Joan MacDonald went through a major life transformation: from struggling to walk upstairs to becoming a fitness influencer on Instagram with more than 1 million followers.
MacDonald’s situation is unique because she did this while in her 70s. Her turning point was when her doctor informed her that her blood pressure was higher and that she would need new meds.
At the time, Joan’s daughter Michelle who lives in Mexico and came to visit was trying to convince Joan to make diet changes and to start exercising.
It Was a Moment of Now or Never, Says MacDonald
Joan explains that when her daughter gave her an ultimatum that it was high time she did something about her life, she realized it was a moment of now or never. She was also sick and tired of feeling sick and tired.
She felt like she was existing, but not living. So, in January of 2017, only a couple of weeks before her 71st birthday, Joan decided to move from Canada to Tulum in Mexico where her daughter and her husband live and own a gym.
The Start of Joan’s Transformation
After she settled in Tulum, Joan started following a diet program that her daughter created. The diet was focused on Joan getting enough macronutrients, carbohydrates, proteins, and fats in five meals throughout the day rather than snacking as she did before.
Her daughter, the founder of Wonder Woman, a strength and bodybuilding coaching program, worked out with Joan for the first time in her gym. Michelle explains that it was challenging in the beginning. Her mother was there, trying to get things figured out and getting frustrated when she didn’t succeed.
But, Joan kept going because she started to feel much better very quickly. In the first month of training in the gym, she lost 10 pounds. And, only a couple of months were necessary for her to cut down the meds she needed by half.
Joan Kept Going Strong & Started Gaining Traction
After going back home to Canada, Joan continued her wellness journey. She tracked her foods on an app for macronutrients and exercised regularly. She goes to the gym five days per week.
She did cardio two days per week and this routine is something she looks forward to every day. She no longer needs the hypertension, high cholesterol, and acid reflux meds.
Since the start of her weight loss journey, she’s lost 65 pounds. Her body went through a major transformation and now enjoys huge support on Instagram where she documents her progress and connects with other like-minded individuals.
Today, Joan’s Instagram account boasts more than 1.5 million followers. You can learn more about her story through her website or check out her app where she provides workout and meal plans overseen by her daughter who specializes in wellness coaching for women of all ages.
It’s Never Too Late to Start Something Good
Joan is hopeful that the people who follow her on her journey will be inspired and realize that it’s never too late to make a positive change in their lives, no matter their age. She says that nothing is magical and that it all requires work, but that this will be work that you enjoy.
She emphasizes that exercise helps you become stronger and healthier and that this is what truly matters. Joan advises those who want to transform their health that they should think about their sleep and make sure they’re getting enough of it, drink a lot of water, and not forget protein with each meal, become more active, and aim for 10,000 steps daily, keep a positive mindset through techniques like journaling, and document their progress.