So it’ll be a little quiet on my blog this coming week as I shall be enjoying my sun lounger in Turkey. This time it is just me and my sisters and some of our children. The men are staying at home. Which in the case of my husband probably isn't a bad thing - he's not great in the heat!
We will be relaxing and enjoying a few days out – we are staying near Fethiye, and we have a jeep safari booked to Saklikent Gorge, and a day out on a private boat.
If you fancy following my adventures daily then do take a look at my Instagram and Facebook accounts.
Otherwise I will be back soon to tell you all about it.
As you know I will be 50 this year and I have been feeling over the last few years that I am losing my once slim size 8 figure. I have tried various diets and clean eating and continued to exercise but couldn't quite find the magic formula to shrink the expanding waist line that comes with peri-menopause.
Last summer we went to Corfu and I still wore bikinis but for the first time I doubted my decision and wondered if I should have resorted to an all-in-one. I mentioned this to my 15 year old daughter and she said ‘Oh no way, you will hate wearing a swimsuit, you will be too hot and you will miss having a tan on your tummy, anyway, you look great in your bikini don’t give it up’. I then thought about my own mum who has worn a bikini all her life and at 72 can still rock a bikini and decided I wouldn't give up but I knew I needed to work on my bikini body to get my confidence back.
Then the winter months came and suddenly spring was here, I had a holiday booked in May in Turkey and time was running out. We went away skiing at Easter and I had to buy bigger ski trousers and I just felt so unfit, my skiing was not great! When I came back I decided the time had come to sign up to The Body Coach SSS 90 Day Plan. I've been writing about it on my blog recently – see the first post here and my updates here and here.
I’ve done the first 30 days of the plan and I am seeing results! So I have purchased new bikinis and I have a spray tan booked for the day before we go away. I then read another excellent blog post about bikinis and the 40-something lady and it inspired me to tell you my top tips!
Size up – I always go up one size in swimwear, I hate to see women that are wearing their normal size and the pants are too tight, thus showing off an extra bulge on their hips. Ignore what the label says and go for flattering!
Pick the right style – there are so many styles and shapes to suit everyone now, try lots on and find what works for you. For me it is the tie side bottoms and a triangle halter neck top. I hate the bandeau type, they flatten me and I don’t need a bra style as I am not that well-endowed so I don’t need the support. A good alternative to a bikini is a cut-away swimsuit – I have one from Seafolly which I bought last year in the sale, they have the ability to really flatter the waist (bodycon) but still cover the tummy.
Don’t be afraid of ‘smaller’ briefs – I actually prefer the small ‘side tie’ bikini style bottoms. I find that the tie is loser on the hip and causes less indentation on our slightly more generous areas! And the tie side can be loosened. I did try a lovely bikini from Seaspray who design to suit our curves, the high sides and tummy-flattering shape was lovely but I just felt it was obvious I was trying to hide something.
Ignore the changing room mirror, try on at home – last year I bought a bikini at Victoria’s Secret and the changing rooms were awful – I looked dreadful and really struggled. But the lighting in these places is just so wrong. This year I have ordered online and tried on at home, the natural light at home is so much more flattering and less scary.
Consider a more expensive brand – they last for years and are usually cut better and have better fabric. Seafolly and Boden are good. There is lots of choice on Swimwear365 and ASOS all year round. Coco Bay is another great website with lots of good brands. Swimwear365 have a body shape calculator to try out too, worth a look! Also Swimwear365 do some lovely ‘tankinis’ that are not tight fitting, they have a slight A line shape and I have one that is a good alternative.
Get a spray tan – if you are going bikini shopping get a spray tan (or do one at home), tanned skin looks so much better. And then get a spray tan before you go away, I always do and love to arrive already tanned and ready to put my bikini on. Remember to still use sun cream though!
Be confident – and most importantly ROCK THAT BIKINI, I have learnt that most women are more worried about what they look like than to scrutinise you too much. No one is going to stand and look you up and down and analyse every bulge or curve. Really they don’t and if they do, then you just don’t want them in your life! And anyway, mostly I am lying on my sun lounger or in the pool and when I get up and wander about I put on a pretty beach cover up or sarong. So no I am not going to wear a swimsuit, miss getting my tummy tanned and be too hot, just in case someone, who I probably don’t know, thinks I don’t look 100% perfect. My life, my figure, my bikini!
And anyway, have you ever tried getting a swimsuit down in the toilet when you are wet from the pool and busting for a wee?! A bikini is so much easier!
I’m the oldest of three sisters; we were born about three years apart. For the first time ever, we are off on holiday, just the three of us, minus husbands but plus kids! Not all the kids though as two are too old for holidays with mum so it’ll be my daughter, her cousin who is only seven weeks older, then another niece and my three nephews. However, with each other to play with and two of them being 15 now, we should get plenty of rest and relaxation time.
Now the sisterly relationship isn't always plain sailing! We've had our ups and downs over the years but when push comes to shove, we are there for each other. I am the older, sensible one who has always been at home, writing to them while they travel … my middle sister has travelled extensively but has now settled down and is an Oxford City Tour Guide (www.walkingtoursofoxford.com) and our younger sister did a fair bit of travelling too – living on a kibbutz in Israel for a few months but now has 3 children!
Our children were all born in ‘pairs’! We had the older boys, now 18 and 17, then we had the girls (now 15) then there were two further boys (13) and finally the ‘babies’ … a girl and a boy but not such babies at all now! It was fun being pregnant all around the same time and in the case of me and my younger sister with our two girls, comparing bumps. And of course each one now has a ready-made friend of the same age.
So we’re off to Turkey where my middle sister lived for a few years, she worked as a travel rep and was based in Turkey for several summer seasons. This will be the first time we have all been together where she lived and she has plans to show us around.
Of course, one of the best things about a holiday is planning my wardrobe and my daughter loves doing the same – especially summer clothes with guaranteed sunshine and sundresses.
We are only away for 7 nights so I must try not to over pack. But it is so rare we get the chance to wear our summer wardrobe that we like to make the most of it.
I have a couple of Boden halter neck sundresses (from previous seasons) but similar here. These are so comfortable.
I've just purchased this simple maxi dress from Accessorize.
I prefer to wear dresses on holiday but we have a day out on a Jeep Safari to Saklikent Gorge so shorts will be more suitable so I have purchased a bright pair from Gap.
And I have two lovely new bikinis which I will tell you more about next week!
So all in all I’m very excited to be going away, getting some sun, some time relaxing and reading books and wearing my summer clothes.
So today I submitted my Cycle 1 results of The Body Coach SSS Plan.
I have lost 6.5” and 2 kg. The most loss was 2” from my waist. I look leaner and narrower and I’m happy that my measurements are heading the right direction.
If you eat the right food, in the right quantity and do fat burning HIIT exercise (25 minutes 4-5 times per week) Cycle 1 and then weights (Cycle 2 and 3) then your body will lose fat and gain muscle. That doesn't necessarily mean weight but you will be slimmer and leaner. I am only 30 days into a 90 day programme but already I can see this does work.
I have 10 days now until I go on holiday to Turkey for a week. I have decided not to start Cycle 2 until I get back. This is because each cycle takes quite a bit of planning and getting used to and I think that with organising to get away on holiday I will not be able to give it my all so I am going to carry on with Cycle 1, get Cycle 2 delivered to my inbox and plan so that I am ready to go as soon as I am home.
As well as the inch and weight loss though – there are many other NSV’s (Non Scale Victories):
Fifty & Fab is all about my journey into and through my fifties, I share fashion, beauty, lifestyle and exercise/nutrition tips to inspire others to be fifty and fab too … join my mailing list below for regular updates and offers. And don’t forget to take a look at my social media pages Facebook and Instagram.