Still going at a safe distance

Keep your distance; stay at least 6 feet apart.

The coronavirus pandemic has changed the way people approach everyday life.

Former Maplewood High School runner and distance coach Ted Rupe said life as we once knew it has been altered.

“It’s going to affect us significantly for sure. If it’s what we’ve got to do, we’ve got to do it,” he said.

Rupe, who with his wife Michelle, owns Gopher Running, runs many local road races around northeast Ohio. He loves promoting the sport, seeing adults gather together.

The distancing between people and not having groups of more than 10 gather at one place, is done to help limit the spread of the virus.

Friday’s temperature reached 70 degrees, feeling more like a spring day, even if it was only for a couple of hours.

Rupe said he’s on social media and there are people asking others to run with them. He’s worried how people’s health will be affected after being told to stay indoors to stop the spread of COVID-19.

“It’s going to be interesting how this shakes out,” Rupe said. “I hope it doesn’t end up hurting our health in ways we can’t anticipate. There are going to be people that don’t get out and do things that they normally would, go to the gym and do other things outside.”

Groups like the Youngstown Road Runners Club (ytownrunners.org) are still meeting for a Sunday-morning run, but in groups of 10 or fewer and staying 6 feet apart.

They are not meeting at an indoor facility inside Mill Creek Park as they are closed, instead they meet in an outdoor pavilion.

“We’re all loud. We can talk from that far apart,” the website said. “If you have a cough or shortness of breath, fever, or are generally feeling unwell, please be considerate of your fellow runners and stay home and get well.”

Cortland’s Shelley Engleman, whose children (Phil and Erin Pavick) ran at Maplewood, said she still runs in small groups or by herself to keep herself active.

“You can go out and pretty much run on your own,” she said. “We do have small groups that I’ve been very fortunate to be able to train with. Most of the time it’s just two or three of us together. We’ve been able to maintain that with everything else that is going on.”