I was having a crappy morning. For the first time in years, I overslept and missed a phone meeting and a breakfast meeting. To top it off, my phone stopped working.
I had a phone interview scheduled with Bruce Grierson, the author of “What Makes Olga Run,” and I was running late to catch a train.
I first found Olga’s story through Growing Bolder, At 91, Olga is a World Champion Athlete. Her story intrigued me because I unwrapped an old passion for an extreme sport at the age of 44 and gained a whole new outlook of what it meant to grow bolder instead of older. Olga took up softball and track in her 70’s and went on to set many new World records in track and field. In March of this year, Olga set eight new records while competing in Budapest.
Bruce opened our interview with sobering news: Olga passed away five days before from a brain aneurysm. Definitely sudden and very unexpected. My heart sank.
Bruce was one of the many fortunate ones whose lives were touched by Olga.
“The two of us met when I was struggling with my own health,” Bruce said. “I lost my fitness, and my bad eating and sleep habits caught up with me. I was discouraged. when i met Olga, she quickly reframed my circumstances and my outlook. She was very positive.”
Bruce is an example of Olga’s lessons in action. He changed his attitude, his health, and his sleep pattern. He made small changes in his daily habits, and created new ones. The changes had a ripple effect on his family.
Without a doubt, Olga left an impact on many. She inspired people to look at life with a whole new attitude of possibilities instead of limits.
“Olga taught me not to think that our horizons are shrinking–they aren’t. Mindset matters a lot,” Bruce said. “Become someone who can improve continusly all the way to the end of life. It’s choice worth making for all of us. I’ve been a nicer person to live with since then. All of those things I owe to Olga.”
Photo credit: Nick Procaylo, Vancouver Sun