Starting Running at 70

by Sylvia Endacott
(Bognor regis UK)

At the age of 69 I joined the gym and then ultimately decided to try the local 5k park run. I have now joined a local running group. It is not easy, but due to injury I am currently marshalling at the Parkrun and the Junior Parkrun. What is great, is the encouragement from 'those much younger'. I am struggling and have not yet achieved a 5k run - managed the route in 51 mins, run and walking. But fully enjoy the atmosphere.

Comments for Starting Running at 70

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Jun 12, 2017
You are an inspiration Sylvia!
by: Nicole

Sylvia you are a total inspiration and I so hope I am still running at your age :). Very well done for doing a 5km - walk/run is a really good solution whilst you are building up the stamina. I hope that your injury heals soon as it can be frustrating sitting on the sidelines.

Jul 19, 2018
Running at 69
by: Janet

Been doing Couch to 5K for 2 weeks, never having run before. I can't believe how much I love it.

Aug 26, 2018
New Runner aged 72 !
by: Derek

I was overweight and needed to lose 2 stone. I went on a diet and started on the C25K about 3 months ago. When I started I found it difficult to run for one minute. Last week and ran 3.2 miles in about 35 minutes. My target is 5k in under 30 mins.
Oh, I have lost the 2 stones!

Jan 06, 2019
Started running at 71
by: Carole

After being told I was pre diabetic I decided to start running with my GPs approval. After about 4 months gradually building distance I have now managed 6 miles (don't do kilometres!) Really enjoy the running, I live in the countryside so I enjoy the scenery as well. I'll never compete because I want to just experience the feeling without any pressure

Apr 14, 2019
Still running at 74
by: Wayne

I first donned running shoes at 70 years . I was always in a good physical shape after riding and walking trails. But this was a total new challenge for me !! . My first jog was a 5 min one and it took 30 mins to recover . So I decided to change strategy and adopt a sensible approach by running for 2 mins then walking 2 mins at first 2x per week .then over 2 months increased to 3x per week at run for 5 mins and walk 1 min . My fitness level then started to improve dramatically . But the whole secret to this is to listen to your body and take adequate recovery where you need ie days off when sore . Remember anyone with motivation can improve your fitness . I can now run 3 x 5km ( 3 x 3.1 miles ) per week with relative ease as well as cycling or hiking for another 2 days per week . I have now joined a weekly time trial club to increase distance and aim for a 10km run soon . I am now addicted to keeping fit and certainly am stronger and fitter than I was at 60

Dec 14, 2020
70 yr old male above ave physical condition want to run a marathon. Is that a realistic goal
by: dennis

70 yr male in good physical condition. Would like to run a Marathon. Is that a realistic goal.

Dec 16, 2020
Bravo Dennis
by: Nicole

Hi Dennis, I applaud you for wanting to run a marathon at 70 as so many older runners feel that they can't/shouldn't or just feel that they are too old. Bravo!

In my opinion it is possible for a 70 year old to run a marathon but only if they are sensible. Running a marathon at any age is very demanding on the body and it takes weeks and months of preparation if you want to avoid injury and to do your best. The older you are, the tougher on your body it can be.

If you are not used to running, even if you are fit, I would say leaping into a marathon could be too much. Consider doing shorter distances first to see how your body copes.

Things to bear in mind:

  • Get a check up with your doctor before you start training and explain your plan.

  • Take months to prepare rather than weeks.

  • Take a lot more rest and recvoery time than younger runners.

  • Consider a run/walk training program.

  • Eat and sleep well.

  • Listen to your body and remind yourself that you are not 35 years old but at the same time give yourself a huge pat on the back for the fact that you are running.

I hope that helps a bit and if you do the marathon, I would love you to come back and let us know how you got on!

Jan 14, 2021
Wonderful Inspiration
by: Avril

I quite randomly Googled a thought that I had not as yet owned...a thought of going back to running, a pastime I loved some decades ago...I am 67 years old and very fat now. I was on the verge of not giving myself permission somehow, to do this, to ultimately feel that feeling again, of a decent run under your belt...and then my search showed me this article, which is inspiring indeed, and it's following comments. I am absolutely so glad to have stumbled in here. You are certainly saying Yes to your selves, in a most positive way, and it's contagious. I think I remember quite well how to say yes to myself. Thankyou for the reminder, the lot of you. Soon I will be running somewhere beautiful , just letting those huge globs of stress fall away onto the trail behind me.

Jan 31, 2021
At 69 am I overdoing it
by: Fred

Hi, nearly 70. Have been running about 15 years. last major run was Boston 2018. Im preparing for Canberra Marathon in Australia in April 2021 and running approx 40-50klm a week. Im hoping to achieve sub 4hour .

I feel fit & strong with the occasional niggle on my knee.

Am I overdoing it at my age ?

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