Dr. Dick Rosen, state record-holder: 'I feel fortunate to have lived to the point where I'm in this age group'

The veteran Greensboro runner will return to the Downtown Greenway Run & Block Party on Saturday.

Dr. Dick Rosen, state record-holder: 'I feel fortunate to have lived to the point where I'm in this age group'
Dr. Dick Rosen completing the Downtown Greenway Run in October 2021.
Click on the video above to see Dr. Dick Rosen at the 2021 Run 4 the Greenway.

The final runner at the Downtown Greenway Run & Block Party's 4-mile race in October 2021 thrilled the crowd awaiting him at the finish line.

Dr. Dick Rosen is back!

He's coming off COVID, but Rosen, 92, is entered in this event Saturday as a newly minted state record-holder.

The retired internist recently gained the distinction in  the men's 90-94 age division from USA Track & Field North Carolina for the 5K distance for his performance at Fleet Feet Sports' The Big Run in June.

Click on the video above to see Dr. Dick Rosen finishing Fleet Feet Sports' The Big Run in June.

Rosen completed that 3.1-mile race, timed by Trivium Racing, in 57 minutes and 56 seconds. And John Dewey, the Fleet Feet Sports owner, steered the process on getting Rosen's time entered in the record book.

"I feel fortunate to have lived to the point where I'm in this age group," Rosen says.

Rosen recently fielded a few questions about his state record and his recovery, and he touched on his tennis game and offered his best running advice, too.

What the record means

"There was a 5K record that I broke by three minutes (when he turned 80), but there was nothing at a greater distance than that. I set records for the 10K, 10 mile and half marathon. Since then, some much faster runners have broken them all. The guy who compiles the records, Neville Wood, is seven years younger than I am, and his half marathon broke mine by half an hour.

"I felt fortunate that John Dewey was willing to submit the paperwork, which can be arduous and was time-consuming, so that it is listed, and that was very nice of him."

On running after COVID

"What I call running doesn't involve having both feet up in the air at the same time. But I've been out for an hour, an hour and 20 minutes. That's long enough to surely cover the 4-mile course."


4-8 p.m. Saturday
LoFi Park, 500 N. Eugene St., Greensboro
About the race
The 13th annual event, formerly directed by Action Greensboro in support of the Downtown Greenway, is now operated by the City of Greensboro. All proceeds will benefit the Downtown Greenway and Greensboro Parks and Recreation, in support of programming, educational workshops, operations, and community engagement.
About the course
The Downtown Greenway, totaling just more than 4 miles, is mostly complete. Runners and walkers will use streets along the unfinished western side in the event's first mile. Click here to see the course.
Learn more and sign up
Downtown Greenway Run & Block Party on RunSignup.com

How he’s faring in his other sport

"I'm playing tennis a couple of times a week. I am more vulnerable on a tennis court because my balance isn't quite what it once was. And I have to be careful and have to decide when to stop that. Hopefully I'll be able to continue that for a little while, anyway.”

Why he’s a grateful runner

"When I enter a race, I realize I'm going to be last and it's going to be a difficult time for traffic control to stay out there, as long it takes for me to finish. I was in the North Carolina Senior Games (Sept. 22). I was in the 10K; I was the only entry in my age group. The husband of the lady that was the administrator for the race rode alongside me on a bike, and he was able to decommission each of the volunteers when I would get up to the turns. He could send them home.

"It was a course that was twice the 5K cost by running it a second time. And about half a mile each time was on trails with rocks and roots and unsure footing. I was glad that they let me in that race, and I thanked them for staying out there that long.

"I said the one thing they probably didn't want to hear: 'If I can help it, I want to be back again next year.'"

His message to younger runners (in other words, "us")

"Hang in there. You never know when it's going to end. On the other hand, if it doesn't end, it's a nice thing to be able to get outside and do as much as you can."

Runners celebrate Downtown Greenway and Dr. Dick Rosen
The Run 4 the Greenway is a fundraiser for Action Greensboro’s Downtown Greenway in Greensboro.
Dick Rosen, Greensboro’s running nonagenarian, lacing up for Run 4 the Greenway
Running is only one part of an active regimen for the retired internist.

Running Shorts Resources

Click on the links below to learn more about running in the Triad:

Race Days: Road and trail races in the Triad
A listing of road and trail races, plus a few triathlons, across the Triad.
Running groups in the Triad: Greensboro, Winston-Salem, High Point and more
A directory of running groups across the Triad that are free to join and would welcome you.
Tracks in the Triad: Here’s where you can run and walk
A guide to tracks in Guilford and Forsyth counties that are considered open for runners and walkers.