Senior Lifestyles

Thanks to seniors group, things are going swimmingly

Photo by Monique Schoenfeld, Town Crier

Barbara Callison, 66, says the organization, Fifty-Plus Fitness, has encouraged her since 1983

Los Altos resident Barbara Callison has always loved to exercise. But when a friend introduced her to competitive swimming in 1973, she had no idea what to expect.

More than a quarter century later, the 66-year-old Callison is still actively competing in an array of swimming events, including the triathlon.

"I have always enjoyed the water," Callison said. She was a swim team coach before she moved to the Bay Area.

This year Callison competed in the U.S. Masters Meet May 13-16 at the Santa Clara International Swim Center. She won the 100-meter butterfly event and finished second or third in five other events including the 50-meter freestyle and 400-meter individual medley.

Although Callison has not competed in a triathlon since she won the event last year, she continues to train vigorously. She swims five mornings a week at Eagle Pool in Mountain View, and she also runs quite often.

Callison does not always train by herself. She is a member of Fifty-Plus Fitness, a nonprofit organization that promotes all types of exercise among men and women over the age of 50.

"I believe in what the (Fifty-Plus Fitness) stands for," Callison said. The organization has been an important part of her life since she joined in 1983, she said.

"Without their encouragement, I would not have run in the San Francisco Marathon last year," Callison said.

In addition to her training, Callison has written a book called "Swim for Life." The book is sold at Fifty-Plus Fitness and encourages readers to swim in order to improve their lifestyles.

The Stanford-based Fifty-Plus Fitness welcomes new members. The group offers weekly walks, jogs and swims in different locations throughout the Bay Area. For more information, call 323-6160.

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