Flash back in history: in 1986 Joe and Kay O’Regan finished their first marathon together hand in hand and now thirty years later, on June 6, 2016 the couple was celebrating their 57th wedding anniversary by running the Cork City Marathon again together, and again hand in hand. Just to make it even more romantic and inspiring, it is worth to mention that both of them are 80 years old. Romance never vanishes in relationship.
This couple can be and actually already is a role model of long term relationship and what is the most important – happy ones, along with healthy lifestyle. Researches believe that their secret may be hidden in holding hands. As this particular move triggers the release of oxytocin in the brain, which increases trust, compassion and generosity, meanwhile decreasing feelings of fear or anxiety. Can you imagine to run in such an age 25.5 miles? For sure the body feels some pain and tiredness, but a simple touch of your beloved person gives you a hint of support, love and takes your stress away. Kay admits that the moment of Joe grabbing her hand during the race was like a speed turner, he looked like having second wind, so both of them could run until the finish, they could sprint!
Even though they are not in the Guinness World Record they still remain the biggest inspiration for younger and older generations: it is a victory and truly amazing to be able to look at each other with such love and gentleness after thirty years together.
“In Ireland, there’s a saying: Those who pray together, stay together,” Kay says. “Well, we say: those who run together, stay together.”