This time of year, many people are forcing themselves to hit the gym so they can reach their fitness goals for the New Year, but if you need some inspiration, look no further thanErika Rischko. She’s an 81-year-old grandmother from Germany and has surprised even herself by becoming a fitness influencer. She didn’t start working out until she was in her 50s and calls herself a “late bloomer” with exercise, but she’s been making up for lost time ever since.
Erika says her fitness journey started when her kids moved out of the house and she felt lonely. So she slowly began exercising, growing more “addicted” the more she did it and eventually she was doing rowing competitions and four-hour spin class challenges. Now she works out twice a day, biking to the gym in the morning and getting another sweat sesh in during the evening. And after her daughter encouraged her to joinInstagram, she’s inspiring others to get moving by sharing her workouts on social media.
During the pandemic, Erika also discovered TikTok, started taking part in some of the dance challenges and developed a following. Hervideoshave millions of likes and she says the response has been overwhelmingly positive and uplifting to her. “I am really honored and humbled that younger people are being inspired by me,” she explains. “If I can change the stereotype of old people being boring or not being active just a bit, that makes me very happy.”