Locals David Surratt and Diane Kramer said they look forward to more competition and camaraderie in the future with other senior athletes after competing in their first National Senior Games 5K run in July.
White Plains resident Surratt finished in the top 10 runners of the race held in Cleveland, Ohio.
Surratt is the twice defending champion of the North Carolina State Senior Games in the 5K run. He competed in the age 70+ bracket in his first national experience.
“I ran a good race. I had a fantastic time and met some great people,” said Surratt.
Since he began running in his 40s, it has grown into a passion, he said.
The health benefits of running inspires him, and the competition that comes with it, he said.
“I feel as good as I did when I was 30 or 35 years old.”
In addition, Surratt said he includes weight training and bike riding in his workouts.
Next on the agenda for Surratt will be to run a half marathon in November. He said he looks forward to running with “world class runners” in Tampa, Fla.
Mount Airy resident Kramer said she ran in the National Senior Games 5K race after qualifying earlier in the State Senior Games held in Raleigh.
Kramer qualified for three national events in the state games including the 5K run, golf and bowling. Kramer placed fourth in the state in golf.She said she is set to compete in national competition this October. She may compete in bowling, but was undecided if she would pursue the competition at the national level.
Kramer ran the national 5K race in the age category of 60+. Though she did not finish in the top 10, she said it was a lot of fun to be around the people and a good experience.
Personally, Kramer said running the race is more than about being fast. “It is about staying in shape,” she said.
Bradley Key at Reeves Community Center encouraged her to get signed up after she enrolled in the “biggest loser program,” said Kramer.
She has remained inspired since then and kept on going.
“I think it is wonderful, it gives seniors something to look forward to,” said Kramer.
Husband Paul Kramer attended the nationals in support of her and is also an avid golfer.
Kramer said after she took up the challenge to compete in the Senior Games, her kids jumped on board.
Both daughters also run and Kramers’ sister, a long-time running enthusiast, has encouraged her through it all, she said.
More information on participation in the sporting events may be found at www.seniorgames.org.