Healthy competition is something that encourages all participants to push themselves harder than they would have without the competition which results in more growth and boundary pushing. While there may be winners in a competition, there are no losers since everyone can still achieve their personal goals. Running is one example of healthy competition.
As the weather is getting warmer there are more running races being held. Thousands of different running events and triathlons are held world-wide. Impowerage is published near Vancouver, BC which recently held their annual Vancouver Sun Run on May 9th. The Sun Run is the largest 10 kilometre race in North America with over 50,000 runners this year and is the 2nd largest timed 10k race in the world.
I had the opportunity to run the Sun Run this year and it was inspiring to see so many people of all ages running together. There were children running with their parents, new moms and dads pushing strollers, people in wheelchairs, athletes and of course seniors.
I’m almost embarrassed to admit many of these seniors beat my time. One man, Paul Reimer, who competed in the mens 55-59 age group ran the race in only 35 minutes and 40 seconds. This amazing time earned him the 89th place overall out of the thousands who competed. The top women’s time for women over 55 was 43 minutes and 24 seconds set by Lillian Wong. This placed her in the 819th place overall and the 101st place in the women’s category. One man who competed in the men’s age group of 90-94 finished the race in 63 minutes which is a respectable time for someone of any age.
And don’t think that only these exceptional seniors can compete. Overall, there were over 4,300 people over the age of 55 who ran the Sun Run. Whether you walk or run you are still getting the benefits of exercise. With some training almost anyone can complete a race.
I talked to one woman who was participating in her 8th Sun Run. Although Jean Duncan is now in her 80’s she still races every year. She walked the 10k in just over 2 hours. This is much slower than her best time of 86 minutes in 2009 because this year she kept pace with her injured daughter. Jean’s own struggles with cancer and a broken back inspired her daughter to keep going even though she wasn’t in the best of health.
It’s a great feeling of accomplishment to finish a race. I encourage you to sign up for one. There are so many benefits of racing. It gives you a goal and motivation to exercise before hand. It helps you stay fit and most races raise money for a charitable cause as well. You can even involve your whole family like Jean does and encourage the next generation to be active.
To find local races in your area you can search online at the Running Room website or look in your local paper.
Are you signed up for any races this year?
About the Author Kelly Neufeld is the Marketing Coordinator for Impowerage as well as a regular contributor. When not reading about inspiring seniors and the latest technological advances, you’ll find her writing, tweeting and connecting with people who share the Impowerage Mission. She enjoys working out and playing with her two toddlers.