving through 50 is here.

#3 Move More

3 top tips for Thriving through 50


You could be thinking right now “I know I need to, but where will I find the time?” 

Moving more doesn’t have to take up a lot of time.  You only need to be consistent in your approach.  This is an area that I can talk on and on about, for now I will break it down into a “small step approach”. 

  1. After you’ve journaled, it’s time for your 5-minute workout.  I’ve created FastFIT with you in mind, because if you are anything like me you hit the ground running of a morning.  With this workout, you get your heart racing, your mind and body connected and off to the next thing in your life. 
  2. Here’s the next part to move more.  We go to the bathroom a little more than we used to, so each time you go, you add squats, toe touches, lunges, or any type of exercise.  Do 10 reps, for 3 sets.  By the end of the day, you’ll be really surprised how much moving you’ve got done. 
  3. Then there is the 55/5 rule.  5 minutes before each hour, set the alarm and get up and move.  Walk up and down the hallway, outside, ride your bike around the outside of the house, again anything.  You are building the habit of moving more.

I read an article in the newspaper today about a local woman who just turned 107, active and living independently and my heart sang with joy for her. 

To Thrive to 50 and beyond it is getting back to the basics of living.

Move more, drink water, eat real food, sleep well to allow your body to heal and connect with yourself, others and nature.

Live Active, Healthy & Connected, Peta

Meet Peta

3 top tips for Thriving through 50Peta Gillian is a qualified fitness and lifestyle professional with 14 years’ experience working with women.  Featured in Prevention Magazine, a regular on the Fit N Fifty Plus Podcast Show and a Finalist in the Australian Fitness Industry Awards, Peta is passionate about helping women 50+ to remain fit, healthy and mobile throughout their lives.

Peta is the creator of FITFlex (a fitness and flexibility program for women 50+), FastFIT and Fuelled Up and launched Ageless Confidence in 2018 from her desire to give back to the community and help women no matter what stage of life to “believe they can, and they do”. 

She started her own well-being journey after watching the effects of preventable disease on the women in her family.  She faced a health issue of her own in her 40’s.  And then menopause hit her like a tonne of bricks, which started the process of research and finding her way through strategies that completely transformed her health and has since taught these same strategies to thousands of other women. 

Peta loves skiing, hiking, travelling, staying active and loves reading to learn and grow.

Connect with Peta

Strong Healthy Women  (Facebook Business Page)

Where Age, Health & Life Inspire (FREE FACEBOOK Group)

Website (currently be redesigned)


If you are Over 50 and would like to contribute to the Over 50 & Thriving Series, I would love to hear from you. Send me an email at sue@womenlivingwellafter50.com.au and I can provide more details. Click here to catch up on my previous guests in Over 50 & Thriving Series Or you can subscribe here so you never miss a post and receive a FREE Copy of my latest e-book ’10 ways to start Thriving today’! Don’t forget to post your Instagram photos using the hashtag #over50andthriving.

Women Living Well After 50

Living Life Your Way

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  • Reply Donna February 6, 2019 at 17:14

    Hi, Peta – It is a pleasure to meet you here. Your words are very inspiring and practical at the same time. I look forward to checking out the links provided and reading more!

    • Reply Sue Loncaric February 7, 2019 at 12:26

      Hi Donna, Peta is great and has given me a new enthusiasm for working out using her videos. We lost our PT a couple of years ago when she changed direction in career and haven’t really been able to get back into strength training our general workouts. I loved the session I attended with Peta and the lovely ladies in the group. I’m sure you will love her ideas. x

  • Reply Samantha Smith February 6, 2019 at 23:58

    Hi Peta, I loved reading this, you’re an inspirational lady. It’s so great to come across a health & fitness trainer who understands & supports the over 50’s. I look forward to reading more about what you do ? another great guest Sue ?

    • Reply Sue Loncaric February 7, 2019 at 12:30

      Hi Sam, yes Peta has done wonders for the Over 50s group and as I said her oldest active member is 82! I’m so pleased I have connected with her. Have a great week and hope you are still enjoying your snowboarding holiday. x

  • Reply Nancy Dobbins February 7, 2019 at 01:17

    Hi Peta,
    What you propose is so simple and so doable. I love the 55 and 5 idea each hour…and exercising in the bathroom! I’ll get a lot of exercise in that way, lol!
    This is my favorite part of your post:
    “Move more, drink water, eat real food, sleep well to allow your body to heal and connect with yourself, others and nature.” Yes, yes, YES, yes and YES!

    • Reply Sue Loncaric February 7, 2019 at 12:30

      Peta is full of great ideas, Nancy and I look forward to sharing more ideas with you. xx

  • Reply Leanne | www.crestingthehill.com.au February 7, 2019 at 09:41

    Hi Peta – Sue talks about you a lot and how inspired she is by your life and how you’re living it. After reading this, I can see why! I love how practical and time efficient your suggestions are – and I know that my Fitbit buzzes me every hour if I don’t get my 250 steps in – I’ve been ignoring it a bit lately – time to up my game! I also related to your journalling being a turning point – I think that’s what starting blogging was for me – writing it down and seeing the positives of 50+ is such a joy. Lovely to meet you xx

    • Reply Sue Loncaric February 7, 2019 at 12:35

      I really have enjoyed connecting with Peta, Leanne and I’m learning a lot from her. You have done so many steps since you have been in Brisbane. Maybe that is the answer just come over to Brisbane more LOL:)

  • Reply Natalie February 7, 2019 at 10:01

    Hi Peta – It’s a pleasure to meet you here. I agree with your three tips and getting back to the basics of living. Thanks, Sue, for introducing Peta. #teamlovinlife

    • Reply Sue Loncaric February 7, 2019 at 12:36

      Hi Natalie, yes, I’ve enjoyed meeting Peta and learning more about the work she does with the Over 50s group. x

  • Reply Min @ Write of the Middle February 7, 2019 at 10:40

    Sue thank you for introducing us to Peta and hello Peta! It was a very inspiring read. I do my 3 x weekly pilates and try to walk a couple of times a week but I probably need to move more than I currently do. I’ll be sure to check out all those links so I can get to know Peta and what she does a bit more! #TeamLovinLife

    • Reply Sue Loncaric February 7, 2019 at 12:37

      Hi Min, I wish Peta’s group was closer as I would definitely work out with her three times a week. You are doing well with your pilates and maybe you should have a go at Peta’s videos I find them really good to do at home. x

  • Reply Deborah February 7, 2019 at 11:12

    Am about to check out the Health Reset as mine can certainly use a kickstart.

    I used to do ‘morning pages’ suggested by Julie Cameron in her book The Artist’s Way and found them a really good way to start the day but I get busy and then just stop. I think the first two – journalling and reflection very much go hand in hand and moving more is something I need to start doing!

    • Reply Sue Loncaric February 7, 2019 at 12:38

      Hi Deb, I’ve booked into the Healthy Habit Reset. I find it difficult to journal but I do take time each morning for my yoga and to just be with my thoughts for a few minutes. It is a calming way to start my day. xx

  • Reply Jan Wild February 7, 2019 at 16:33

    Yet another inspirational post on your blog Sue. Like Deb I used to write morning pages, I don’t any longer but I still find the written word really helpful when I am trying to sort through an issue x

    • Reply Sue Loncaric February 10, 2019 at 09:57

      Thank you Jan! I’m loving the women Over 50 that I have connected with through blogging, including yourself. What a fabulous group we are! xx

  • Reply Joanne Tracey February 7, 2019 at 18:52

    Oh, I LOVE this! And I’m loving these inspirational women. I’m a mad journaller. Most days I write just a sentence, some days I write more, but it closes down the day before and clears the way for the day ahead – and trust me, I really need to clear the way most days!

    • Reply Sue Loncaric February 10, 2019 at 09:58

      Hi Jo, I’m loving all of the inspirational women I’m meeting through blogging. It was so lovely catching up with you all at lunch last week. 🙂

  • Reply DeeDee February 8, 2019 at 02:28

    Love this! Going to FB now to find her?

    • Reply Sue Loncaric February 10, 2019 at 09:56

      Great DeeDee! I enjoy doing Peta’s videos as I can’t make it to the classes. x

  • Reply Sydney Shop Girl February 8, 2019 at 13:25

    Hi Peta

    Great tips and they’re so easy to gradually introduce into our daily lives.

    Thank you!

    SSG xxx

    • Reply Sue Loncaric February 10, 2019 at 10:03

      Hi SSG, Peta has done so much for Women Over 50 but her wisdom applies to any age group! Have a great week. xx

  • Reply Jean | Delightful Repast February 8, 2019 at 14:13

    Sue and Peta, thank you for this inspiring post! Five minutes here, five minutes there, it quickly adds up. I had to laugh at ” was told by a 20 something year old this was the way it was. What did they know.” Someday she will look back on that and feel really bad about saying that to you and others! 😀

    • Reply Sue Loncaric February 10, 2019 at 10:04

      HI Jean I’m so pleased you feel inspired and yes short bursts of time do add up don’t they? Have a great week and thanks for dropping by to comment 🙂 xx

  • Reply Janet Mary Cobb February 9, 2019 at 08:33

    Peta your ideas are great. I sit at a computer/phone to meet with clients – so I make sure I get in those 5-minute breaks with an alarm. It does really work! I break up and take care of so many household chores this way: each break is a portion of a chore that takes 5-min – laundry: start, change, bring up, fold, and put away; clean tub, toilet, sink. This way I don’t dread chores either. Thanks for the nudge to begin journaling again. I’ve recently begun a morning routine so I will see how I can work it in.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric February 10, 2019 at 10:05

      Hi Janet, Peta does have some great ideas and they work because they are manageable. I’m like you and break up the household chores. That way you don’t feel like it is overwhelming trying to do everything at once. x

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