Some people take the fountain of youth pretty seriously:
Fauja Singh, a 100-year-old runner of Indian-origin has set a new Guinness record of being the oldest person to complete a full-distance marathon here.
It took Fauja Singh over eight hours to cross the finish line, more than six hours after Kenya’s Kenneth Mungara won the Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon yesterday for the fourth straight year.
Fauja Singh was the last competitor to complete the course but entered the Guinness Book of World Records.
Hat tip to Jasleen for the pointer.
Fauja’s quite adept at setting world records. A few days before he set eight in one day:
Singh began by breezing through 100 metres in 23.40 seconds. Usain Bolt holds the all-ages record at 9.58 seconds. Singh destroyed the previous record for a 100-year-old by more than six seconds. The races became progressively longer and culminated in the 5,000-metre event.
He scared the crowd in that event when he needed to walk for a few laps. But it was just a leg cramp, which abated after a calf massage and a glass of salt water.
“I didn’t push myself hard enough today,” Singh said in Punjabi to a chorus of laughter.
If that’s not cute enough, he runs in memory of his deceased wife.
He also adheres to a diet and lifestyle philosophy of simplicity:
He has been quoted as saying “I am very careful about different foods. My diet is simple phulka,dal, green vegetables, yoghurt and milk. I do not touch parathas, pakoras, rice or any other fried food. I take lots of water and tea with ginger. … I go to bed early taking the name of my Rabba as I don’t want all those negative thoughts crossing my mind.”
Speaking about the marathon, he said: “The first 20 miles are not difficult. As for last six miles, I run while talking to God.”
His book, the Turbaned Tornado, is here.