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Fitger's 5K Kicks Off Race Season

Updated: 04/18/2014 6:24 PM
Created: 04/18/2014 5:52 PM WDIO.com
By: Maarja Anderson

Runners ready for the first spring race of the year will come out in record numbers for this year's Fitger's 5K.

"It's my first 5K ever. It's my grandma's birthday tomorrow so I'm running it in memory of her," said first-time racer, Emily Rice.

Bob Gustafson with Grandma's Marathon said more than 2,000 runners will race down Superior Street this Saturday.

This year's 5K is also special for another reason. They are celebrating their 25th anniversary. 

Tami Tanski Sherman with Fitger's has been at every single race. She said each year they run into the same problem.

"The weather! The weather is always a challenge. Either we have rain or we have snow or we have rain and snow," she explained.

Gustafson said the 5K is the just the beginning of many races coming up this spring and summer.

"It's exciting for us to sort of kick off the spring racing season and know it's just a couple of short months away from Grandma's Marathon," he said.

But this winter has made training pretty tough for many runners.

"Training has been hard and difficult, with the cold and everything," said Floyd Zylka, who has ran several Fitger's 5K races and Garry Bjorklund Half Marathons. "I tried to train inside, I'm not much on a treadmill, so I'd rather just run outside."

Despite the terrible training weather, Gustafson said entries for the full marathon are up 10 percent from this time last year. He expects the Garry Bjorklund Half will also break entry records.

The Fitger's 5K raises money for the Young Athletes Foundation.

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