I had a busy racing weekend recently. I marshalled at our club’s excellent cross country event on the Saturday then ran a half marathon the next day.
The cross country was a great event with races for juniors from under 13 right up to the vets where I don’t think there’s an age limit. I was stationed up in the woods at the highest part of the course. When they got to me the runners had been climbing for almost half a mile so I got to see many knackered people striving hard to stay strong hoping their legs would carry them round the rest of the course…. until they had to go round again and up the hill for the second, third or fourth time.
I was struck how amazing the older people were. All these ladies in their 50s, 60s and possibly more were a) still running b) still racing and c) still racing cross country which is So Tough. And in the men’s race there were even more older chaps.
What was even more gob-smacking was the number of people, including some of the older people, who then raced the half marathon the next day. Who says running’s bad for you?! I really hope I’m still racing when I’m in my seventies.
Oh, and the chap (one of the older ones) who brought up the rear in the mens race in the cross country was out spectating and cheering at the half marathon. He was the most energetic and noisy spectator out there! His wife was out cheering, too. Wonder if she was racing in the ladies’ team? They were awesome and clearly not tired after the exploits of the day before.