PINE BROOK, N.J.For his 72nd birthday, Alan Greenwald, president of Pine Brook-based Pine Brook Tire decided to do something challenging: participate in the Aquaphor New York City Triathlon, which took place on July 14.
Unfortunately, fate had other ideas.
I'm sort of (into) physical fitnessI mean, I'm not a nut, but I work out and like to take care of myself, he recently told Tire Business. And I just had the feeling that I wanted to do it, the event.
He said he likes to do long distance events but that marathons are getting too challenging at this stage in the game.
Mr. Greenwald said that since he was going to take on this feat, he might as well do some good for someone else, so he joined the Athletes to End Alzheimer's team.
He said his mother is struggling with dementia and is in a nursing homeand many others also suffer from the illness.
It not only is a debilitating disease for the people, but I think it's debilitating for the relatives, Mr. Greenwald said.
Not to take away from the bad stuff that's out there, the cancers and the stuff, but this stuff is so ongoing.
He also has watched the destruction early-onset Alzheimer's can have on people, such as the family members of his partner, Rhonda.
It's like a living death for a 50- to 60-year-old person. It's horrible, Mr. Greenwald said.
Looking back on the preparations he undertook, his training schedule was challenging, to say the least, for someone 72or perhaps any age, for that matter.
He started on Mondays, when he took a group swim class. Tuesdays were interval running workouts. On Wednesdays he had a bike workout for about 12 miles and then a three- or four-mile run. Fridays were a day off or a light workout. Saturdays consisted of three 45-minute spin workouts. And on Sundays there were one-hour swims followed by a three- or four-mile bike ride.
Mr. Greenwald said he was really hitting his stride in training until one day during a bike ride, as he rode across the George Washington Bridgewhich spans the Hudson River, connecting the borough of Manhattan in New York City to Fort Lee, N.J. he hurt his thumb on a guardrail.
After speaking with a few doctors, he learned that he would need surgery on his hand.
Thus ended his quest to complete the triathlon. Later, as he looked at the cast on his hand and hoped everything would heal properly, he vowed to try again to tackle the race next year.
Although he was unable to compete, Mr. Greenwald still raised nearly $12,000 for his team. He said that there were 3,500 people who participated in the event comprising a one-mile swim, 26-mile bike ride and 6.3-mile runbut only six were over the age of 70.
His goal for next year? Finish in the top three, he said confidently.
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