With a passport reading 53 years, Haile Satayin will be the oldest runner at the start of Beijing Olympic Marathon this August.
I got his story from listening to Satayin audio interview on NPR. The Israel runner will be one of the oldest runners at this years Beijing Olympics. If you think Haile Satayin is too old to run at this level, keep in mind that 4 years ago at Athens Olympics marathon the man was finisher No. 20. His personal best time for a marathon is 2 hours, 14 minutes, and 21 seconds at a competition in Venice in 2003.
Does the name Haile sound familiar? Satayin emigrated to Israel from Ethiopia in 1991. Moving from the famine of Ethiopia to fast food lifestyle of Israel can have a dramatic effect to a man’s weight. He says that living in Israel made him gain weight, and he needed a way to slim down. He soon started running competitively.
Haile Satayin Training Programme
Most days, Satayin gets up around 4:30 a.m. and runs at least a half-marathon before it gets too hot. Am only 27 and I can only manage a half-marathon once a week, I NEED TO PULL UP MY SOCKS.
Satayin is currently training in the hills of his native Ethiopia, where it’s cooler. Just like other Olympic hopefuls, he is dreaming big.
“It would be great to win a medal, but in any case I’ll compete and do my best. I’m the oldest runner there, and I thank God that he’s given me strength to run. As long as I can, I’ll keep running,” he says.
Although I will be rooting for Kenyan runners at Olympics, I will be happy if Haile Satayin wins at least a bronze medal. I wish him best of Luck.