Pole-vaulting granny: It's 'never too late'

Story highlights

  • Flo Meiler, 79, holds 15 world records and 12 U.S. records in track and field
  • Meiler loves the pole vault and the hurdles because they're the most challenging
  • She was 65 years old when she started pole vaulting
Flo Meiler is 79 years old. She's a grandmother to five, great-grandmother to two. She's also a pole-vaulting, hurdle-jumping track and field star.
In 2011, she set the world indoor record in the pole vault for women over the age of 75. She set the world record for the 60-meter hurdles and the 4x100 meter relay that same year. She has also set records in the steeplechase, the discus, the 200-meter hurdles and the hammer throw.
In total, Meiler holds 15 world records and 12 U.S. records -- not bad for a woman who picked up pole vaulting at 65.
Meiler, of Shelburne, Vermont, and more than 10,000 other seniors are taking their athletic prowess to Cleveland this weekend for the 2013 National Senior Games. CNN spoke with Meiler about her love of the long jump, her favorite world record and why other people thinks she's, well, "a little nuts." The following is an edited version of that interview:
CNN: Have you been active your whole life, or is this a new development?
Flo Meiler: Oh, I think I've been pretty active, but more active since I took up track and field at age 60. Believe it or not, I'm more active now.
CNN: How did you get into the sport so late?
Meiler: I was playing tennis -- singles, doubles and mixed doubles with my husband -- for the senior Olympics, and my training partner now, Barb