photo by MERTON/OJO IMAGES PHOTO
Good article, check it out.
As you age, consider re-balancing your workout to lessen likelihood of injury
By Julie Deardorff Tribune Newspapers
In her 20s, Lori Popkewitz Alper loved the intense cardio workouts at her Boston gym. But, as her life and her body changed, so did her fitness repertoire.
During pregnancy, Alper found yoga. Soon she was pushing a jog stroller or hauling children in a double-wide bike trailer. Now 47, Alper has returned to some of the high-impact routines of her youth, but her approach has matured.
“I’m more aware of my body’s needs, and I try not to be too hard on it,” said Alper, who regularly incorporates strength training for bone health and yoga for her sanity. “(Exercise) is such an important piece of my existence — I hope it always will be.”
Age changes things
Workout programs are like 401(k)s — they need to be rebalanced over the decades, said fitness expert Tom Holland. “As we age, we need to gradually take out the risk and put in more ‘blue chip’ elements,” he said.
These four basic-yet-effective exercises — a squat, pushup, bicep curl and abdominal crunch — should remain in your program as long as you can perform them correctly, Holland said.
“When you’re young, blue chips are often perceived as being too easy, yet they are the key to creating and maintaining a strong foundation,” he said. “You may have to modify them slightly as you age — not going down as far on a squat, for example — but you keep them in as long as possible.”
As the body ages, it naturally begins to fall apart, with some functions breaking down faster than others. After age 20, the maximal amount of oxygen your body can use — also known as VO2 max — decreases by 1 percent a year in healthy men and women.
By the time you’ve hit 30, muscular strength begins to head south. But the majority of the decrease occurs after age 50, when it falls at the rate of 15 percent per decade. Bone mineral density also decreases with age; in women the rate accelerates after menopause.
What to do …
Experts say the ideal combination of exercise for healthy aging should include a combination of aerobic, strengthening and flexibility exercises.
Balance exercises are also vital in helping prevent falls, which can lead to fractures. And though higher-intensity training programs are effective, less rigorous works can be just as effective, as long as they are done consistently.
Kim Evans, 56, a fitness professional in Grand Haven, Mich., stresses functional fitness and de-emphasizes cardio as her clients age.
“Older folks still need to get up and down off of the floor, to be able to chase after grandkids and play a round of golf or tennis without having to recover for several days,” she said.
“Aging is not for sissies. You need to face it head on,” Evans said. “Pay attention to your limitations, keep up your strength, keep trying new things and have a good attitude.”
Tweaking your workout can keep you active well into your golden years. Here’s how to reduce the risk in your exercise portfolio:
… if you’re a runner
Train like a triathlete, Holland said, because if you only run, you’ll be forced by injury to switch to swimming and biking to rehabilitate overuse injuries. Swimming is beneficial because “your posture and body weight is horizontal to gravity, so you work many muscles that receive little attention when running or can become weak and prone to injuries, such as the hamstrings, abdominals and low back,” said Michele Olson, a professor of exercise physiology at Auburn University at Montgomery, Ala. “Swimming provides a top-notch cardio challenge for heart health; that’s important since heart disease risk increases markedly as we age.”
Runners don’t necessarily need to drop their hard training days, said Amby Burfoot, 66, who plans to run the Boston Marathon in April on the 45th anniversary of his 1968 title. Burfoot isn’t running as far or as fast, and he needs more recovery time. But he still runs vigorous hill repeats several times a week and alternates running with easy spinning on a recumbent bike. He eliminated his long runs — his longest is a 13-miler versus the 20-milers of his youth. “I still run marathons but don’t race them,” he said.
… if you’re a swimmer
Add gravity. Be sure to incorporate strength training, walking or anything weight bearing to help prevent the loss of bone density, said Pete McCall, an exercise physiologist with the American Council on Exercise. Also spend an equal amount of time on your back to help balance out the curves of the spine, recommends Jill Murphy, a physical therapist, licensed athletic trainer and strength and conditioning specialist in Neenah, Wis. Adding some backstroke into the mix “will stretch your pectoral muscles and work the muscles between your shoulder blades that help stabilize your spine and maintain your posture all day long,” she said.
… if you’re a cyclist
Run. “Cycling mainly involves the quadriceps muscles while running is primarily a hamstring activity,” Holland said. “When either of these muscles is too strong, injury occurs. Combining biking and running keep these muscle groups balanced, which keeps you injury-free.” Also try the stationary rower, which doesn’t put vertical pressure on the knees, McCall said.
… if you’re a bodybuilder
Try yoga. “Improve your flexibility and provide a static challenge to the muscles versus the dynamic ‘pump, pump, pump,’ rep after rep you’ve experienced with a long-term routine of bodybuilding,” Olson said.
… if you’re a tennis player
Balance the other side. “Do resistance training and in the form of dumbbells, bands and tubing to balance the strength on each side of the body,” Olson said. “If you are right-handed, most of the joints and muscles on the right side of the body will be better developed than those on the left side. With free weights, each arm has to independently hoist the weight such as shoulder presses with the left side versus the right side.”
… if you don’t work out
Start moving. “Don’t worry about weights, just get up and walk or try something fun like Zumba,” McCall said. Start with a form of cardio, such as walking, spinning or using a cardio machine. Adopt a good core-building activity, such a Pilates or use TRX to build a baseline of strength. Holland recommends exercise DVDs. “They’re ridiculously inexpensive now, you don’t have to leave home to exercise and you can find everything from tai chi to P90X,” he said. “And, if you press play enough, they really work.”
picture by MERTON/OJO IMAGES PHOTO
It’s great to see so many new people swimming and getting in shape for summer. Many of you would like to go to a swim meet, do your first triathlon, train for more triathlons, or something as simple as staying in good shape. You found the right place! Bring your friends and we can all suffer, I mean, have fun together.
Learning Efficiency in Swimming
There are many sites around the web for efficiency in swimming. They help you get a visual, and then later, I can refine it. Try these: http://www.goswim.tv/, http://usaswimming.org . A good one for freestyle – http://blip.tv/theraceclub/secret-tip-how-to-pull-underwater-drills-4933261
Do you ever feel tired or worn down? You think its just you or lack of something going on like sleep? Well, you may want to look at your eating habits, especially when training. The United States Swimming website has a good place to start. http://usaswimming.org/DesktopDefault.aspx?TabId=1546&Alias=Rainbow&Lang=en
Need to find a triathlon for you? Here is a good place to find them locally. Need National? Just change state or go the ironman or HITS sites.
http://www.trifind.com/ or http://www.ironman.com/ or http://www.hitstriathlonseries.com/
Looking for a cycling group? http://www.cflcycling.com/
Swim Meets and US Master Registration
Looking for swim meets? What about open water? http://www.usms.org/comp/event_search.php?utm_campaign=top_nav&utm_medium=events_and_results
Can someone plan a meet up?
Oviedo Ale House?
Looking forward to getting you all in shape! See you at the pool!
Here’s the final part of our year in review, checking out memorable moments involving swimmers from the Sunshine State. These are by no means all of the outstanding swims done this year, simply the most memorable from our point of view. If you think of some we haven’t, be sure to post it on ourFacebook page.
17. Elizabeth Beisel winning the 200 Back at the NCAA Championships.
Before she headed to the Olympics, the University of Florida’s Elizabeth Beisel dominated the college arena. At the 2012 NCAA Championships, she rocked the pool by winning the 200 Back in 1:50.58. Woot!
18. Indian River State College wins their 38th Junior College National Championship Title.
Yes, you read that correctly: 38 wins in a row for the men! (34th for the women.) They also had a few records set along the way: the women’s 400 medley relay team of Kristina Morgan, Tryshia Centeno, Solyvette Lizardi and Maria Munoz set a national record in their home pool with a time of 3:42.95. On the men’s side, Bradley Tandy, Logan Mosley, Luis Flores and Caleb Weir claimed the men’s 400 free relay in 2:54.69, which was also a new NJCAA record. Congrats!
19. Alia Atkinson captures two silvers in Istanbul.
The three-time Olympian and South Florida Aquatic swimmer Alia Atkinson came close to knocking off Olympic champion Ruta Meilutyte of Lithuania in the 50 Breaststroke. Going stroke-for-stroke Meilutyte just out-touched Atkinson for the gold medal in a meet and European record 29.44. Atkins touched in at 29.67 for silver. The two battled again in the 100-meter breaststroke. Atkinson finished with a time of 1:03.80 to Meilutyte’s 1:03. 52. This showdown between the two has all the makings of a great rivalry!
20. Ryan Murphy brings home two medals.
Ryan Murphy BSS) won two medals at the 2012 Short Course World Championships. First, Murphy won a bronze medal in the 200 Backstroke in a battle with Ryan Lochte and Radoslaw Kawecki from Poland. The race came down to the last 25 and Ryan came 0.4 short from winning the gold! It was an amazing race making him the third fastest All-Time Textile swimmer, and he is only 17! Murphy then was part of the mens 400 Medley Relay (prelims) which also medalled. Congrats!
21. Bolles swimmers uniting around their former coach who was injured competing in a triathlon.
After former Bolles coach Clare Blackwell was injured competing in Europe, several Bolles swimmers decided to do a fundraiser in her honor. Joseph Schooling, Megan Fonteno, Ryan Murphy, Patrick Murphy, Colin Hamilton, Lauren Neidigh, Ali Talwar, Eric Vanden Noort, Britt Aubley, Kourtney Gavin were among the swimmers who were attempting to do a “best swim” to raise money. For each personal record, the swimmers were doing something positive that went beyond themselves. This was a memorable movement!
22. Diana Nyad attempting the Cuba Swim at age 63.
Swimming over 100 miles through ocean rough water, stormy weather, jellyfish stings and sharks in abundance… have ou heard enough? The fact that she didn’t quite make it didn’t matter one bit! Diana Nyad’s effort and determination is inspiration to us all!
23. Ryan Lochte giving out his medals.
Whatever might be said about Ryan Lochte, you have to include something about the size of his heart. At the World Championships in Istanbul, Lochte continued to win friends and play the positive role model as he gave away his medals. He tweeted: “2 gold medals were amazing but it didn’t beat giving a lil boy from Turkey my gold medal, he was so happy he started crying! #priceless” We agree! (But his dad Steve Lochte told SwimmerJoe, “Hope he saves one for his dad to see.” Hee hee!)
24. Coach Kelly Allen, 1963 – 2012
TBAY and Westchase swim coach Kelly Allen’s swimmers showed their love and appreciation for their former coach by wearing it on their shoulders. He is missed greatly by all of Florida Swimming.
25. Ron “Stix” Ballatore, 1939-2012
As UCLA’s head coach for 16 seasons and led the Bruins to the 1982 men’s NCAA championship. He also coached in five Olympics before coming to the University of Florida, where he coached from 1996-1999. Three of Ballatore’s children swam for the Gators, including Angelina who was a senior this year. Early in 2012, many of Ballatore’s swimmers from UCLA’s championship teams, including Olympian Brian Goodell, made the trek to Florida to see their coach a final time.
26. Charlie Futrell, 1920 – 2012
Charlie Futrell competed in 119 triatlons, did 6 Ironmans (winning his age group for USA), was an ITU World Age Group Champion, had been inducted into the East Carolina University Athletic Hall of Fame, and was good friends with 1936 Olympian Jesse Owens… and we here at Florida Swim Network had the honor of chatting with Futrell, as he set a new world record time in a sprint triathlon – at the 91 years old! Here’s to you, Charlie!
27. Rowdy Gaines defending his honor at the Tiburon Sprint.
Winter Haven native and Olympic gold medalist Rowdy Gaines is one of our favorite commentator (along with our very own Mike Kennedy and David Van Buskirk!) and so we loved watching him host a unique event, the Tiburon Sprint. Held in the 2-lane short course pool at the home of Tod Spieker. Nicknamed the “World’s Fastest 50 Freestyle Match” select sprinters draw numbers to be matched up in a duel to the wall. The fastest female swimmer, Ariana Vanderpool-Wallace, got the chance to race Rowdy Gaines in a battle of the sexes. 53-year-old Rowdy wins it all in 21.98 – whew!
28. Brooke Bennett as the come back queen!
At age 32, three-time Olympic gold medalist, Brooke Bennett is back in the water, and we’re loving it! Perhaps motivated by fellow distance queen Janet Evans in her comeback bid, Bennett is back in the water and training hard. From swimming distance events at the Rowdy Gaines Masters Classic to USA Swimming where she dabbles in “off” events, the start of Bennett’s comeback career is exciting to witness. here’s to big things in 2013!
Do you have other memorable moments from 2012? If so, tell us about them on our Facebook page – we’d love to share your memories!
Florida Swim Network is reviewing our most memorable moments from 2012 – performances from athletes in the Sunshine State. These are by no means all of the outstanding swims done this year, simply the most memorable from our point of view. If you think of some we haven’t, be sure to post it on our Facebook page.
8. Bolles School sets three new National Records with their relays.
Before Bolles headed to Junior Nationals in Knoxville (where they swept the Men’s Relays), they were already in the national spotlight at the 1A State Meet. In the high school season, Bolles not only won their relays, but set three National Records (200-yard medley, 200-yard freestyle and 400-yard free relays.) all in one night! The swimmers included differing mixes of Ryan Murphy, Joseph Schooling, Santo Condorelli, Josh Booth, and Emiro Goosen. And to top it off, swimmer Joseph Schooling also lowered the national high school 100-yard fly record. It was indeed a night to remember!
9. Kaitlyn Cronin breaking 3 Florida Swimming Records.
10 and Under swimmer Kaitlyn Cronin (GSC) had an incredible spring meet, setting new records in the 50 Free 26.29 (a record that has stood for 11 years), 100 back 1:03.76, and 50 back 29.66. She then proceeded destroy the rest of the field in the 100 Breast 1:16.78, 100 IM 1:04.97, and 200 IM 2:24.57. Great job!
10. George McGovern winning 5 events.
14-year-old George “Wes” McGovern (TBAY) was exceptional in the summer meet, winning 5 events. McGovern won the 200 Free 1:43.06, 500 Free 4:37.70, 200 Back 1:55.05, and 200 IM 1:59.41. McGovern was then second in his other two events – 1000 Free 9:37.53 (2nd to Eric Ordaz), 100 Back 54.16 (2nd to Alex Carson). He was the high-point winner in the 13-14 Boys division division and broke two meet records in the 200 Free and 400 Free, smashing the previous record set in 2004 by 2.67 seconds. Great way to finish at FLAGs!
10. Erika Erndl sets three World Records in one day!
As a 2012 Olympic Trials semifinalist, Erika Erndl (T2 Masters, 30-34 age group) is no stranger to speed. But to set three world marks in the 30-34 age group, all in one day, was remarkable! Erndl posted a 1:02.52 in the 100 IM. Then, she swam a 54.75 in the 100 freestyle. And finallym leading of T2′s mixed 800 freestyle relay, Erndl swam a speedy 2:00.58. (She just missed a fourth world record when she swam a 1:00.34 in the 100 butterfly, too!)
11. Rowdy Gines Masters Classic sees 14 New World Records.
At the Rowdy Gaines Master Classic held at the Y of Central Florida this past October, 14 new world records were set by Masters swimmers. Like Erndl, Jean Troy (Florida Mavericks Masters, 85-89 age group) took down three records herself while Betty Lorenzi (Florida Aquatic Masters, 85-89 age group) also set three new marks. Rich Abrahams (Blu Frog, 65-69 age group) helped set two, an individual as well as part of a two record setting relays for Blu Frog along with Marc Middleton, Lucky Meisenheimer and Ross Bohlken. Abrahms later set a final record as part of a mixed relay with Sheri Hart, Danielle Chance and Middleton. And finally, Blu Frog team members and former Olympians Tracey McFarlane (1988 Olympian) and Brooke Bennett (1996 and 2000 Olympian) partnered with Chance and Cathy Shonkwiler for a final new world record. Whew! What a fast meet!
12. Liz Pelton sets a new American Record in the 200 Back.
At the recent Georgia Invitational, Elizabeth Pelton (T2/Cal) swam a blazing time of 1:48.90 in the 200 Back to win the race by more than four seconds, and bettering her American Record. With the NCAA Championships still t come in 2013, we expect Pelton to break it yet again!
13. Stephanie Peacock breaks the NCAA Record in the 1650 Free.
At the recent Ohio State Invitational in Columbus, Stephanie Peacock (SwimFL/UNC) knocked time off her own NCAA record in the event with a 15:37.06. That swim bettered her previous record of 15:38.79 set while winning the event at NCAAs in March. What makes it even more impressive is that swim now stands as the fourth fastest time in history! (And did we mention she won the NCAA Championships in this event in early 2012?)
14. Megan Romano breaks the NCAA record in 200 Free.
Stephanie Peacock wasn’t the only girl from Florida getting the job done at college. Megan Romano (SPA/UGA) made a splash when she set a new NCAA record in the 200 Free going 1:41.21, also winning the NCAA Championships!
15. Vien Nguyen wins the first ever medal for Vietnam at the Asian Games.
As both a St. Augustine Cyclone Swimmer and Vietnam National team member, Vien Nguyen won a bronze medal in the womens 400 IM. By doing so, she was the first Vietnam swimmer to ever medal at the Asian Games… that’s pretty cool!
16. Matthew Hirschberger breaks an untouchable record.
13-year-old swimmer Matthew Hirschberger (CAT) broke the once thought of untouchable state record in the 1500 Free with a 16:02.09 (from Nicholas Caldwell’s 16.21.89-2007) only to later to break it again at the Speedo Junior Nationals with a 15:53.41! Amazingly fast!
This wraps up Part 2 of our year in review. Stay tuned for Part 3 where we take a look at Worlds in Istanbul, college swimming, inspirational moments, friends we will deeply miss, as well as the most fun moments from 2012. Remember, if you have have a memory to share, be sure to post it on our Facebook page.
As the year draws to a close, Florida Swim Network is taking a look back at 2012 and compiling our most memorable swim moments – outstanding performances put forth by athletes from the state of Florida.
We’re sure we didn’t get all of them, so feel free to post your favorite memories on our Facebook page.
While six swimmers who train in the state of Florida represented Team USA in London, there were two swim moments that stood out above the rest.
1. Ryan Lochte winning gold in the 400 IM.
This was the very first night of competition, and Ryan Lochte (USA/DBS) destroyed the rest of the field, Michael Phelps included. The way Lochte pulled away and then won by several body lengths left no doubt that he had just done something very special. Lochte has a had year of memorable moments, and you can click here to read our favorites.
2. Elizabeth Beisel winning a silver medal in the 400 IM.
This next Olympic moment is memorable due to a shocking turn of events. Elizabeth Beisel (USA/UF) was in the lead until China’s Ye Shiwen turned on the jets and nearly flew back to the wall on the final 50 Free. Indeed, this 16-year-old went so fast she beat Ryan Lochte by 17 hundredths of a second in that final stretch of pool. Not only that, Ye obliterated the World Record. While suspicion and rumors circled Ye, Beisel took the high road by remaining silent and instead proudly smiling on the second place podium.
“She had the race of her life,” said Beisel, who led by .81 seconds after 300 meters and was beaten by 2.84 seconds. “Congratulations to her a million times over. It’s definitely hard getting second, but I can’t complain at all. The race was really hard, and maybe it didn’t go the way I wanted it to, but I’m definitely appreciative with how the outcome was.”
Beisel raced a personal best and it took a World Record to beat her – we’re definitely proud of that!
There were many swimmers from Florida who competed well at Olympic Trials, Dara Torres and Erika Erndl among them. And just as Torres and Erndl have raised the bar for older athletes, this time it is the younger ones who stood out for their performances.
3. Ryan Murphy placing fourth in the 200 Back.
Ryan Murphy (BSS) was seeded third going into the finals, and so the entire state of Florida tuned in with high hopes and fingers crossed. And while we knew it was a long shot, with Tyler Clary and Ryan Lochte in the finals, we still held our breath as Murphy (1:57.39) was just out-touched for third by Nick Thoman (1:57.06). Regardless, it was still thrilling to watch!
4. Becca Mann finaling in three events at Olympic Trials.
Ryan Murphy wasn’t the only young swimmer the state of Florida was rooting for; we also rallied around Becca Mann, (CAT) who made the finals in the 400 IM, 400 Free, and 800 Free. While she didn’t finish higher than fifth in any event, she still broke the National Age Group Record in the 800 Free by going 8:28.54 and breaking Sippy Woodhead’s record which had stood since 1978.
5. Ryan Murphy won the 200 Back claiming a Share of the High Point Award.
It has been quite a year for Ryan Murphy, we’re sure the first of many to come! This was the year that marked his debut on the true national stage – Olympic Trials and Senior Nationals. At the Winter Nationals, Murphy won the 200 Back while also setting a new National Age Group Record, and then was all smiles as he tied for the High Point with Matt Grevers.
Murphy’s 138.15 was the first 18 and under to break 1:40 and also made him the third fastest in history of the event. Well played, Ryan Murphy. Well played.
Photo from Sergio Lopez Miro.
6. Becca Mann claims three titles.
Just like Ryan Murphy, Becca Mann had a break out year and her performance at the Junior Pan Pac Games was no exception. Although she took second to Leah Smith in the 800 Free, she dominated the rest of the meet. Mann claimed the 400 IM title with a meet-record time of 4:39.76, and then won the 1500 Free in 16:11.89. This was a new 13-14 U.S. National Age Group Record, which downed the 28-year-old national age group record of Michele Richardson (16:12.57) set back in 1984. For her third victory of the meet, Mann obliterated the rest of the field in the Open Water 10k with a winning time of 1:57:22. Wow!
7. Dylan Carter setting a new National Age Group Record.
Florida saw lots of great performance from many swimmers at this year’s Short Course Junior Nats, but none stood out as much as Dylan Carter’s. Carter (DANA) won the 200 Freestyle in 1:35.29 and then just barely missed beating out Ryan Murphy’s 100 Back old record (46.72) by touching in at 47.22 to win gold. Just awesome!
8. Bolles Sharks cruise to dominance by sweeping men’s relays.
Just as they rocked the pool at the high school 1A state meet, Bolles Sharks dominated the Men’s relays in Knoxville. First Bolles won the 200 Medley, as Joseph Schooling, Marijn Van Zundert, Santo Condorelli and Caeleb Dressel topped the finale in 1:27.80. Then Condorelli, Josh Booth, Schooling and Dressel cruised to victory in the 800 Free relay with a time of 6:37.77. Next in the 200 Free Relay, Bolles took down a pair of meet records in a single swim. Dressel, Condorelli, Emiro Goossen, and Joseph Schooling downed the meet record with a 1:19.03, while Dressel secured a new 50 Free record with his 19.92 lead off. Then Bolles continued their dominance in the 400 Free - breaking the meet record in 2:55.89 with Booth, Dressel, Condorelli, and Schooling swimming. And, to show complete dominance, they also win the 400 Medley Relay in a time of 3:15.83 as Dressel, Van Zundert, Schooling, and Condorelli flexed their swim muscles. Wow. Just wow.
Photo from Sergio Lopez Miro
Guys, just sign up for something.
Just do it now.
I think that is the root of everything physical, especially when you get older. I have a problem with it, too!
Man, if I had a quarter for every time I heard someone say, “I can’t sign up for a running race, cycling masters race, a triathlon or even a Masters swim meet; I’m out of shape!”
Out of shape?
What signing up for an event does is get you mentally committed to actually doing it! What that will also do is get you motivated to doing something about it every day. So many times people start something and then get bored because there is nothing on the horizon helping them getting through the monotony.
Pssst! I have the same problem.
I have trouble heading to the pool to swim; however, when I sign up for something, it finally gets me on a schedule and gets me organized with my training and focused as well. Over the past 15 years, I have been up and down with my training, and I can relate it all to what is on my schedule. I bet most of you are the same way!
Don’t waste your life saying, “I can’t do it until I get into shape.” That’s bad news! As another example, a friend of mine, Corey Warren, said just this past year, “I’m going to do a Ironman 70.3 and then I am going to do a full Ironman.” Just in case you didn’t know, that’s a 2.4 mile swim, 112 mile bike, 26.2 mile run. I said to him, “Uh, what?” So now, Corey has the half is done and is competing this weekend in Ironman Florida. Good luck Corey! I can’t wait to see how you do!
But, that is exactly what I am talking about. You can’t wait, guys!
Get in shape now. Don’t wait to sign up for something and don’t be afraid either. As a last example, I have a Masters Swim Team that could destroy a good amount of the competition. But they keep telling me….”No, no, I am not ready!” They are wasting their great ability, and missing the fun!
A race or competition or even a fundraiser will motivate you. If you wait until you’re “in shape” it may never come to your liking and therefore, NEVER will never happen.
Let me know your progress and do it now!
by Joe Auer, SwimmerJoe
Photo: The Associated Press
Have you ever become obsessed with accomplishing a goal? Have you ever been so focused that it haunts your nights and consumes your days? It eats away at you until you have no choice but to try and conquer it? Have you ever been so determined that nothing will stand in your way, and not even age will set a boundary?
Well, driving home from swim practice today, I heard the Orlando’s WDBO radio personality Scott Anez talk about the failed fourth attempt of Diana Nyad trying to cross the Florida straits at the age of 62. He said, “I think, Diana, it’s time to hang up the goggles.”
Uh, Scott, why would you say this? Because she didn’t make it all the way to Florida? Because she could only swim for sixty hours straight? Because the only reason she got out was because her team forced her to abandon due to the thunder and lightning that made it too dangerous for her crew to even be out there? How is this a failing on Diana’s part?
How could Scott possibly think Diana should give up and not try again? How could he think that she doesn’t have what it takes to achieve her dreams, just because she didn’t on her fourth attempt. (Uh, how many times did it take Thomas Edison to perfect the light bulb? Glad he didn’t give up after the fourth time!)
So, according to Scott we should just give up because we can’t achieve something immediately… or because we are too old. I just don’t get his argument. Should Olympic swimmer Dara Torres (age 44) have stopped competing earlier? (Mind you she swam faster at the Olympic Trials in 2008 than she ever had, plus and American Record at age 41.)
What about the NFL’s George Blanda, age 48? Satchel Page, age 59? Martina Navratilova, age 49? Or even George Foreman, age 48? (What was it he said after his last match? That he was laughing all the way to the bank!)
All of these extraordinary individuals did awesome achievements well past their so-called prime. They continued doing what they love to do, and who are we to tell them to stop, hang up the cleats, or throw in the towel?
So, Scott, what if WDBO said to you that you should hang up the mic because they are hiring somebody younger? What would you do? Go to the old folks’ home and play checkers while waiting for the dinner bell? No, you love what you do so you would find another market because radio is a part of you. That’s called passion and who are we to judge another’s heart and determination?
By the way, at the age of 62, Diana Nyad went further in time than she did in 1978 as a youngin’. This time it took box jelly-fish, 3 storms with lightning, and major sharks all at the same time on her 3rd day without sleep, for her crew to finally pull her out of the ocean.
Shame on you, Scott. Let’s see you try swimming for one hour straight, let alone sixty plus! If that’s too hard, I guess there’s always checkers!