Running at 104: Woman sets records, overcomes depression through hobby

For one resident in Riverdale, age is just a number when it comes to her hobby – running.

News 12 Staff

Sep 2, 2019, 2:23 PM

Updated 1,686 days ago

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For one resident in Riverdale, age is just a number when it comes to her hobby – running.
Ida Keeling is 104 years old and credits her longevity to running.
She says was 67 years old when she first started running as a suggestion from her daughter after her two sons were murdered.
Nearly four decades later, she is still running,
“Anytime I get to feeling real low or real bad, the first thing I go to in my thought is running. It keeps you thinking and it keeps you trying to make things even better if you can see a way,” says Keeling.

Lifting herself up from depression, Keeling wrote a book and gained a following, setting seven world records, as the first person in the 90-94, 95-99 and 100-104 age groups to run different races.

"Some waiting on line, and saying ‘My god, you're famous,’ you get to feel like one of the big celebrities, all I had to do was use my feet and pay attention to where I’m going and what I’m doing," says Keeling.

At 104 years old, Keeling says she can't run every day anymore, but instead lifts weights or rides on a stationary bike at home. However, a few times a month, she is still able to get out on a track, and she says it doesn't matter if she's in front of a cheering crowd for a world record, or by herself at the Fieldston School.

"If nobody's there and you feel nobody's showing up, I can make it on my own, I’m a toughie anyway, I can make it all on my own, I just take off and make believe I have some noise in the background,” says Keeling.


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