Wow, what a difference a week makes. One week ago, I was actually planning on participating in the Running of The Green to kick off the RROY series. Today that race was shut down as are all public schools, colleges, restaurants, bars, theaters and all gathering areas. Per NY state and CDC guidelines we are asked to stay home and maintain social distancing. Let’s not even mention jobs and the economy. GRTC is not immune of course and I wanted to review the effects we are aware of.

  1. The Amy’s Run: An Amigas 6 Hour Ultra race in Durand Eastman Park on 4/19 has been canceled. Stay tuned for possible rescheduling later in the year.
  2. RROY series: Having lost our first RROY race it is possible more this spring will also be gone. If so, we hope to be able to pick up the program later in year with modifications in scoring and requirements. Stay tuned.
  3. Mind the Ducks 12 Hour Ultra 5/9/20 is in question may need to be cancelled or postponed. One option being entertained is allowing people to defer that registration to next year or apply it to this year’s Candle light 12 on 7/18/20 or CanLake50 race on 10/10/20. We should have more clarity by early April.
  4. The GRTC Spring Track Clinic starting 4/29 at East Rochester HS is also in question. It is possible this will be delayed to later in summer with same format (except for loss of the McMullan Mile as the “final exam”). We will have more data by early April. We would ask people not to ask for refunds yet until we sort out where things are going. Anyone who wants to be reimbursed down the line will have that option.

Most importantly, we want people to stay healthy. We are dealing today with a new and serious epidemic. COVID19 presents major health risks in the absence of specific treatments or vaccines. Social distancing is the watchword and this is clearly, scientifically and medically the way (perhaps the ONLY way) to keep this disease from spreading. Staying home and away from others, washing your hands well and keeping surfaces clean and disinfected is really important. If social distancing can help YOU avoid the disease, you will help OTHERS avoid it as well.

So, does all this mean no running? NO. We DON’T want people to lose their hard-won training and the enjoyment of our sport. Social distancing doesn’t preclude running, just the group running that so many of us enjoy. You can certainly and perfectly safely run alone outside on a sunny spring day with no worries. Running outside can be done, by CDC and running authority guidelines, as long as you stay STRICTLY 6 feet apart (about 2 lanes on the track) from others. Keeping up with your friends by virtual running, social media, text, email and facetime may for now have to do, but help everyone in the long run. We are TRULY in this together and compulsively following these guidelines protects your friends, family and fellow runners.

COVID19 will be the new normal for at least several months. How long this does last is unsure but “it will be what it will be.” Social distancing should help it to be over sooner. For your own heath, staying fit also does make a difference. So, don’t hide from running but do it safely with appropriate social distance. We WILL get back to normal when this is over and we can THEN get to running with others in person. In the meantime, stay healthy.

See your out on the road (6 feet away)!

Doug Jones
President GRTC