A FORMER lawyer who took up bodybuilding in her 60s looks unrecognisable after dropping 40lbs within a year.
Ilene Block, from Maui, Hawaii, trains six times a week and says she feels “fitter than ever”.
5Ilene Block before she began bodybuildingCredit: Caters5The 63-year-old lost 40lbs within a yearCredit: mediadrumimages/IleneBlockMum Ilene says she spent most of her life on diets and following fads in a bid to have the “perfect” body.
But after turning 60, she decided to ditch dieting and ended up putting on 30lbs.
After spotting impressive before and after pictures of 76-year-old fitness fanatic Joan MacDonald on social media, however, Ilene decided to get back into shape.
Ilene said: “Joan started her fitness journey at 70, so I had no excuse with my 61st birthday getting closer.
“So in February 2020, I signed up for a macro-based program and decided it doesn’t matter how long it was going to take as long as it worked.
“Within a year I lost 40lbs and felt great.
“I’d always wanted to do a bodybuilding show, but because of my busy career as a lawyer and bringing up my kids, I could never commit to doing it during my thirties as the preparation is intense.”
Ilene then reached out to a coach to help her get ready for shows.
She added: “Since then I have competed in two figure bodybuilding shows, and I am currently preparing my body for more shows next year.
“Even now, I can’t believe I have managed to do this. When I walked on stage, in my bikini, posing and feeling confident, I was just thinking to myself, am I really doing this?
“It’s amazing. One of my friends said to me that women turn invisible after they turn 50, and I do not agree with this at all.
“I want to prove that stereotypes aren’t true and that women can do whatever they want at whatever age.
“I began my preparation for my shows in January 2022 with a mini build for my muscles and by June I started to cut.
“I lost 24lbs in 25 weeks during my prep for the show and got down to 120lbs by the time I stepped on stage.
“I couldn’t believe it. I was around 120lbs when I got married in my early twenties and I couldn’t believe I was back to this weight.”
Ilene decided to take part in two shows in the space of two weeks and was the oldest competitor at both.
She said: “Although I used to exercise, I was never pushing myself out of my comfort zone and I was stuck in a rut with what I was doing.
“Now, I am training six times a week, with a focus on weight lifting. It’s amazing to feel so fit and healthy at this age.
“As I was about to step on stage for the first time, I had a moment of panic.
“But I had worked my butt off to get to this position and I wanted to celebrate my moment.
“I couldn’t believe I was really doing this because I thought it was something that had passed me by years ago, but here I was, in my sixties and just starting out.
“Even though I am older and post-menopausal, it is so fascinating to see how my body responds to training and my diet, and I can’t wait to see what I can achieve for the next show.
“I am going to spend this year focussing on building my body before cutting again for the shows which will be around my 65th birthday.”
5The mum has taken part in two competitionsCredit: Caters5Ilene now trains six times a weekCredit: Caters5She says she previously did not have time to pursue bodybuildingCredit: Caters
Story Credit: thesun.co.uk