Some 414,168 people took to the streets this year for the London Marathon. My husband included, who has in the last five years has become something of a Mamil: that's a middle aged man in lycra.

Along with most of the other dads in our Surrey village, he spends several hours each week running and cycling his way to midlife fitness; partly because he enjoys it, but partly to ward off the dreaded middle-age spread that was once an accepted part of entering your 40s.

"In the last few years I've noticed a real shift in attitudes towards ageing and

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