'Stay healthy and keep running' is advice that every one of us can live by. But when this advice is imparted by a 105-year-old runner straight after she’s just set a new world record for sprinting 100m, we should all sit up and pay attention.
Julia Hawkins ran her world record time of 1:02:95 in the 105+ age category in the 2021 Louisiana Senior Games, but despite setting a new benchmark, she was not entirely happy with her performance. Like most runners, she thought she had a little more in the tank. 'I wanted to do it in less than a minute,' she told reporters after the race. Despite someone pointing out that she ran the race in a time less than her age, when asked if that made her feel better Hawkins simply replied, 'No.'
Hawkins only took up running when she turned 100 because she says she ran out of people to compete against in cycling when she hit her late 90s. She was the former holder of the 100m world record after recording a time of 39:62 in 2017. However, that record was broken in August this year by 100-year-old Diane Friedman, who clocked 36.71.
Hawkins’ training largely revolves around gardening – she loves nothing more than spending her days tending to her flowers, hence her other nickname ‘The Flower Lady’. She aims to walk or jog around a mile a day, adding in the occasional 50m sprint. Although, as she told USA Today, 'When you’re 105, you don’t have too many 100m dashes left in you, so you save them for when you need them.'
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