Florida

At 72, This Ultra-Marathoner Continues to Break Records

At 72-years-old, Bob Becker estimates he's run about 20,000 miles in his lifetime. 

He's conquered the Boston Marathon and several ultra-marathons. An ultra-marathon is any race that is longer than a standard, 26.2-mile marathon.

In 2015, he spent his 70th birthday running the prestigious Badwater Double, a 292-mile run through Death Valley. Before Becker, the oldest person to complete the Badwater Double was 57 years old.

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"I'm a little bit unusual at my age, doing these things," he said. "I’m told frequently that I inspire a lot of people to get off the sofa and get out there and exercise. And that's a big deal to me."

From Morocco to China, his running has brought him to different corners of the world.

Becker is also the founder of the Keys100, the biggest ultra-marathon in Florida. Keys100 will hold its 10th annual race later this month. 

"[I’m] very proud of the race," he said. "Not only has it been wonderful to see the sport grow, but we raise a lot of money for the Cancer Foundation of the Florida Keys, which is our charity of choice."

The Cancer Foundation of the Florida Keys has personal symbolism to Becker, who conquered prostate cancer over a decade ago. His experience with cancer, he said, gave him a "new appreciation for life."

Becker said he's slowing down, only doing three or four races a year, but he plans to keep running for "the foreseeable future."

This year's Keys100 ultra-marathon will take place May 20 and May 21. To register for the ultra-marathon, go to Keys100.com.

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