Saturday, February 26, 2011

Looking fabulous at 50: Carol Vorderman shows why she refuses to fret about her body

By Emily Andrews

Lady in red: Carol Vorderman looks stunning in a full-length red dress as she poses for her 50th birthday

In her younger days she sometimes counted her imperfections. Today, as she turns 50, Carol Vorderman prefers to count her blessings.

And as her elegant red gown shows, she is a woman who has been very blessed indeed.

‘When you’re in your 20s and 30s you often think “I don’t like this bit, I don’t like that bit, I wish I could shave a few inches off here”,’ she said.

‘But when you’re older you’re just blooming grateful for what you’ve got!

‘For instance, I’ve learned that women spend lots of time worrying about cellulite but men just don’t see it, particularly as they get older themselves and their eyesight goes too!

‘At this age you don’t beat yourself up any more - what’s the point? I’m comfortable in my skin, I’m really happy and that’s all that counts.’

The mother of two, who co-hosted Channel Four’s Countdown for 26 years, has been busy concentrating on figures other than her own since she left the show.

She is chairman of a Conservative Party Task Force that will report in the new year on improving maths education.

Slinky: Carol admits she has to watch what she eats to maintain her incredible figure, but it's worth it

Stylish: Carol shows off her figure in a series of super-tight dresses and heels as she celebrates her milestone birthday

And she is running an online maths school for children up to age 12,, which operates with a team of 12 from Bristol.

Then there is the delight of family life in Somerset with her daughter Katie, 18, son Cameron, 13, and mother Jean, 82.

Christmas, coinciding with her birthday, is always a favourite time.

‘I was called Carol because I was born on Christmas Eve... no surprises there...and I just love this time of year,’ she said.

The year ahead, it seems, will be Carol’s year of living dangerously. She wants to use her 51st year to do 50 things she’s always dreamed of, such as learning to ski, completing a scuba diving course and getting her pilot’s licence.

‘I’m actually a real daredevil and I love engines, as I read engineering at Cambridge, so I want to learn to fly and go wing-walking and do some aerobatics,’ she said.

Family matters most: With Katie, Cameron and mum Jean

‘This will be an aviation year - I want to go ballooning in Switzerland and to see the final space shuttle go up.

‘There are all these things I’ve always wanted to do, but in the past the kids have been too young or I’ve been working too hard.

‘Now we can do all these things together and I have a lot more time.

‘Katie’s on her gap year before university so hopefully she can come with me to the States to learn to fly and I’ve got lots more things planned.

‘I was the kid on free school meals from a single parent family in the 60s who managed to get to Cambridge and have made the most of everything I could by working hard since then.

‘And as this year ends, I could burst with excitement. I know that a new chapter is beginning.’

Sexy: Carol teams her tight grey dress with a pair of thigh-high Christian Louboutin studded boots

Stunning: Carol looks like a woman half her age as she poses in her chic outfit

Hard work, she often says, has been the key to her success. And it seems that also applies to her fabulous fifty-something figure.

‘I do have to watch what I eat,’ she admitted. ‘Anyone who says otherwise is lying.

‘I don’t really like the gym, I do it in bursts, maybe a month here and there and then nothing, so I go on loads of walks around the countryside where I live and I walk a lot in Bristol pushing my pink shopping trolley - I must look quite a sight!’

Making the most of what you have sometimes means getting a little outside help too.

‘I had quite a bit of sun damage on my face which came to the surface a few years ago due to “frying” in cooking oil during the Seventies,’ she said.

‘We didn’t even know about SPF or skin cancer then. So a couple of years ago I went for a treatment that gets rid of it. It’s called intense pulsed light (IPL) or photo rejuvenation. It boosts collagen too which is fab.’

The Vorderman glow, however, is even more in evidence when she speaks of her pride in how her children are turning out.

‘Katie got four A*s in her A-levels this year and she loves working hard. I’m very proud of both of my children. They are kind young people who wish the best for others and I absolutely love being a mother of teenagers.’

There has been talk that she would like to move into politics, but Miss Vorderman has no intention of that.

‘There’s absolutely no way I’d want to go into politics or stand as an MP,’ she said.
‘It’s not my bag - it’s time for me to have my adventures.’



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