100-Year-Old Marathoner Shouldn't Care He Was Denied World Record

fauja singhI would consider myself a runner, but I have yet to complete a full marathon. Which is why I'm beyond jealous of Fauja Singh, who at 100 years old completed the Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon earlier this month. Amazing, right?! At that age, Singh is technically the oldest marathoner in the world. But not if the people at The Guinness Book of World Records have anything to say about it. 

Guinness told BBC that they won't be able to recognize Singh as the oldest marathoner because he can't produce his actual birth certificate from 1911. To that notion -- I say give the man a break! Just look at him! He's old. He's tired. Hell, I'd give him a spot in the record books because it's beyond apparent that the man's got some serious heart.

I digress. Singh shouldn't care whether or not he's Guinness official. This accomplishment is much, much bigger than that.


Becoming a marathoner is a huge milestone at any age. The thought of being able to finish such an astounding task at his age is a huge testament to his overall bill of health. I shudder thinking of the toll that running 26.2 miles right now would take on my body as a woman in my mid-20s. I can only imagine the thoughts going through his head when he set out on his run on October 16.

Like other great health achievements, whether it be losing a few pounds or lowering your cholesterol, a run like Singh's should be something you do for yourself. For the 100-year-old man, just being able to say that he completed the race (even though he finished in last place) is outstanding.

Yes, it would it be cool for Guinness to recognize him. But if they won't, the record books still can't take away the fact that he did indeed finish the race -- or his pride. Now, people everywhere know of the name Fauja Singh. Across the world, we've seen the pictures of his black running suit and bright yellow turban. With his great heart and strong body, I have a feeling he may one day make it into the books, but for the title "World's Oldest Man" instead.

Do you think Guinness should honor Singh without a birth certificate to prove his age?


Image via Jeff J. Mitchell/Getty Images

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