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Blog: ‘Second wind’ in your 50s is putting the wind up me!

17:34 11 September 2015

The over 50s are getting more adventurous rather than showing signs of slowing down, according to a Vauxhall survey.

The over 50s are getting more adventurous rather than showing signs of slowing down, according to a Vauxhall survey.


At 54, motoring editor Andy Russell is the right age to get his ‘second wind’ but is it a breath of fresh air or a bit of a blow?

Top 25 activities over 50s are enjoying

1 Booking last-minute holidays.

2 Signing up to social media.

3 Dipping into the ‘life savings’ for treats.

4 Booking a big travel trip.

5 Buying clothes from the high street.

6 Flirting with someone younger.

7 Going to music festivals.

8 Taking selfies.

9 Camping.

10 Going on a girls/lads holiday.

11 Learning a foreign language.

12 Going on a road trip.

13 Giving excuses not to babysit.

14 Going to Zumba.

15 Taking up a new sport.

16 Reading graphic novels.

17 Getting a tattoo.

18 Hitting karaoke bars.

19 Going clubbing.

20 Learning to play an instrument.

21 Swimming with sharks.

22 Going scuba diving/snorkelling.

23 Skinny-dipping.

24 Signing-up to online dating.

25 Starting a Salsa class.

At a time of my life when I seem to have more aches and pains and my body well beyond its peak – if indeed it ever got there in the first place – I am now officially getting my ‘second wind’. I don’t know whether this is good or bad news.

To tie in with reviving the Viva name for its all-new city car, Vauxhall conducted a This Gran Can survey of 2,000 adults aged over 50 and found they are more likely to get their first tattoo, swim with sharks or hit a karaoke bar than show signs of slowing down.

Apparently this ‘second wind’ hits at 54 – my age. Maybe that’s why I’ve bought another motorbike... ‘second wind’ sounds better than ‘mid-life crisis’.

Anyway, four out of five 50-year-olds feel the same now as in their early 20s and are less cautious than their twenty-something counterparts.

Almost a quarter confess to using savings to experience new adventures – including going to Glastonbury for the first time, booking a lads or girls’ holiday and taking a gap year – rather than salting it away for future investments. And almost a quarter have started acting out of character.

And 60% said they were less restricted than their parents and grandparents at the same age, with more freedom to travel, wear what they want and be more adventurous.

Celebrities epitomising this generation were Helen Mirren, Joanna Lumley, David Attenborough and Richard Branson. When the Vauxhall Viva first launched more than 50 years ago, stars such as Alec Guinness and Fanny Cradock epitomised the over-50s age group of the Sixties with more modest aspirations.


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