Over 50s prepare to run in the Sunshine Coast Marathon
HALCYON over 50s communities will once again have a major presence at this year's Sunshine Coast Marathon, as retirees prove that age really is just a number.
Lawrie Little, 66, lives at Halcyon Parks in Caloundra and plans to compete in the half marathon event after running 5.7km at the recent Gold Coast Airport Marathon.
Mr Little recorded a time just under half an hour in the 5.7km event, placing first in the 65-69 age group, and plans to raise the bar for his next challenge.
Having had some time off following quadruple heart bypass surgery in the late 90s, Lawrie was determined to regain his fitness.
He began training four years ago, taking advantage of free running events and fitness challenges.
"I do Park Run which is an event held in 171 parks around Australia where our runs are timed and each session we try to better ourselves," he said.
"I also run four or five times a week between six to eight kilometres.
"I do it on my own because my friends think they're too old; they all think I'm mad."
Mr Little began running with friends decades ago when he was a referee for his local rugby club.
"It was something that I thought would be good to do with friends as a way to stay fit and healthy," He said.
"The passion has stayed with me ever since."
Fellow home owners at Halcyon Parks have also encouraged Lawrie to maintain an active lifestyle, offering encouragement and support during the nine years that he and his wife have lived there.
Halcyon Parks community manager Kate Clark, who also proudly runs on the Halcyon team, said there was a sense of camaraderie in the lead up and during the marathon events.
"Home owners band together and having the support of so many people really gives them all a boost," she said.
"That's why, years down the track, we're still entering big groups in these marathon events, their passion and enthusiasm builds year after year."
Mr Little said he was looking forward to the challenge of the half marathon.
"My wife will be there supporting me but there are another 80 Halcyon home owners competing in the five and 10 kilometre events, so I'm sure they'll be cheering me on," he said.
"I'm not running for time, I'm running to finish and as a personal challenge."
Halcyon is a long-time entrant in the Sunshine Coast and Gold Coast marathons, where it is frequently among the largest corporate entrants.