Ruby Carter-Pikes is a 68-year-old professional bodybuilder who's challenging society's expectations about aging.
She's the subject of "Grandma Bodybuilder," a new video in the 60 Second Docs series, which tells unique and thought-provoking true stories "one minute at a time." Previous docs have examined the lives of a man who stutters and an adult thumb-sucker.
Carter-Pikes, who lives in Palmdale, Calif., has been an athlete since 1999, when she was 51 years old. At a time in life when many people are thinking about retirement, Carter-Pikes has chosen to devote her energy to fitness, working out once or twice a day.
"I think that to change the way you look at any age — it's not so much the way you look, but the way you feel," Carter-Pikes told A Plus. "I am what I am, I am what I do for my body. I look good on the outside, but I feel better on the inside."
She lives by the philosophy that "age is just a number" and says she loves to inspire people. She only wishes she had embarked on this career when she was younger, explaining in the video, "I could have really touched a lot of people's lives."
But her late start hasn't stopped her from sharing the importance of confidence and self-love with others. She's inspired more people her own age to try bodybuilding ("I learned that the more people see me, the more they would be inspired to do the same thing"), and she teaches a posing camp on the weekends that includes lessons on stage presentation. She tells her students, "This is your body. You stand in the mirror and you look at yourself. Don't worry about someone else. Love you."
That's a rule we can all follow, no matter how old we are.
As Carter-Pikes told A Plus, "It's never too late — there's always a beginning, never an ending. Always do something you really enjoy in life."
Take a minute to meet Ruby Carter-Pikes in the video below:
A Plus has reached out to Carter-Pikes for comment.