No stopping amazing runner preparing for hill race aged 89

Dedicated runner Dennis Adelsberg is proving age is no barrier to covering the miles.

For 82 years after he started running, he is busy training for the 50th annual Parbold hill race - an event he has been involved with since the very beginning.

Other news: Award-winning Wigan construction services company celebrates 30th birthday in style with DW Stadium eventDennis, 89, tested out the course for his friend Derek Dalton when he was starting the race in 1970.

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He took part in that first competition and has toed the line more than 20 times over the years.

Now he is looking forward to taking on the 6.75-mile course again as the race is held for the 50th time on Saturday, February 15.

There have been some alterations over the years, but he says the course is very similar to the one he first ran.

Dennis said: “I have been round half the course but at my age it’s hard to get up Parbold Hill. The worst one is the quarry hill before that. It’s very uneven stone. It’s got a lot of very hard cross country in it as well.”

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Dennis will be given the number one bib and officially start the race, before joining the runners.

Afterwards, he will hand out prizes to the winners.

He said: “I’m looking forward to trying to do it again. I will get round it one way or another, I’m that kind of person.”

Dennis is president of Skelmersdale Boundary Harriers and praised everyone involved in organising the race, which attracts 500 runners each year.

He has been running since the age of seven and has completed many races over the years including marathons, with 12 of those in London.

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He said: “I never did one for 30 years because I got terrible blisters on my feet with the old running shoes, but when the new shoes came out, I could do them.”

Some races were in aid of good causes, including doing the New York marathon to raise money for a CAT scanner at Ormskirk and District Hospital, where he spent 27 years with the league of friends.

Despite his advancing years, Dennis is still a regular runner.

He said: “I go out about three times a week and one of them is at least three miles. The Parbold hill race is nearly seven miles and if you add the hills in, it’s equal to about nine miles on the flat.”

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Dennis, who carried the Olympic torch as it toured the country in 2012, is keen to keep running.

His 98-year-old sister walks two miles every day, giving him hope he could become a centenarian.

Dennis, a great-grandfather who lives in Lathom, said: “I drink very little and I have never smoked and I think that helps. The secret is, I think, that once you retire you don’t sit on your behind, you keep doing things.”

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