At 64, Bob Rummel just keeps on running

At 64, Bob Rummel just keeps on running

By Mike Hricik for the Latrobe Bulletin

For Bob Rummel, getting older doesn’t mean slowing down.

A typical week for the 64-year-old retiree consists of pedaling 150 miles a week in spinning classes, bending backwards on a yoga mat and doing crunches to prepare for marathons and grueling ultra-marathons.

For Rummel, who lives in Latrobe with his wife Gloria, the physical and mental challenges of marathon running inspire his passion most.

“It’s the ultimate test,” he said.

In May, Rummel places 442th our of 5,040 in the Dick’s Sporting Goods Pittsburgh Marathon after running 26.2 miles in three hours and 33 minutes. He places second in his age division and will run in the Boston Marathon next April, beating the qualifying time by 20 minutes.

The marathon man will trot all day in September for the third time as part of the annual NorthCoast 24-Hour Endurance Run in Cleveland.

But, despire his speed and endurance, Rummel began running late in life.

He joined his oldest son, Robert, in an Atlanta, Ga. half marathon in 1998.

What started as a family bonding activity became something more as Rummel got hooked, participating in his first marathon a year later.

Son and running partner Robert of Westlake, Ohio, said he has sometimes struggled to keep up with the leder Rummel’s pace on the marathon circuit.

“He’s more fit at age 64 than he was at age 35 and more in shape even than 21-year-olds,” Robert said.

Rummel counts crossing the Atlanta Marathon’s finish line on Thanksgiving Day 2002 with both his sons, Robert and Michael, as one of his proudest moments.

He hopes to do the same with his grandchildren one day who, for now, are running in turkey trots.

Rummel credits Wesmoreland Athletic Club master personal trainer Lou Rocco with his recent success in East Coast marathons.

Rocco said his trainee’s dedication sets him apart from others.

“He’s in the gym working all the time and is a dream to train because of his motivation,” Rocco said.

Rummel just may be one ot the men to beat heading into his Boson Marathon debut.

Two weeks after his Pittsburgh Marathon finish, Rummel also clinched second place in his division at the Rite Aid Cleveland Marathon with a time of three hours and 43 minutes. He places 420th our of 14,664 other participants.

Rummel also remains an active member of te marathon runners community as a part of both the Steel City Road Runners Club and Road Runners Club of America.

There’s one thing, Robert Rummel said, that his father put first over physical fitness.

“He’s a family man number one,” he said. “He has the same passion for running as he does for his family and friends.”