At 6’0”, 168 pounds and 68 years old, the svelte Jimmy Goldman (A’60)—yes, everyone still calls him Jimmy—is the picture of fitness and health. He says genetics plays a big role in his health, but he certainly deserves all the credit when it comes to being fit.
Goldman, who earned swimming ribbons in the 200- and 500-yard freestyles in his age group at the 2005 Senior Olympics held this past June in Pittsburgh, is an avid swimmer, bicyclist and walker. His exercise regimen, aggressive for even someone half his age, measures 55 miles each week. He swims five miles, walks 15 miles and bikes 35 miles per week, often with his wife Susie, who also won Senior Olympic honors in the 200 freestyle and triathlon.
“It’s a lot of exercise, but I like doing it because it’s not a lot of the same thing. It makes me feel good and it keeps me hanging around younger folks,” says Goldman, who began biking in his mid-30s on a three-speed he purchased at Sears. Today, he estimates that he’s biked more than 75,000 miles with his wife in and around his native Pittsburgh, and during trips to New Zealand, Australia, France, Italy, California and Canada. Next month he and Susie are off to Ireland.
Called a “transitional senior” by his three grown children, Goldman is a member of the South Hills YMCA swimming team and an annual competitor in the Jewish Community Center (JCC) Indoor Triathlon, JCC master’s swimming meets and the Lake Arthur two-mile swim, which he’s won every year in his age group. He won this year’s Lake Arthur event the day after the Senior Olympics.
Goldman is also founder and organizer of Carnegie Mellon’s 1,650-yard Challenge, an annual fundraising event for the varsity swimming team. This January will mark the event’s 10th anniversary.
How does he find the time for his rigorous athletic schedule? As an architect who specializes in the design of sports facilities, Goldman has been able to “combine his vocation with his avocation.”
The athletic architect, who often walks and bikes to client meetings from his home office in the Squirrel Hill section of Pittsburgh, has designed sports facilities for many schools and universities, including the digs in Carnegie Mellon’s University Center. “I understand facilities from the user’s point of view,” he says.
Goldman qualified for this year’s Senior Olympics by placing first or second in his age group in six swimming events at the Pennsylvania Senior Olympics at Shippensburg University last summer. But he chose to only compete in the 100 (12th place), 200 (8th place) and 500 (5th place) freestyles, posting personal best times in each event.
“I chose to swim one event each day. Even masters athletes get nervous,” he says.
More Senior Olympians
Jimmy Goldman wasn’t the only alumnus to participate in the 2005 Senior Olympics in Pittsburgh. Others were swimmers Ken Kantrowitz (A’63) and Barry Shields (A’89).
In his age group (65-69), Kantrowitz placed 6th in the 100 butterfly, 10th in the 50 fly, 10th in the 200 breaststroke, 14th in the 50 breast and 16th in the 100 breast.
Shields (50-54 age group) finished 2nd in the 500 freestyle, 4th in the 200 freestyle and 200 backstroke, and 5th in the 50 and 100 backstrokes.