It’s really interesting to know one Ernestine Shepherd who is now aged 82 is still in the bodybuilding sector and is making the headlines all over the world.
According to Ernestine, “Earlier in life, I really did not think too much about eating correctly nor exercising, but as time went on, my mind changed completely,” she says.
One day she went out shopping with her sister, Mildred Blackwell. Shepherd tried on a swimsuit. She says she did not like how it fit her. She says both women realized they were out of shape.
Blackwell suggested the sisters take a fitness class to lose weight and get in shape. So at age 56, alongside her sister, Shepherd started to exercise.
She says her sister inspired her to do more than just exercise.
“My sister was instrumental in getting me started to lift weights and to try to become a bodybuilder.”
Then, in 1992, Mildred Blackwell died suddenly of a brain aneurysm. Ernestine says the loss deepened her commitment to good health. She promised to continue training as a bodybuilder to honour her sister’s memory.
“After my sister’s death, I first couldn’t really do too much of anything. I was just so upset about her death. But then finally I got myself together, decided that I would start working out and I started working out with a friend by the name of Raymond Day. And we worked out three days a week.”
Later, Ernestine invested in a personal trainer.
“My trainer, the former Mr. Universe Yohnnie Shambourger, he worked me and got me into shape,” she says. Then after training with Yohnnie Shambourger I did my first bodybuilding show.”
And, she won her very first competition.
A call from the Guinness Book of World Records followed a short time later.
“Yohnnie got a call from the Guinness Book of World Records stating they thought I was the oldest female competitive bodybuilding in the world, but they would have to check it,” Shepherd says.
Ernestine Shepherd holds the 2010 and 2011 title in the Guinness World Records as the World’s Oldest Performing Female Bodybuilder.