My Dirty Thirties

birthday, aging

It’s my birthday, and I’ll work out if I want to!
Credit: Will Clayton

Oh, the dirty 30s. Growing older has never really bothered me that much. I’m a self-professed “kidult.” I’ve always felt perpetually 14, so birthdays never really fazed me. But they’re starting to faze my body.

Here I am, 32 today, and my body has decided to pay attention. No. 1 sign my body has caught on: adult acne. Mmm, it’s oh-so fun! For the last couple of weeks my skin has gone berserk with the planet-sized boils on my grill. I finally went to a dermatologist. She kindly recommended a new skin regimen and then reluctantly gave me the WORST news known to woman. She said that because I’m older (and she stumbled over that older part!) my skin won’t heal as fast as it used to, so all of the acne scars I’ve accumulated as of late will take even longer to go away. Go aging!

Second sign my body knows what’s up: workout plans and eating better don’t change my body as quickly as they used to. When I was in my early 20s I could run a couple times a week and see muscle and definition and awesome energy. Now I’m eating cleaner than I ever have, I’m sticking to my workouts religiously, but like my skin, my healing time and physical changes come slowly…like turtle speed. My knees are creaking and cracking after runs. I may be a kidult at heart, but my body’s not buying it. It doesn’t help that I’m a Pisces—a sign known for retaining water, having a low metabolism and extremely sensitive to negative gym energy (more on that in a later post!). I have some interesting hurdles facing me!

So for this birthday, I’m accepting that I can feel and act however old I want, but I need to respect and take care of the body of a 32-year-old. And I’m cool with that. Anything that keeps the moans, groans and planet-sized pimples away! Aging gracefully? Forget that! I want to age fearlessly and strong!

How do you feel about turning another year older? —Tish 

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  1. Laura says:

    Oof! I turned 31 last week and I had to buy a larger size in jeans over the weekend. … for the first time in 7 years! I joined a running club last year, I’ve been excercising more consistently now than ever and consistently gaining weight. This is all very surprising because I feel like I graduated from high school 5 years ago. :/

  2. Ayana says:

    I just turned 37, and while I’m in the best shape of my life…the creeks and soreness I feel every day from these hard ass workouts are a constant reminder that Hey you’re almost 40. As for your acne scars, I too suffer from adult acne.. my derm put me on a regimen of duac and differin (a retinoid). The retinoid is great for anti aging so that’s a blessing. For the acne scarring, ask your derm for a hydroquinone solution. My derm made me one and it has gotten rid of old scarring in additon to any new ones.

  3. Ayana says:

    oh.and Happy Belated Birthday!!!

  4. Tish says:

    @Ayana, my face twin! I love you! I will definitely write that down and share with my doc. Thank youuuuuu!

    @Laura…we’re in the same boat my love. lol We got this, though!

  5. Tish says:

    PS Happy Belated Laura!

  6. Kelly says:

    Happy Belated Birthday Laura!

  7. Wendy in Kennewick says:

    It does get better. I’m turning 58 in April and am in the best shape of my life thanks to daily workouts. I’ve had the best ski season because I am stronger and willing to challenge myself on the slopes. I used Proactiv until my early 50’s. Now all clear! Happy Birthdays to all!

  8. Melissa says:

    I turned 30 this year and I definitely didn’t feel good about it. Things just don’t heal up like they use to!

  9. Joanna says:

    I personally think age is just a number, and have never been too bothered about it 🙂

  10. Mary says:

    I think you are only as old as you think. If you think old, you will age more quickly.

  11. Jessica says:

    Hi Tish. I love this post, mostly because I can relate. It’s true that age becomes more relative when we’re fit, but I, like you, am definitely feeling it more in my 30’s. ( : I look forward to reading more of your candid posts. If you’re interested in checking out my blog I’d love it: http://www.realfoodfitness.com/blog.

  12. Yuliya says:

    Hi Trish,

    I can SO RELATE to this! I kept thinking – why am I eating less and eat clean and I still do not lose weight as I used to when I was in my 20-s? I am 35 and just walking every day doesn’t cut it any more. I have to literally be hard-core to be able to look what I used to. But it is very difficult to sustain! My appetite though hasn’t come down. It is tough to keep slender with every passing year. For me at least. Anyone experiencing crazy appetite changes?

  13. Diane says:

    32 years old makes you very young still. I am 40 this year but believe i am only as old as i feel and by gosh i only feel about 25. I act me and i do all the things i should as a mother. Just be yourself and do not think of age as a bad thing. its only a number.

  14. Carol says:

    I turned 42 this year and I’m on my way to the best shape of my life. 32 is very young, just wait until menopause hits. I’ve always been good about feeling younger than I am, but when THOSE changes hit it became harder to stay positive. Acne and slower healing skin, plus hormone issues and night sweats were very discouraging at first. Keeping to a healthy diet and finding a good workout are so important in the mid to late 30’s. I wasn’t very hardcore about health until menopause hit and I was so unprepared. I watched a documentary called “Hot Flash Havoc” that really helped me understand the changes I was going through and helped me figure out a plan for getting through the aging process. I’d definitely recommend it, if you’re interested you can check it out here: