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Capital Region seniors chase goal as part of area running challenge

Benita Zahn
Created: July 01, 2020 06:02 PM

During the pandemic, there's lots of advice on how to stay well. Along with social distancing, hand washing, and masks is exercise. It's believed that regular, consistent exercise can help boost the health of your immune system. A particular group of local runners is proving that point.

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There may be snow on the mountaintop, as in white hair, but the fire in the bellies runs red hot.

Meet Team HR 7260 - a reference to the federal act that created Social Security.

The team is comprised of 17 runners all aged 62 to 71. Together, they're chasing a goal to run the most miles run in the Capital District

Challenge sponsored by The Albany Running Exchange.

Greg Rickes, 70, is team captain. He routinely logs 20 miles a week and frequently races. However, the pandemic postponed or cancelled his race schedule.

When this distance challenge was announced, it seemed like the answer. Not only would he have a goal, but it was the panacea to the social isolation he was feeling since the start of the pandemic.

His idea for a senior only group stemmed from another race a decade ago called “No Kids Allowed.”
Emails went out, challenge accepted, masks on for when they meet up, and they started racking up the miles.

In 4 ½ weeks, they've collectively logged over 2,000 miles landing them pretty consistently in 5th place overall out of 57 teams.
Since speed isn't a factor in this challenge, walkers are welcome.

As Rickes points out, it's a way to show the younger competitors that you've got to keep moving.

The Albany Running Exchange Director says the challenge should eclipse 50,000 miles.

Learn more about how Rickes got others to join the challenge, and one woman's story on how running has been a life changer, by watching the video of Benita Zahn's story.

MORE INFORMATION: The Albany Running Exchange


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