Whether you are 16 years old or 40, I bet you can’t image competing in a triathlon 40 years from now. What is the cut-off age for such activity? It can’t be any older than 60 and even then you’d have to be in freakishly fantastic shape, right? For Arthur Gilbert, 60 years old feels like it was a lifetime ago. The british athlete completed his 41st triathlon in England over the weekend at the tender age of 91.
“I came last but when you’re 91 I think you’re allowed to,” Gilbert told the Daily Mirror. “I keep saying I’m going to give up soon but I always end up going back to do more. This triathlon was my third ‘last one’. I just can’t give up.”
That’s right, he said 91. Most people would feel lucky to be alive at GIlbert’s age, but he’s still finishing races. The retired helicopter engineer completed a 500-meter swim, a 20-km bike ride, and a 5-km run to complete the triathlon. His training regimen is that of a man in his mid-20s, as Gilbert said he goes to the gym three times a week, cycles 25 miles every Sunday and swims 50 laps in a pool every day. The secret? Staying happy and positive.
“The secret is staying stress-free, being happy, doing charity work and being positive,” he explained. “I don’t drink or smoke and I have regular check-ups. I also have a balanced diet with lots of fruit which helps tremendously – I love nuts and bananas.
“I must be the world’s oldest triathlete. People think I’m bonkers but they inspire me to carry on, and I inspire them to do something like this for charity.”
It may be hard to believe, but he is indeed the world’s oldest triathlete, a title he earned last year according to Burnham-On-Sea.com. Gilbert has also taken part in the ceremonies leading up to the London Olympics, as he carried the Olympic Torch through a British village last month. He may be too old to compete, but not having a 91-year-old triathlete take part in the Olympic ceremonies would just be plain senseless. Best of luck in your 42nd triathlon, Mr. Gilbert.