So, This is 40?! Hell YES.

I just returned from an outrageous 8-day cycling and wine drinking odyssey in Sonoma with some of my best friends where we celebrated my 40th birthday. During the first portion of the trip, we cycled 130 miles around Sonoma, Napa and Bodega Bay with our DuVine cycling group. We saw breathtaking scenery, sipped delicious wine, ate our hearts out and met some incredible new friends on the ride. The second portion of the trip was filled with spa treatments, poolside shenanigans, more winery tours, dancing on tables, and giggling until the wee hours every single night with some of the most fabulous women on the planet.

If you would have told me when I was 20 if this was what 40 is going to look like, I would have nodded my head in disbelief. Married with two kids, totally believable. But married with two kids and feeling like I am healthy and energetic enough to still want to set the world on fire, dance until 2AM and consistently take 40 or 50 mile bike rides? Never in a million years.

So, what is my point in sharing this with you? I am a huge believer that you become your thoughts and become who you tell yourself you really are every day. So, my question is, are you what you want to be? Here’s a little quiz to gauge if you are a believer in YOU or someone who needs to start believing that YOU are worth working for.

1) Do you wake up in the morning and think, well, still can’t wear these jeans or this outfit because I gained 5 lbs. over Labor Day Weekend, so I’ll just go ahead and put on these stretchy pants?

2) I don’t like to cook, so I’ll just order take out for the third day in a row. Chinese food is healthy as long as I don’t eat the carbs, right?

3) I’m married with 3 kids, work full-time and just don’t have enough time to workout and eat right. I’m really not crazy about how I look and feel, but kids come first, so I guess I’ll just stick with the status quo.

If you answered yes to any of these questions, I want to challenge you to start your overhaul TODAY. No matter what your age is, 30, 40, 50 or 60+, know that it’s not too late to take back time and begin to tell yourself that YOU ARE WORTH IT. Here’s how you get started:

1) Wake up every morning and tell yourself: “I’m going to feel great about myself today.” Then, decide how you are going to make that happen and wear something that makes you feel good about yourself while you are doing it.

2) Move your body. Do a minimum of 30 minutes of exercise 5-6 days a week.

3) Stop eating crap. That’s right, pitch all of that processed food in your pantry and eat real, whole foods instead. Veggies, fruit and lean meats/proteins are your new best friend.

I’m nowhere near perfect, but I’ll certainly die trying. In fact, I’m off to bike off the 5 lbs. of weight gain from my trip brought on by too much alcohol, tacos, burgers and steak. But I’m owning it and telling myself that it was all worth it.

Hey 50 – BRING IT!

LifestyleCharlee Van Wagenen