She’s done marathons in London, New York and Auckland, now Jenny Cunningham is adding Dubbo to the list.
Ms Cunningham is from Hamilton, New Zealand. At the end of the month she’s going to compete in the 21 kilometre Zebra Zoom at the Dubbo Stampede.
“When I heard it was at the zoo I thought ‘well this is cool’. You get to go through the zoo? How cool is that?” Ms Cunningham said.
Taronga Western Plains Zoo isn’t the only reason Ms Cunningham will be visiting Dubbo. It’s also home to her husband’s brother and sister-in-law who will be cheering on the 60-year-old as she crosses the finish line.
“There’s such a feeling of satisfaction when you finish. And it doesn’t matter if you come first third or last, you can tick it off and say ‘I’ve done that’. That’s the coolest part of it,” Ms Cunningham said.
“It doesn’t matter how fit you are, it doesn’t matter how old you are, you’ve just got to get out there and do it.”
Because she does half marathons so frequently – she did one at the weekend and will do another the week before the Stampede – Ms Cunningham said it would only take her about six weeks to train.
“It keeps me on the move. My mum, who is in a rest home, says ‘why do you keep doing that? It’s so hard on you’, but I don’t want to end up in a rest home before I have to,” she said.
“When you’re not feeling well and you go for a walk, you come back and you feel heaps better for it. It’s good for your body and your soul.”
Entering races around the world is something the New Zealander said she had been doing for “quite a few years”.
“Years and years ago a friend found a bike that was abandoned. She got new tyres on it, bought it around and said ‘now we’re going to do a triathlon’. I thought ‘are you crazy?’ but we started training and it was actually a lot of fun,” Ms Cunningham said.
Her journey into marathons grew from there.