Terry and Cynthia Dove could be the senior poster couple for the New Smyrna Beach Chamber of Commerce.
Blonde, tanned and fit, they mirror the healthy living image for retiring in Florida.
The Doves met while running a marathon in California many years ago. Married for 23 years, they have two children in California, JT and Tracy, and four grandchildren. Mr. Dove is a retired California police officer, serving almost 35 years. Ms. Dove is semi-retired from a career in sales and marketing. They still love competing.
In August, Mr. Dove, 70, earned three gold medals on an indoor rowing machine, age group 70-74, and set two world records, one in the 2000 meter individual rowing, and one in the men’s 2000 meter doubles, in the World Police and Fire games in Chengdu, China. He also set a national record in rowing for his age group in San Diego this past June.
Ms. Dove, 61, went to Pattaya, Thailand in August as a member of Team USA for Senior C (60 years old and above) in the International Dragon Boat Federation, earning seven gold medals and a bronze in 2000, 1000, 500 and 200 meter categories. (A dragon boat is an elongated boat that will hold 20 paddlers, a drummer and a steer person.)
“We were the first Team U.S.A. over 60 to ever win a gold medal at the International Dragon Boat games,” she said with pride.
Always an athlete, Mr. Dove played football in high school and college, then played semi- pro for five years with the Quad City Mohawks and the Quad City Raiders in Illinois. Ms. Dove likes to bicycle in distance rides and says she does a lot of water workout in an outrigger on the Intracoastal Waterway. They both lift weights and swim and they both became certified rowing instructors.
Mr. Dove says he got into rowing after tearing his rotator cuff. His doctor told him to find another way to compete. They have both been into rowing for six or seven years.
The Doves left California, moved to Illinois to be near family, hated winters, and moved to Florida a number of years ago. They have lived two blocks from the ocean in New Smyrna Beach for a couple of years now, and both say they love it. They also say they want to stay active and keep competing as long as they can.
“Quest Chiropractic (in New Smyrna Beach) kept us going with massage, chiropractic treatment and therapies,” Ms. Dove said. “We were both pushing ourselves pretty hard.
“As you age, you have to be aware of your body,” she continued. “It was important (for us) to be able to get ‘retuned’ every week at Quest Chiropractic.”
Mr. Dove added, “If you’ve been a competitor all your life, as you get older, you have to listen to your body more.”
They both say managing the demands on your body, following a healthy diet and staying active are the keys to living healthy.
“The jewel of living in this area,” Ms. Dove said, “Is that you can be as active as you want year-round.”