“Growing Bolder:” It’s Never Too Late to Live Your Dreams

Ben Beach holds one of the most amazing records in sports and it’s a record he breaks every year. Now in his mid-60s, the man who has run 48 straight Boston Marathons explains why and how he keeps going.

Nik Wallenda is an acrobat, aerialist, daredevil, high wire artist, and author. The “King of the High Wire” plans for what may be most dangerous stunt yet — a high wire walk over an active volcano in Nicaragua.

Sky Bergman was lucky enough to have a grandmother not only still living, but still going to the gym, at the age of 99. Sky turned her camera on her grandmother and other older adults and discovered what it means to live “a life well lived.”

Stories abound about seniors who make the most of their retirement and live life to the fullest. What these three and others have in common is that they subscribe to a philosophy of “why grow older, when you can grow bolder?”

“Growing Bolder” Features Ordinary Seniors Who Live Extraordinary Lives

“Growing Bolder,” a PBS tv show is now airing coast-to-coast on public broadcasting stations, and shows from past seasons can be viewed online.“Growing Bolder” inspires viewers to realize that “it’s never too late to make the rest of your life the best of your life.” Growing Bolder specializes in active lifestyle health and well-being content, and it’s about pursuing passions and chasing dreams. It’s about living the biggest, boldest life possible and proving that age is not a disease, but an opportunity.

Hosted by journalist and “Growing Bolder” founder Marc Middleton, “Growing Bolder” features inspirational stories and life lessons. These are a sampling of some of the inspirational stories of the extraordinary seniors you’ll see on the show:

The Keys to Active Longevity, with Rowdy Gaines, Olympic Gold Medalist swimmer: In a pool filled with former high school, college, and even Olympic athletes, an unlikely relay team stood out at the Rowdy Gaines Masters Classic. With a combined age of more than 360, John Corse, Ed Graves, Betty Lorenzi and Joan Campbell had the chance to smash two things: a world record and expectations for what 80- and 90-year-olds can do. This relay team inspired people a quarter of their age and younger to start Growing Bolder.
Don’t Stop Believing, with Don Cupo, Piccolo Player: A year ago, 48-year old Don Cupo lost his job and his optimism. But then he decided to take action and a leap of faith. He enrolled at the University of Central Florida to pursue his passion — film and music. And since he was already being bold, he decided to chase another dream. He tried out for and made the marching band. Now he’s pushing himself in ways he never thought possible, and he’s got a message for anyone who’s lost hope — don’t stop believing.
WWII Vet’s Final Mission: Preserving Women’s History: Betty Wall Strohfus was one of a handful of female pilots in World War II. After the war, she thought that part of her life was over. She was in her 70s when she felt compelled to honor her fellow WASPs by telling her story. At 91, when the show was filmed, she was even more proud and passionate than ever. Betty said no one thought that women could fly airplanes. But they proved them wrong, eventually flying 77 different kinds of aircraft. Betty shared what she learned by being a woman who smashed stereotypes and offered her tips for women still struggling for equality in all walks of life.
Julia “Hurricane” Hawkins- 103-Year Old Track Star: Julia Hawkins recently won the 100-meter dash at the USA Track and Field Masters Championships, setting a new world record. At 101 years old, she took 6 seconds off the world record in the 100-meter in the women’s 100-104 age group and in the process, also became the oldest competitor in USA Track and Field history. In the episode, she explains why she started running and entering competitions at the age of 100. Plus, find out how she got her nickname Hurricane. Also, read more about Julia in our article about her, featuring lessons for longevity.

The next time someone invites you to do something outside your comfort zone, say “Yes!”

Marc Middleton, founder of “Growing Bolder,” offered the following challenge: “(t)he next time someone invites you to do something out of your comfort zone, say “yes.” Say “yes” to opportunity, adventure, new friends, and new experiences. As we get older, “no” becomes our default answer to just about everything. Say “no” enough times and your world will gradually shrink. You’ll end up alone watching the world from your couch. Say “yes” and you’ll be exposed to new people, new places, new things, and new ideas that you never even imagined.

Dr. Roger Landry, show contributor agrees. He says, “(t)he older we get, the more likely it is that we reach our goals — and that’s a good thing! But if you stop trying new things, or setting new plans, you may start losing the spark that keeps you happy and healthy.”

Do You Want to Live a Bold Life?

If you do, hopefully some of the stories from “Growing Bold” will be inspirational for you. Whether you are adventurous or simply enjoy staying at home, we wish all our readers a long, healthy, and fulfilling life.

Remember, as you are making the most of your senior years and enjoying life, it is also a good idea to plan for your future and for your loved ones. Our firm is dedicated to helping protect seniors by preserving dignity, quality of life, and financial security. If you have not done Long-Term Care Planning, Estate Planning, or Incapacity Planning (or had your Planning documents reviewed in the past several years), or if you have a loved one who is nearing the need for long-term care or already receiving long-term care, please call us to make an appointment for a no-cost initial consultation:

Elder Law Attorney Fairfax: 703-691-1888
Elder Law Attorney Fredericksburg: 540-479-1435
Elder Law Attorney Rockville: 301-519-8041
Elder Law Attorney DC: 202-587-2797

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