No, I am not exercising too much

My fitness project has no deadline. At least not for as long as I am alive. Photo: Thinkstock.

My fitness project has no deadline. At least not for as long as I am alive. Photo: Thinkstock.

It’s been six months since we last saw each other, now we have a lunch date and as soon as my friend sees me she exclaims: ”My dear GOD, you work out a lot!” The exclamation is followed by: ”How do you have TIME?” and: ”It CAN’T be HEALTHY to keep on like that”.

Since she follows me on Facebook and Instagram, she’ s pretty up to date with my training habits. I can see how she’s giving me the glance-over and I notice the relief in her eyes when she realize that I haven’t become Twiggy-thin.

– What is your goal? she asks a little later when we tuck into the poached salmon.

– Well, to feel good, I answer.

– How? Lose weight?

No, not necessarily, I explain. I am rather trying my best to stay the same weight, since it’s been a bit tricky to keep the pounds off during the last few years, due to an under-functioning thyroid gland and errant female hormones.

– But you are getting completely obsessed, right? she persists. Her tone has change and is now a bit prickly, it’s obvious that she’s provoked by the fact that I exercise more than before, a reaction I’ve also noticed among other acquaintances.

Once again, I am forced to put my work out habits into proportion: I try to move two hours a day, five days a week, may it be walking, running or doing classes at the gym. But in all fairness, there is 24 hours in a day, which means I am mostly sitting on my butt or sleeping for the residual 22. My friend hum before she asks:

– But, when is your deadline?

That’s when I realize – I have none. Sure, my new lifestyle is certainly born out of a desire to be in decent shape when I turn 50 this autumn. The project had a starting date, but has no end. It’s not like I am going to stand up on my 50th birthday on September 18 and exclaim: Finished! No, I will walk, run and weight train as best I can, for as long as I live.

Now – there’s a deadline worth talking about.

Time to embrace my introvert traits

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Apart from the five people sitting at our table there are no more diners at the stylish restaurant. Standing three steps behind us, two cute waitresses are whispering behind cupped hands. The food is delicious, the service top notch, the expensive wines are chilled to perfection.

It should to be a wonderful evening, but I can only describe the business dinner as excruciating. The situation is very uncomfortable since we have all been forced together by the customary, which dictates that after a day of doing business, we should all get together and spend a ”relaxed” evening together.

Yeah right.

The problem is that none of us really want to. We would all rather put our sweat pants on and curl up in the sofa with a glass of cheap plonk. Instead we have to continue to converse stiffly over how well the fillet of beef has been cooked and how delicious the Châteauneuf-du-Pape is.

I am speaking for myself of course, but judging by the facial expressions of my company, everyone is feeling more or less awkward. After each: ”Oh, what a fantastic meal”, the atmosphere is getting increasingly more uncomfortable and I, who get nervous, verging on loopy, from long, embarrassing pauses, start behaving like a circus horse: I trot into the ring, prance about and bend over backwards to ensure that the conversation continues.

I almost sigh of relief when I realize that one of the dark suited men has a penchant for deep sea fishing, and start to pester him with questions: What is the biggest fish he’s ever caught? Which sea does he prefer and what about fly fishing? Is it as exciting as I imagine?

Mr Big Fisherman respond politely, but briefly. He doesn’t ask anything about my possible hobbies, which means that after each of his given answers the conversation die down. I am really struggling to make it live past the posh pudding.

Afterwards, I’m exhausted and completely drained. I long even more for the sofa, sweats and bag in box-wine and I promise myself: ”Never again”, although I normally see myself as an extrovert person.

Or am I? Susan Cain, who has written the bestselling book Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can not Stop Talking and whose TED talk on the subject is one of the most watched ever with 10.6 million views, has designed a test which will give you a clue to your true personality.

When I take the test, it turns out that I’m not nearly as outgoing as I imagine. On the contrary – I am apparently a pretty quiet sort, according to Cain. Maybe my circus horse behavior is more the result of my upbringing, than an acknowledgment of my true nature?  If that’s the case, it’s time for me to come out of the closet, and keep stumm during the next awkward business dinner.

Without going loopy.


In her TED talk, Susan Cain says: ”There’s zero correlation between being the best talker and having the best ideas”. Photo: Aaron Fedor.

From drab to fab in five minutes

I’m pretty indifferent to make up, but when I find products that really works for me, I’m very loyal. I spend a maximum of five minutes putting my face on every morning (and after a gym session), which means I don’t have the time or patience to mess around.

I work as the editor of the Swedish daily newspaper Aftonbladet’s Sunday magazine and whenever I need to have my photograph taken I rarely use a make up artist, I prefer to do my own make up and hair. Not that I don’t appreciate to be pampered, but after being in the hands of a professional, I usually do not recognize myself. An eye shadow which is too dark makes me look stern and naughty (but not in Fifty Shades of Grey-way) and a deep red lipstick brings out the bitch in me and makes me look at least ten years older.

So how do I turn from drab to fab in just minutes? Well, like this:

IMG_79621. Here I am without makeup, except for an inexpensive lip balm from Nivea.

IMG_79632. The base! The only difference from the previous photo is spelled Dream wonder nude in the Natural Beige (No. 22). The new and brilliant foundation from Maybelline removes the red skin tone and is also extremely easy to apply.

IMG_79893. Ready! You’re thinking: ”How is it possible?”, right? Well, after applying the foundation I brush a little pink blush on my cheeks, Touch of Radiance, nuance Rosy Blush (No. 20), Lumene. On the lashes I use Great Lash Mascara in the color Very Black, Maybelline, and finish the whole thing off with Long last lipstick, in Berry Berry, Clinique. It does not even take five minutes to do my super easy routine. Easy peasy, that is. I should add that I’m lit up by my daughter’s fantastic make up mirror which has professional lighting, so I am not quite as shimmering in real life. I also must apologize for the same daughter’s unmade bed in the background.


This foundation is fantastically light and easy to apply. Just dab it on with you fingers, you don’t need to worry about it going pancake on you. Neither does it end up in your wrinkles, which is much appreciated at my age. Photo: Maybelline.

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Lumenes products are very affordable and of good quality. Photo: Lumene.

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Clinique’s lipsticks are favorites in my make up-bag, since when I worked as a flight attendant for SAS and had the opportunity to purchase them tax free. As you can see, it is my only luxury item. Photo: Clinique.

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Through work I get to try many mascaras, but always return to this classic from Maybelline. Photo: Kicks.


Tada! The images have no filter and have not been photoshopped or edited in any way. They are taken with my iPhone 5. A special thank you to my daughter Freja’s make up mirror, though.

Yes – 50 is the new 30!

IMG_6215In September I am 50 and I have already given myself a gift: The promise that when the day comes, I will be in great shape, inside and out. I have finally made the adult decision to focus on the most important person in my life – myself.

You’re thinking ”midlife-crisis”. Nope, I have no age concerns. On the contrary, I like getting older and can, at last, honestly say that I am pretty happy with myself. Not that I’m flawless by any means, there are certainly improvements to make, but I’ve accepted what and who I am.

I have stopped worrying about what other people think about my person and my life choices. I have grown to realize that I am good enough, and that, my friends, is a really great feeling. But perhaps most important of all, only because I am turning 50 I don’t intend to slow down. On the contrary. Now – I am ready to step on it.

And I’m not alone. According to Harris Interactive, 50 is the new favorite age. The Institute asked 2 200 men and women of varying ages: ”What age would you like to be in the rest of your life, if you got to be in good health?”.

The answer? Yep: 50.


The big five-zero.

Why? Well, according to psychologist Barbara Becker Holstein, it is because the 50-somethings can do almost anything they like:

– They have almost every opportunity. You’re young enough to be famous or start an organic farm, and still have the muscle tone to work eight hours a day, she says to

Just my point. A sort of reverse adolescence is lying ahead of me. A future without anxiety or guilt, where I don’t need to fret over who I am. I just AM.

I can already taste it: The kids are on their way out of the nest (yes, it’ll be a little bit boring and empty, bit also VERY nice). The state of mine and my husbands bank balance matters less and less, since it only needs to support us two and our dog Monty (who is a skinny whippet and don’t cost much to feed).

Therefore, after almost 20 years of so-called ”life juggling”, I now have the time, energy and money to become the best version of Erika Scott, 50: Fit and fcking fabulous.

In this blog you will not only meet me, but also many other fantastic role models, who also embraces their age: ”The Quintastics” (or LL as I call them, ”Lucious ladies, and the occasional ” lad ”) , their ”prospects” (they are the 45 plus) and ”hang arounds” (from 40 years of age).

So whether you are LL, prospect or hang around – join me! Become fifty, fit and fcking fabulous, you too!

You know you want to.