- Denise Austin tells Prevention how she focuses on looking and feeling her best at 66.
- The fitness icon discusses her top wellness habits and favorite products.
- She swears by the Mel Emove Walking Shoe and Flyght Emove Walking Shoe from her Easy Spirit collaboration.
Denise Austin never fails to impress. Whether the 66-year-old is strutting down the Sports Illustrated runway or sharing easy workout moves for women over 50, she knows how to make a splash in the world of wellness. The fitness icon sat down with Prevention to share her best health tips—from staying active to leading a balanced lifestyle to her go-to sneakers (spoiler: they’re from her Easy Spirit collab)—for feeling her best as she ages.
Austin says her “focus” now is “to help women my age and over 50,” feel their best, and entering into the new era of her online fitness community helps her achieve that goal. “I have really enjoyed the changes and growing with my people and growing with my fans that have stayed with me for 35 years. It’s so fun,” she explains.
Below, find Austin’s top health and wellness tips for women of any age.
If you’ve seen any of Austin’s workout videos (which we highly recommend checking out her Instagram), you’ve probably noticed her infectious smile and positive attitude (and her incredibly toned arms, abs, and legs). When asked how she maintains such a joyful outlook, she explains that it’s due to practicing gratitude. Austin says that “waking up feeling grateful” helps her stay motivated.
“I do honestly think that I stay positive mainly because I am really grateful for life. I really feel blessed and fortunate so that helps me,” she explains. “But things of course get me down,” Austin continues, but says that practicing gratitude helps her to “bounce back quicker.”
Ensure fitness is a priority
The other way Austin maintains such positivity might not be too shocking—fitness. “I have been like this for a long time,” Austin says of her attitude. “But I honestly think exercise does work—it is the best positive feeling for me, how good I feel after a workout. It’s that wonderful accomplishment that I did it, and then I feel better. It kind of gets rid of any anxiety or grouchiness, and so exercise does help.”
And if you’re struggling to embark on a fitness journey of your own, Austin has some words of advice: “You’re never too old to start. Don’t give up,” she says. “Because your body can change and be healthier. You can do [it] step by step—little things.”
If you’re looking to start your wellness journey, Austin says walking is the “perfect entry” into maintaining a healthy, active lifestyle.
She suggests corralling your friends, neighbors, and loved ones for regular walks around the neighborhood for walking benefits that extend way beyond just health and fitness. “Walking is a great way to stay in touch with people,” Austin explains. “That’s another thing that I think has kept me happy and kept me fulfilled in my life, is the connections I have with my family and with my girlfriends and my husband.”
Make time for family
Speaking of family, Austin is lucky enough to have one of her daughters follow in her footsteps. She says that walking with her daughter, Katie Austin, on the Sports Illustrated runway in Miami last year “was one of the biggest thrills of [her] career” and that she feels “so honored that [Katie] is following [her] fitness footsteps.”
Having her daughter join her in the world of wellness has truly amplified Austin’s approach to her career as a fitness role model. “It’s so fun to do it with her and it’s helped me evolve,” Austin explains. “I’ve been in [the fitness industry] for 40 years, so the longevity continues and it’s exciting that she’s a part of it.” And while Austin has sold millions of VHS tapes and DVDs throughout her career, she acknowledged when it was time to switch her approach. Austin discusses how her daughter became “a blessing” in helping her transition to her online presence. “I would have never understood how to do all that without her,” she says.
“Being hydrated for all of us women is so important. This is how I get my energy,” she says while holding up her glass of water on our Zoom call. “I’m a water nut.” The fitness star says people always ask what she does to maintain her hair and skin, and the answer is always water. She also reveals that she enjoys drinking water with half a lemon “every single morning,” which her grandmother used to do.
“And I also drink coffee and a glass of wine, and I’m a true believer in balance and always have been. I haven’t really changed my philosophy in all these years,” she explains. “I believe in eating good foods and always have—eat well 80% of the time and have your treats 20% of the time. And that has been my philosophy.”
Improve your posture
She also says the next “biggest thing” she always recommends is to “improve your posture,” since it helps you breathe better, walk better, and strengthen your abs. “Posture is the key to keeping young, and then keeping your muscles strong, which is really important as we age for women,” Austin explains.
Choose the right gear
Austin loves to promote strength training and walking for women. So, her latest collection with Easy Spirit (which features walking shoes) has her “so excited.”
Everyone needs good shoes, she says. “And I wanted to team up with Easy Spirit because they’re affordable,” she says she loves “different shoes [in the collection] for different reasons,” but that her favorites include the Mel Emove Walking Shoe and Flyght Emove Walking Shoe. The Mel shoes she says are great for walking, jogging, and interval training—and she loves the color selection, cushioning, and shock absorption. She explains the Flyght shoes “have more lateral support” which she finds useful for moving side to side and playing sports like tennis or pickleball.
Feeling motivated to get moving? Try getting started with a pair of Austin’s favorite sneakers below, and stay tuned for more of her insights on everything fitness, aging, and beauty.
Shannen Zitz is an Assistant Editor at Prevention, where she covers all things lifestyle, wellness, beauty, and relationships. Previously the Editorial Assistant at Prevention, she graduated from the State University of New York at Cortland with a bachelor’s degree in English. If she’s not reading or writing, you can probably find her frequenting the skincare and makeup forums on Reddit or hogging the squat rack at the gym.