My sister and I are doing Joyce Vedral’s “Cougar Workout” and it’s extremely, very, really hard

How do you write that sound big cats make? Rawr?
How do you write that sound big cats make? Rawr?

If it weren’t for super-scary 3-way fitting-room mirrors, I’m sure I’d probably lay around on my couch all day, eating bon-bons and flipping through fashion mags.

I’m sorry, but for une femme d’un certain age, there is nothing more frightening – or galvanizing – than a 3-way fitting-room mirror.

Humbling, my friend. Very humbling. Even if you’ve been playing so much tennis your fake-blonde head is about to crack open, as I have.

I’ve blogged about my fitting-room come-to-Jesus moment at J. Crew, and I recently had an eerily similar experience while hunting for a frock or two at the International Mall in Tampa.

I texted my sister, aka Jan, in panic mode:

“I’m shopping for clothes right now and just want to shoot myself. I’m officially in my 50s!”

She texted back:

“Isn’t it fabulous? NOT.”

I’ll spare you the rest of it, which involved much pinging back and forth about body parts heading south and crepe-y skin.

Tellingly, my iPhone kept wanting to auto-correct “crepe-y” to “creepy.” And after a certain point, I gave up correcting the auto-correction.

Because – let’s be frank – crepe-y skin is creepy.

Since my sister and I are not take-it-lying-down types (even when there are bon-bons and fashion mags involved) we resolved to tighten our shizzle right up.

“Gonna Google your old friend Vedral & see if I have a revelation,” Jan texted. “Ugh.”

I want to be clear that fitness guru (and prolific author, which I’ll circle back to in a sec) Joyce Vedral, aka JV, is not my actual friend.

Rather, she is my imaginary friend, the one I’d like to have living in my closet for crisis moments such as these.

Though I’ve long been a fan, and collector of her books and DVDs, I somehow missed my one and only opportunity to meet JV.

This was back in the 90s, and she was coming up to my office for a “deskside” (Beauty Editor-speak for a face-to-face chat) to promote a new fitness product.

But for some reason I wasn’t there, so my assistant hosted her.

Sidebar: Where the hell was I that couldn’t be at the office for a JV deskside? It better have been somewhere good, like the Yucatan Peninsula.

Anyway, back to the Cougar Workout. Obvi, as the title implies, it’s targeted to older broads.

But please, isn’t JV the best possible billboard? She’s in her 60s and her bod looks easily half that.

And speaking of easy: This routine isn’t. At all. I mean, it’s easy to follow. But it isn’t easy to do. JV believes in powering through weight workouts quickly and efficiently, so you are moving. And the floor exercises – for the tush, tummy and thighs – are a killah.

But her chatter and patter as she’s going along, coaxing you through the workout, is unspeakably charming.

And it’s super-inspiring, especially when she talks about her motivation to work out, and why she wants us to just go on auto-pilot with our fitness routines and “get it out of the way” so we can “go be creative and intelligent.”

I think JV has written close to 20 books, not all of them on fitness. If I remember correctly, she was an English professor before becoming a best-selling author, and her interests are wide-ranging.

In searching the scope of her work, I see that she even wrote A Literary Survey of the Bible (I may need to track that down), as well as a self-help tome – Look In, Look Up, Look Out! – that I use to own, and probably still do, hoarder that I am.

And before I met The Man Who Would Be Hubby, I also had a dog-eared copy of her Get Rid of Him! book, which was chock-full of tips for extricating yourself from less-than-awesome relationships.

Clearly, JV gets her fitness routine “out of the way” so she can “go be creative and intelligent.”

She’s a role model. With a banging, 60-something, Cougar bod.