A 100-year-old runner Fauja Singh became the first centenarian and, therefore, oldest person to complete a marathon when he finished the Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon.
Born in India in 1911, Mr Singh was a farmer in the Punjab but moved to Britain in the 1960s.
Singh, who is a British citizen, finished the race in a dashing time of 8 hours, 11 minutes and 5.9 seconds and became the world’s oldest marathon runner.
Fauja Singh’s translator and coach Harmander Singh said that Fauja Singh had targeted nine hours as his finish-time goal. He definitely exceeded that goal. No matter. The media was there to greet the man who, apparently, is “affectionately known as the Turbaned Tornado.”
The record-holder “hit the wall” at 22 miles but soldiered on for another two hours and finished in 3,850th place, ahead of five other competitors.
Mr Singh, who took up running 11 years ago after his wife and son died, trains every day by running 10 miles.
Harmandar Singh: ”Running has given him a new focus in life”. “He’s achieved his life-long wish “.
According to the race’s Web site, Singh took up running at the “ripe old age of 89.
He holds the world record for the over-90 category after running the 2003 Toronto marathon in five hours and 40 minutes. His latest feat earns him another spot in Guinness World Records.
Singh jogs or walks an average of eight to 10 miles per day. And he plans to keep running for what he considers a simple reason.
“I will carry on running,” he told the marathon’s Web site, “as it is keeping me alive.”
He puts his stamina down to ginger curry, tea and “being happy”.
Mr Singh said: “The secret to a long and healthy life is to be stress-free. Be grateful for everything you have, stay away from people who are negative, stay smiling and keep running.”
As for Singh, he will participate in the torch relay for the 2012 Olympics in London. And he plans to keep running and trying to break records, all of which he does for charity.
Fauja singh has etched his name in history and redefined the words inspiration and endurance.