Grandma in Fashion

Before ‘Mr. Steal Your Grandma’ Irvin Randle popped up on the scene with his beard, fit body and skinny jeans, 65-year-old Arlette Leveque had been turning heads on social media for quite some time. A bikini photo here. A sexy bodycon dress there…there…and there. And don’t forget the signature six-inch heels (usually with a matching purse). Thousands of photo shares later people either see Leveque as an inspiration, or question why a woman “her age” chooses to dress this way. Regardless of how people feel or see her, Leveque styles her way across social media and through life unapologetically.

“My age is a number I choose not to be defined by and my style of dress is a reflection of my youthful spirit and self-confidence, as well as my lifelong passion for fashion,” Leveque tells via phone from her Atlanta residence.

The retiree turned motivational fitness coach and personal trainer explains that she doesn’t give energy to negativity or the people who find her dress offensive. Instead, she dresses for herself and to be an inspiration to others.

“I hope people seeing me are motivated and inspired to invest in their own health and well-being,” Leveque shares.

Leveque, who grew up in Haiti, remembers being an active child, running, jumping rope and climbing trees. She never thought of it as exercise. It wasn’t until she survived a car crash in 2006 that she realized every hard fought step one makes is exercise.

After the accident, Leveque wore casts on her right arm and foot, and had a shoulder replacement – the scar still visible on her right shoulder. She credits her physical therapist at the time, Debra, with bringing her back to life.

“At that point I promised myself that if I made it through, I would pay it forward by helping others the same way.”

That’s exactly what Leveque has been doing the last four years, motivating people around the world through her workout videos on her “Just Fit” Facebook page and eye-catching photos on her “Fitness & Fashion Over 60” Facebook page.

How does Leveque stay looking and feeling so young? Here’s what she shared with

On her current diet and workout regiment:

Arlette LevequeWhen I wake in the morning, I blend a fresh juice in my juicer of 2 red apples, 4 carrots, 1 beet, 3 celery stalks, a piece of ginger, and 1/2 of a cucumber. This drink is the way I start each and every day.

I then go for my daily walk for 1.5 hours. Upon my return, I have a smoothie made from one bag of instant Cream of Wheat or oatmeal, 1 cup of mixed berries, and enough water to liquefy the mixture.

Lunch is a mixture of veggies and sautéed chicken.

A snack is usually one rice cake or a handful of unsalted nuts.

I go to the gym in the evening for 2 hours for a combination of cardio and weights five days a week. After my workout, I have a smoothie made of 1 cup of strawberries, 2 scoops of protein powder, and 3/4 cup of water.

For dinner, I eat 1/2 of a sweet potato and some nuts, or another smoothie made from 1/2 cup oatmeal, 1 cup of water, and 2 tablespoons of protein.

I also drink 100 ounces of water a day (six-500 ml bottles).

On what else keeps her looking and feeling young:

To feel and look young, I stretch daily. I always wear my exercising belt to protect my back and control my posture, or my waist cincher. I pamper myself with Philosophy soap, body lotion and moisturizer. I love wearing trendy outfits and LOVE my 6 to 6 1/2 inch heels with matching purses. I love a peaceful and quiet atmosphere to meditate. I love Gold Canyon candles in lilac, rose or lemon scent.

I do not drink alcohol or smoke. When I’m having a difficult day, my favorite way to relax is at the gym with my best Haitian music, Compa. I entertain myself by posting the videos of food and exercise on Facebook. I also love watching CNN and the Health Chanel.

The company of family and friends is a great joy in my life. My seven grandchildren, ranging from one-month old to 21 years old, definitely keep me young in heart and body.

Her best advice to other women about health and aging:

Age is state of mind. Be confident and enjoy life! Never lose your self-esteem. How you present yourself defines not only how others see you, but how you see yourself. Posture is key: shoulders back, head held high. Find your fashion voice and pay attention to the way you dress. Wear the proper size bra, and don’t hide behind large, ill-fitting clothes. Breathe and smile! Cherish your body and make its care a priority.

As for what’s next for ‘Ms. Steal Your Grandpa!,’ Leveque believes the sky is the limit.

“I have unlimited ideas involving fitness, nutrition and fashion. I would like to expand my reach beyond one-on-one training to touch more people by conducting group classes, bootcamps, fitness and nutrition seminars, and public-speaking. I would also like to expand my social media presence, and share my voice on dressing with style at any age. I love fashion!”

Image: Same

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