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“I gave my two-weeks’ notice at work, went to the airport, and never looked back.”
Meredith, Flight Instructor

A big job or a career change later in life can create big insecurity. What if your career change doesn’t work out or you can’t land a steady paycheck by following your passion? Despite the uncertainty, more and more Americans are opting for a career change later in life. In fact, people between the ages of 55-64 make up almost 50% of recent career pivots, according to a reader poll by Marc Miller for his website, careerpivot.com1.

Meredith and Dana took a literal leap of faith when they decided to fulfill their pilot dreams by pursuing a career change later in life. Both earned their flight instructor credentials after decades of working in unrelated fields. Eventually, they opened their own flight school, Holladay Aviation. The couple was recently featured in the BOOST® Be UP For IT series, highlighting people who go after their dreams and stay healthy while they do it.

Elevate Your Nutrition to Soar Into a Second Career

A career change journey: office hallway to airport runway

As told by Meredith and Dana:

Meredith: I worked as a programmer. Eventually, I got to the point where I could either take advanced classes through work to get a management job, or I could invest that same amount of energy into getting my commercial pilot certificate and my flight instructor certificate. I gave my two-weeks’ notice at work, went to the airport, and never looked back.

Dana: Shortly after I moved to Chicago, I went out to one of the little airports in the suburbs and found a flight instructor and started taking flying lessons. Down the road, I got enough flight time and experience to take a flight test to become an instructor. The day that I passed my flight instructor flight test, I started teaching my friends how to fly on the side. I eventually got so busy I quit my job. Now we do this full time.

I used to actually think that my best years were behind me, but now I know they were just the beginning.

Finding the courage to take a chance on a career change

Meredith: We’ve all been afraid of stuff and let it get to us, but once you just open your mind and you say, “So what?” Once you get over that hump, then everything is available to you. Be up for a challenge, even a career change. Be up for trying something new.

Elevate Your Nutrition to Soar Into a Second Career

See how Meredith and Dana maintain their health while pursuing their passion

Career changes later in life require diet adjustments

Dana: Meredith helps us eat healthy and watches what we’re eating.

Meredith: It’s very important that we manage our health and stay healthy, particularly in our business where staying healthy is the only way you can keep working.

Elevate Your Nutrition to Soar Into a Second Career


When people like Meredith and Dana go from relatively sedentary to increasingly active careers later in life, they need to adjust their diets to match. According to Karen Lundgren, Medical Affairs, US Consumer Care Business for Nestlé Health Science and Registered Dietitian Nutritionist (RDN), “It’s hard to find good nutrition when you’re always on the go the way that pilots—and flight instructors—are.”

“Our BOOST MAX™ Nutritional Shake is a good choice for Meredith and Dana,” continues Lundgren, “as it was specifically designed to support an active lifestyle. It contains 30 grams of high-quality protein with 24 vitamins & minerals plus only 1 g of sugar and 160 calories in each 11 fl oz bottle.”

Is your workplace a food desert?

Are vending machines your only option for a snack at work? Try throwing BOOST MAX™ Nutritional Shake into your purse, briefcase or flight bag so you are prepared for anything that comes your way. BOOST MAX™ Nutritional Shake provides 3-in-1 active nutrition. It contains B-Vitamins to support energy metabolism; high-quality protein plus Magnesium to help preserve lean muscle and promote muscle recovery after being active; and Calcium, Vitamin D and Vitamin K to support strong bones.

Boost Max