71-year-old man plans to go 26.2
Thu, 16 Feb 2012 21:55:00 GMT —
71-year-old John Hobson said the best moments of his life are the days his daughters were born, followed by the days he spends with his grandchildren and the moment that ranks third he said will happen this weekend.
During Saturday's Bi-Lo Myrtle Beach Marathon, he'll complete the 26.2 mile course like he has for the past nine years, but this time, Hobson will walk the entire race with his daughter, Susanne Navas.
"I have to say this is one of my proudest moments," said Hobson, a Myrtle Beach resident. "She's used to running ironman events so I don't know how she'll like walking."
Hobson now walks the event because he's knees don't allow him to run anymore. In his younger days, he ran the New York Marathon and the Mexico City Marathon.
"I may have to run a little bit ahead of him for a while and just stay in a yoga pose until he catches up," joked Susanne.
In last year's Myrtle Beach race, Hobson finished with a time of 6 hours 51 minutes and 35 seconds, making him the oldest man in the Myrtle Beach area to complete the race and his time placed him second in his age division.
"I tell people that all the time. Then I have to tell them only two people were in my age group."
Though many in Hobson's shoes would display their marathon achievements on mantles and plagues inside their homes, Hobson keeps all his momentoes tucked away in the back of his closet. "I don't like to brag about it. I just do it to stay active," said Hobson.
He walks year round, but trains heavily for three to four months before the event.
"I've lost ten pounds since I started training hard," said Hobson. He estimates he'll lose an addition four pounds on race day.
"Every year around mile 19, I tell myself I will never ever do this again. I take off my shoes when I'm done. I have blisters everywhere. I look at my feet and tell myself again, I'll never ever do this again."
He said he will keep competing in marathons for as long as he can, and when he can't anymore, he'll do something else but not stop walking.
"I'll probably just start doing the half-marathon instead of the full."