Age is only a number for Flo Meiler.
Instead of slowing down, the 84-year-old super athlete is just getting started. She is a regular in Vermont Senior Games, competing in several events, including hurdles and pole vaulting.
Her story, which was featured on the BBC Three Facebook page, began after she decided to try track for the first time at age 60. Considered a late bloomer by most standards, Flo quickly stood out as a star.
“Never in my wildest dreams” did she imagine all of the time, training and travel that would come from a hobby she picked up to stay active when she retired after 30 years as a sales rep.
Always ready for a challenge, Flo was determined to compete in pole vaulting. She bought a “How to Pole Vault” video and taught herself the skills she’d need to make her dream a reality. She set a world record for a six-foot pole vault clearance when she was 60.
With around 750 track and field medals hanging around her home, Flo says she has no plans to slow down. She wants to continue setting records, and in many cases, she will be striving to beat her own. To date, Flo holds 26 world records and 20 US records.
“She works out more than anybody I’ve ever known,” said Eugene, her husband of 60 years. “I tell her, ‘Just try to go out there and do better than you did before. Don’t worry about the records.’ She says ‘Well, if I’m gonna go out there and get better, I might as well break the records!’”
Her story is motivation for us all.
“You’re never too old,” Flo told BBC in an Amazing Humans video that has garnered over 4 million views on Facebook. “Listen, I was 60 years old when I started and look what I’m doing now. I want to keep pole vaulting as long as I can – maybe if the good Lord permits, until I’m 100.”