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'Age is just a number' – meet the 70-year-old set to run the London marathon

PUBLISHED: 08:19 16 January 2019 | UPDATED: 09:09 16 January 2019

Jenny Rowley, with her daughter Beckie, who together are training to run the London Marathon. Picture: Beckie Clarke

Jenny Rowley, with her daughter Beckie, who together are training to run the London Marathon. Picture: Beckie Clarke

Archant

Many people look forward to their retirement as an opportunity to slow down and take it easy – but for one woman retirement has been a chance to take up running and prove that age is nothing more than a number.

Jenny Rowley from Taverham will be 70 when she embarks on her first London Marathon later this year.

The former hairdresser first took up running when she retired at 62 and has not looked back since.

Now, along with her daughter Beckie Clarke, 44, she will tackle the 26-mile run and is hoping to raise £2,000 for charity in the process.

Mrs Rowley said running a marathon had been on her bucket list for a while.

She said: “It’s always been a bit of a joke that I would run a marathon when I was 70, but when I entered the ballot I didn’t expect to get in. It’s a bit of a shock really.”

Three weeks into a 17-week training programme, Mrs Rowley said she did not see her age as a barrier to doing anything, let alone taking on a marathon.

She said: “I’m of the opinion that if you want to survive you’ve got to keep going. I’m active all the time, I have maybe one rest day a week.

“If you think you’re going to get old you will and I think you’ve got to keep a positive attitude, age is just a number, sometimes I think that I’m 30.

“I think I’m just living everyday for what it is and doing 
something different keeps you young.”

Mrs Clarke, a personal trainer, said her mum has gained the nickname Supernan because of her active lifestyle.

She said: “She is just a shining example of living life to the full, I hope when I get to her age I’m as fit and healthy as she is.”

Hoping to raise £2,000 for the children’s charity Make-A-Wish, Mrs Clarke said she chose the organisation because of its work.

She said: “I’m really grateful to have two really fit and healthy children but what [Make-A-Wish] do to support families with 
unwell children makes me feel quite emotional.

“The pain of running 26-miles is nothing compared to the pain those families go though, it’s about giving something back.”

To donate to the pair’s 
fundraising page visit uk.virginmoneygiving.com/Team/Runsinthefamily262

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