Woman runs for MS

Rachel Aldrich

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An Ohio woman is part of a group that’s running from Los Angeles to New York for a reason that’s close to her heart: multiple sclerosis.

Rachel Aldrich, 22, said she just wrapped up a 247-mile run from Ft. Wayne, Ind. to Youngstown. To lend perspective to the distance, the run would be like running 79 5K races and over 26 marathons, all in just ten days.

Aldrich, who lives in the Cleveland area, is a member of Tag Team Relay which has other runners picking up where the previous member stops. Aldrich ran 24 miles per day for eight days, then 28 miles on Aug. 9 and 13 miles the next day. She said the key to the distance running is breaking up the miles.

“You run a lot, you know the training was just a lot of time on my feet, and I did not worry too much about how fast I was going, just getting out there in the heat,” said Aldrich. “Early in the morning and late at night and just running, even when I did not want to.”

While the trek has been tiring, Aldrich has gotten inspiration along the way from the people she meets. Everyone is encouraging and ready to tell their stories of how MS has affected their lives.

“We were in an RV park in Van Buren and people kept coming up to us and asking us questions and told us their stories with MS and just to know that we were making a difference and touching people’s lives was really cool,” said Aldrich. “I would love to do it again. This was just the best experience.”

The team’s goal is to raise $500,000. They’ve raised about $100,000 so far, Aldrich said.

Aldirch’s mother has multiple sclerosis. The run is for the non-profit group M.S. Run the U.S.

There are three more runners left in the journey to New York. The relay is expected to end on Sept. 6 in New York City.

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