Previous occupation: Systems engineer and trade show manager, Intel
Age at retirement: 59Retirement can prove more expensive than anticipated. "Think about the full cost of what you want to do, and build it into your financial plan," says Joanna Rotenberg a consultant who headed a McKinsey study on retirement.
Dennis Wyman originally planned to retire at age 62. But when his company laid off more than 10,000 employees, he had to retire early. Fortunately, his wife is working full time. And he had managed to build up more than $400,000 in his 401(k) and another few hundred thousand in his IRA, so they weren't in financial straits. Still, "We need [our nest egg] to keep growing," he says.
He decided to work, under one condition: It had to have an element of play. An avid cyclist - he has twice completed the 450-mile Cycle Oregon - he has long enjoyed fixing bicycles. His new career: mechanic at a local bike shop. "Learning something new is exciting," he says.