It’s Never too Late to…

Recently, we saw a story on AARP about Ernestine Shepherd, who holds the title of the world’s oldest female bodybuilder. Pretty amazing, right? Ernestine is currently 74, and she didn’t start bodybuilding until she was in her 50’s!

Those who think that you can only reach huge life accomplishments before retirement are very wrong! Retirees can absolutely set big goals and achieve them with hard work, just as they always have.  If you need some motivation for doing BIG things during your retirement, here are a few of our favorite success stories to show you it’s never too late to…


Publish a Book

You’ve heard of Laura Ingalls Wilder’s “Little House on the Prairie” books, but did you know that Laura didn’t begin writing them until 1931, when she was 64 years old? Laura was a previous editor of the St. Louis Star, and her daughter had encouraged her to share her life story through the young adult novels. She wrote them all by 1943, when she was 76! Talk about a late bloomer.



Olive Riley shared her thoughts and ideas on a blog until she passed away in 2008 – at 108 years old. Olive started blogging in 2007, and at the time of her death, she had posted more than 70 entries about her life. The Australian woman’s tales included stories of both World War I and World War II, growing up without today’s luxuries and technologies, and raising three children on her own. What kind of story do YOU have to tell the world?


Start a Company 

After a lengthy and successful career in marketing, Cinde Dolphin started her own company at 55 to help winemakers in California promote their businesses online.

According to the New York Times, “More than five million Americans age 55 or older run their own businesses or are otherwise self-employed, according to the Small Business Administration.And the number of self-employed people ages 55 to 64 is soaring, the agency says, climbing 52 percent from 2000 to 2007.”

Is there a business you’ve always had the dream of starting, but didn’t have the time? The time could be now!


Graduate from College

Kansas resident Nola Ochs graduated from Fort Hays State University in 2007 with a bachelor’s in General Studies and concentration in history. She was 95 years old. While a 96-year-old man broke her record in 2009, Nola’s accomplishment is tremendous. And she didn’t stop there. She received her master’s degree in 2010.

According to the FHSU website, Nola said, “I’m very gratified to have attained that distinction. I would like, in the long run, to encourage people to keep on learning. Our education is never complete.”


Learn a New Skill

While she didn’t learn to cook after 50, Julia Child DID put off finding her skill until she was in her mid-30’s. In fact, Julia said, “I was 32 when I started cooking; up until then, I just ate.” Her show “The French Chef” didn’t premiere until she was 51.

We wrote a previous post about hobbies you might consider starting during your retirement. Just because you didn’t master something as a young adult, that doesn’t mean that you can’t be a pro at it soon!


There is a reason why these are called the “golden years.” Now get out there and shine!