A friend of mine recently shared a video with our tennis group from one of the morning news programs. She was impressed with an interview and her accompanying message read, “She is 85 years old and is in better shape than all of us put together. My knees hurt just watching her!”
That made me laugh and of course peaked my interest. I watched the clip that showed an energetic woman, who trains 5 to 6 days a week, exercising at the track. Then I watched in awe as she pole vaulted. She went on to share that she participates in an endless list of track and field events…pole, vaulting, high jump, long jump, triple jump, hurdles, hammer throw, shot put, javelin, discus, and 50 meter, 100 meter and 200 meter sprints – and I may have missed a few. I was amazed!
I was convinced that the woman must have a long history of track and field competitions going all the way back to high school. I was intrigued and decided to learn more.
I googled Florence “Flo” Meiler and found numerous videos and lots of information about this remarkable woman. What astounded me most was that she didn’t start training in track and field until 60! Most of us are concerned that we will slow down as we get older, but not Flo. At 85 she competes across the country in the Senior Games, representing her home state of Vermont. She also competes around the world, representing Team USA. Last March at the World Masters in Poland she took home 5 gold medals, 2 silver medals, and set a world record for the 4 x 200 relay.
What motivates this woman? She likes a challenge. Active and healthy, she hopes to continue competing until she reaches 100. Her story should be an inspiration to us all. With hard work and dedication, we can achieve whatever we put our minds to. We should always strive for more and be willing to take on new challenges regardless of our age.
What inspires you?
For information about the Connecticut Master’s Games, a multi-sport festival of Olympic-style competition of Connecticut’s master amateur athletes 50 or better, visit their website https://ctmastersgames.org/ The Games are recognized by the National Senior Games Association and the United States Olympic Committee as the official Senior Games of Connecticut.