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A little story of a big heart

Elena Milonova, 56 y.o.
a cardiologist, Surgut
A Healer's apprentice once asked his Mentor:

— Teacher, tell me the main secret of longevity.
The basis of longevity," said the Healer, "is health, and the basis of health is tranquillity. The tranquil man does not destroy his body with passionate love, furious hatred or insatiable desire. He does not undermine the roots of his health by joy and sorrow, sadness and fear; but, avoiding everything superfluous, he never gives up that which gives pleasure without disturbing the harmony of yin and yang.
Guess why our story began with such a parable? It's because our heroine knows about health first hand.

Elena Milovanova, 56 y.o., is a cardiologist with a PhD in medicine.
She has been working as a doctor for 32 years, 22 of them at the District Cardiology Centre in Surgut. Elena heads the department for organisation and management of district cardiology service.
She is an associate professor of cardiology at the Medical Institute and has been teaching cardiology to aspiring doctors for over 10 years.
And Elena is also the Head of the Regional Centre of Expertise for Pulmonary Hypertension.

 —The cardiology profession is about bringing benefits to people! However, it is also a significant workload in the process. How do you relax? Do you have any hobbies?

— I am an inquisitive person, hobbies and interests change every 1.5-2 years, recent hobbies include swimming, figure skating and learning English.
Over the last year I have been focusing a lot on my personal page, I am taking a course in medical blogging, I am also studying Dietary and Nutrition, and I am also improving my cardiology qualifications. But I have hobbies that have been with me for many years: travelling, reading, walking in nature. I live an active lifestyle, go to the gym, cycle, ski in winter.

—You look amazing!

— Thank you (embarrassed)...

— You know how to keep your heart healthy, which is very important! And as for being young, do you have your own secrets?

 — THE FIRST IS HEALTH. I lead a healthy lifestyle: I keep a healthy diet and watch my weight, which is the basis for staying healthy and youthful. As a doctor, I am convinced that the problem of early ageing and withering is primarily a question of health. As many people age, they get problems that lead to the development of chronic diseases, and they take this for granted:

"What do you want from me, I'm already in my 50s..., 60s..., 70s..."
Don't put up with it! All diseases, including hypertension, atherosclerosis, diabetes and obesity can and should be detected and treated in time! Chronic diseases lead to permanent disorders in the body that cause premature ageing and shorten life! I am now studying the problems of vitamin and micronutrient deficiencies in detail, which also greatly affect our health, youth and beauty!

THE SECOND IS REGULAR TRAINING. Of course, they have to be age-appropriate. I've decided that 3-4 times a week for 40-50 minutes is enough: 1-2 strength training sessions and 2 stretching sessions for muscle tone and body shaping.

THE THIRD — DO NOT LOSE INTEREST FOR LIFE! One who lives with interest and learns new things all the time is always young in body and soul. I love spending time with my children and their peers, we travel together, go to the cinema, go on quests, visit water parks and amusement parks. I have many goals and plans for the future: I dream of visiting many countries, skydiving, getting a dog, and finally learning English.
— Wow! What an eventful life, so many grand plans! You are the envy of the world! How did you come to this, or maybe you have an aged role model you look up to?

— I have long been interested in the subject of preserving youth and beauty. I am now well aware that beauty is not about correct facial features or the absence of wrinkles. It is about love for yourself, confidence, energy, calmness, realization in life, self-sufficiency. Today we see many famous women who have all of this and with whom one wants to take as an example. For me, it is above all Irina Hakamada, Emma Malinina, Irina Bezrukova. In my blog, I also try to motivate and inspire other women to grow up without getting old, to be healthy and happy, to live brightly and with pleasure.

— How do you see the situation with ageism in Russia?

— When I am abroad, I always notice a lot of advertisements for clothes, perfume and cosmetics featuring more age models than in Russia. I'm sure that in Russia, too, the attitude towards women 50+ will change, including thanks to you, Aesthetics of Age, where we will see delightful, bright, energetic age models!

— Today's society is so wired that the sight of facial wrinkles immediately brings on the fear of ageing! What is your attitude towards natural ageing?

— There are two types of ageing models. The first type is natural ageing, you can tell right away how old she is, you see grey hair, wrinkles, but you look, and you can't take your eyes off her because she's very beautiful. The second type — you know how old she is, you look for signs of age, and you don't find them: she looks much younger. I am type 2 in terms of my inner and outer condition.

I don't really feel my true age in any way. I don't feel that the numbers in my passport have anything to do with me. If I were offered the choice of going to the countryside for a barbecue or to a water park to go down a slide, I would choose the water park, although most of my peers would not understand me. I love extreme sports.

This summer in Montenegro I almost fell from a great height in a rope park: on the most difficult part of the trail my climbing harness got tangled, I had to unhook and unfasten the harness straps completely, standing on a swinging thin rope. At that moment, I confess, I thought for the first time: what are you doing, remember how old you are! But I made it through, got through the track, and thought to myself: what silly thoughts sometimes come to mind!
— What do you think women lack after 50?

— Self-confidence, energy and optimism. Many people at this age think that their best years are behind them, and that the only joys of life are having chores at the summer cottage and spending time with their grandchildren.
I often say to my peers: you and I still have so much good stuff ahead of us, the kids are grown, now it's time to take care of yourself, choose what you like, realize your dreams and enjoy life! I would NOT want to go back to my 20s and 30s again. Only recently, after 50, I have learned to love myself, to be kind and tolerant of myself, considerate of my feelings and desires. So now I am optimistic about the future, believe in myself and move forward to my goals.
And maybe that's the way to live? Make plans, move actively, allow ourselves the joys, and don't be afraid to look a little ridiculous. The more plans we have, the more we dream and take steps towards our dreams, the longer and more meaningful our life becomes. And most importantly, do not forget that life is given once, and we must live it with pleasure, with joy, surrounded by like-minded people. After all, it does not end at 60!
The images of the charming Elena are created by:

Producer — Ksenia Leus
Photo — Dinara Saphina
Style — Zhanna Baturina
Hairstyle — Maria
Makeup — Oksana Tsibina
Women's clothing shop KRASOTKA
Jewellery "Kole"
Jewellery showroom "Serebro Hit"

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