Meet The Incredible Woman Who's Still Body Building At 77 Years Old

One of the world's oldest body builders, Ernestine Shepherd took up body building age 56 to fight depression and is an inspiration to us all

Most of us look to our retirement as a chance to get off the treadmill, both literally and figuratively, and take life easy in our sunset years. But not this lady.

Ernestine Shepherd may be 77 years old but her workout schedule puts even the keenest young gym bunny to shape.

Every day the septuagenarian body builder gets up at 2.30am to prepare her egg whites, before going on a quick 10-mile jog with her husband of 55 years, Colin, 83.

And as if that weren't enough of a dedication to her fitness, she then heads to the gym for a two-hour workout session.

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Plus, she follows a strict 1,700 calorie-a-day diet of chicken, vegetables and pulse and washes them all down with bottles of egg whites.

We may be incredulous but just look at the woman. She's incredible. Not only does she look gorgeous and glow with health, she also credits her dedication to exercise for beating the depression she struggled with after the death of her sister.

Ernestine, from Maryland in the US,  already inspires at her local gym, working as a personal trainer and encouraging pensioners to keep on top of their fitness - her oldest client is 89.

Ernestine was 56 when she started to get into exercise again, thanks to her sister Velvet, who passed away in 1992. Ernestine described herself at this time as 'sedentary, well-padded school secretary and slug'. It became the pair's goal to get into the Guinness Book of Records as the world's oldest body builders.

And it was working out that got her through the devastation of losing Velvet.

She told TIME magazine: "After my sister died, I ended up with high blood pressure, panic attacks, high cholesterol, you name it, I had it.

"[Now] I take no high blood pressure medication, no panic attack medication, have no acid reflux. By going out running, the depression and anxiety just left me."

In 2010, Ernestine bagged the title of World’s Oldest Performing Female BodyBuilder by Guinness World Records. She's been overtaken since then but one day could re-gain the crown.

Ernestine's mantra is "Dedication, Determination, Discipline to Get Fit" and seeing what she's achieved certainly makes us want to give it a bit more welly in the gym.