"Think of them as role models for an aging America," writes journalist Lee Bergquist.

In Second Wind: The Rise of the Ageless Athlete (Human Kinetics, May 2009) Bergquist takes us on a fascinating and inspiring journey into the lives of older men and women who push their bodies with the vigor and passion of youth.

There is no silver bullet to living a long and healthy life, but experts agree that regular exercise is good ammunition. This is especially important as obesity rates climb, and over the next two decades, the Social Security Administration estimates that 10,000 Baby Boomers will become eligible for retirement every day.

Bergquist, an award winning newspaper reporter, profiles an array of athletes who have used their sport and training regimens to turn back the aging clock. Their stories upend old notions about growing old. Certainly there are those who are blessed with good genes and incredible talent. "But many," he writes, "simply find that an athletic act, executed with old bones and muscle, can give meaning to life in ways that love and religion can not."

Their stories include:

  • A plumber who took up running marathons and weightlifting after a heart transplant.

  • A retired Washington State Supreme Court Justice, plagued with chronic neck and back pain, who started lifting weights and eventually became a champion power lifter.

  • A trio of men in their 50s who are swimming faster than their college days. One swimmer sold his southern California car dealership and became a life guard. His goal is to become the oldest person to swim the English Channel.

  • A 75-year-old grandmother who beat cancer, survived a skull fracture and continues to compete in long-distance ski races.


For more information on Second Wind: The Rise of the Ageless Athlete or other sports and fitness books, visit www.HumanKinetics.com or call 800-747-4457.