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Fit And Famous

Jane Fonda says exercise helped her get over a nervous breakdown

Take a page from Jane Fonda’s book—fitness isn’t just about how you look, it’s about how you feel

The 76-year-old actress (with an ah-mazing figure that a 30-year-old would kill for, we must say) told the Sydney Morning Herald about just how important exercise is for her mind, just as much as her body.

Fonda, who’s sold more than 17 million copies of her 23 workout videos, has dealt with her share of hardship. Her mother committed suicide when she was just twelve, leaving her with a distant father. She’s battled bulimia, breast cancer, and osteoarthritis, and pushed through three divorces.

Jane Fonda in November 2013--she's 75 here!
Jane Fonda in November 2013–she’s 75 here!

Instead of hitting a bottle or crawling in bed for weeks after second husband Tom Hayden, a politician, told her he was in love with another woman, Fonda turned to the bike—and cycled her fury away for five hours. Extreme? Yes. Healthier than common alternatives to dealing with a crushing end to a marriage? Absolutely.

‘If you’re in the middle of a nervous breakdown, working out really hard is not a bad thing because it does keep you from going over the edge – it gets the endorphins going. And it was kind of like ‘I’m sore, so I must exist,’’ she said.

Jane Fonda as Barbarella in 1968. Photo: James Vaughan
Jane Fonda as Barbarella in 1968. Photo: James Vaughan

Fonda has had hip and knee replacements, but says she’s just adjusted her workout to her physical limitations, a lesson we all can learn from while dealing with everything from a sprained ankle to major surgery recovery.

‘I believe in fitness,’ she told the Herald.'”Whether you’re young, whether you’re old, whether you’ve ever been exercising or just starting. It’s important. Maybe the most important thing in having a successful, long life.’

That’s a mantra us Healthistas can get on board with.


Why exercise is like an emotional shower


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