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  Life   More Features  13 Jan 2017  100 years and running

100 years and running

THE ASIAN AGE. | DYUTI BASU
Published : Jan 13, 2017, 12:19 am IST
Updated : Jan 13, 2017, 2:38 am IST

Age is just a number for 103-year-old Dagadu Bhamre, who is all geared up to run in the senior citizen’s run at the Mumbai Marathon.

Dagadu Bhamre
 Dagadu Bhamre

Each morning, Dagadu Bhamre rises with the sun, drinks his customary glass of water and goes forth from his house for a 4.5 km walk to the temple in his hometown of Malegaon, Nashik. What is amazing is not the fact that he has maintained this routine for decades, but that he continues to maintain it with apparent ease at the age of 103. Not only that, but he also goes for a run twice a week, covering four to five kilometres every time. It is no wonder therefore that, when the marathon bug bit his son-in-law Subhash Wani, he enrolled his father-in-law as well as himself in the senior citizen’s run at Standard Chartered Mumbai Marathon that will take place on January 15.

“I have been following the marathon for the past couple of years. At one of them, I saw a 102-year-old man (Fauja Singh) running as a guest for the senior citizen’s run and I realised that it is something that my father-in-law could also do. So, I decided to enrol him and myself for the run,” Subhash explains, adding that he is only doing this for moral support, since Dagadu is in robust health and does not require any physical assistance.

The centenarian attributes his health to a vegetarian diet, and of course, perseverance. “I do not follow any special diet. I eat two full meals with dal, rice, chapatti, sabzi, milk and curd. Aside from that, I usually have a snack of some biscuits or fruits if I feel hungry at any other time during the day. I do not have any kind of oily or junk food, though,” says Dagadu.

Each morning, when he sets out for his walk, and especially his biweekly runs, Dagadu garners the admiration of all the passers-by. According to Subhash, “When he is out running, people stare in awe. Many come and ask him the secret to his fitness.”

Dagadu, unlike most people around him, can’t really see what is so special in his daily routine of food and exercise. According to him, anyone could maintain his level of health, with a good diet and discipline. “If the youth of today renounce harmful addictions, eat healthy, vegetarian food, exercise everyday, then they too will be in my shoes one day,” he says with confidence.

The faith that Dagadu has in himself comes from his complete self-sufficiency. Not only does he go around on his own, as he likes, he also does not have to take any prescribed medication at all. “I have no blood pressure or heart problems, no other illnesses that people of my age find themselves afflicted with, and I can go out walking or climb stairs as and when I want to with no one’s help,” he says, with an air of nonchalance. Indeed, the aspiring marathoner even takes regular trips around Malegaon and even to Ulhasnagar and Mumbai on his own.

Dagadu’s family is not in the least bit worried about his upcoming run. All 56 members from four generations call regularly and have been especially excited about the upcoming marathon. “All his grandchildren and great-grandchildren have been calling to check on how the preparation for the marathon is coming along. We are all very excited to see him running,” Subhash signs off.

Tags: marathon, dagadu bhamre, malegaon, nashik