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Friday 13 December 2019

No finish line in sight for gran Collette after her 700th marathon

Collette O'Hagan
Collette O'Hagan

A grandmother who has run her 700th marathon says she has no intention of stopping any time soon.

Collette O'Hagan (70), from Dundalk, has clocked up just under 30,000km so far.

Collette, who has run marathons all over the world, said she was "totally overwhelmed with all the lovely comments from so many on my 700th marathon".

She added: "While I don't want this to sound like an Oscar speech, I really want to thank each and every one of you from the bottom of my heart."

Strive

Collette completed her 700th marathon, the East Antrim Series, last Thursday, and said that when she read the comments and messages "I wondered if it was really me they were talking about.

Asked why she had run so many marathons, she said: "I thoroughly enjoy doing them.

"I like challenges and feel we should all strive to achieve goals in our lives.

"Sometimes these goals go beyond my limitations, but there's no harm in pushing the barriers every so often as long as you're not constantly doing so.

"To do this you need a few ingredients, like motivation, determination, focus, tenacity and both mental and physical fitness.

"Mix all these together and you have the basis for life's challenges and long-distance running."

Collette said the Dublin marathon has always been special for her.

She added that none of her achievements would have been possible without "the all- important support and encouragement of family and friends, both running or non running".

Footprints

"If I leave my footprints on this earth, I want them to be not just carbon but embedded in a trail of total respect and affinity towards my fellow human beings, regardless of their colour, race or creed," she said.

"As my journey moves onwards from my 700th marathon, it's not just a journey of human endurance but life's journey also.

"They say 'there's a story in everyone'. May I meet many more of all you lovely people as I continue on my journey."

As for her plans for the fut-ure, she said: "No stopping, no finish line, just keep on running."

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