2013 National Senior Games: Humana Game Changer Flo Meiler

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Pole vaulter Flo Meiler cleared the bar at 5 feet, 10 ¾ inches, took a few seconds to celebrate winning a gold medal in the 2013 National Senior Games, then picked up her bag and rushed to her fifth track and field event of the day.

Watching the 79-year-old great-grandmother from Shelburne, Vermont, compete makes it easy to see why her 10-year-old granddaughter has trouble keeping up with her when she joins her at the track. During one week of competition in Cleveland last week, Meiler competed in 10 track and field events and won medals or ribbons in all 10. Her final results: gold medals in the high jump, pole vault, and triple jump; silver medals in the long jump and hammer; fourth place in the 100-meter, 200-meter and discus; and seventh place in shotput and javelin.

Meiler, who didn’t start participating in track and field events until she was 60, said she is proud to have been named one of five Humana Game Changers because she hopes her story will inspire people of all ages to get healthy and get going. She is living proof that it is never too late to start a new sport – or a new way of life.