Booters turn to running

From soccer to marathon running! That’s the story of a 39-year-old native of Haiti who now resides in Valley Stream, Long Island.

Reggie Hyppolite, who runs unattached, decided to enter into a Turkey Trot of 10K or 6.2 miles in Long Beach, Long Island. The course took the runners from the boardwalk in Long Beach through the city’s streets and finished near the starting line. Hyppolite competed in the event because he had some friends also running the race.

Hyppolite enjoyed the event in Long Beach and covered the course in 46:34 for 38th place in a race that attracted most of the competitors coming from Long Island.

“This is my first time doing (running in) Long Beach,” said Hyppolite. “It’s fine here in Long Beach; the weather is kind of windy. And the cross wind was a little bit challenging. But it was fun. The course was very flat.”

Hyppolite’s time of 46.34 was way off the winner’s clocking of 37:58, turned in by Matthew McGovern in a race comprising 415 finishers.

Hyppolite, who competes unattached, works out wherever and whenever he gets a chance to put in mileage and time. He would practice Valley Stream State Park, or Hendrickson Park, or even at State University of New York at Old Westbury, putting in about 35 miles weekly.

Since he was getting injured a lot, he had to get away from running, but at the same time he wanted to remain healthy.

He wants to qualify for the Boston Marathon maybe in two years. He is going to be 40 years next year. He would have to qualify in 3:10. Hyppolite doesn’t only compete in 10Ks, for he all ready ran in the New York City and Chicago marathons this past year of 2014. He ran a 3:57 in the New York City one and a 3:49 in Chicago.

He had attended his schooling – middle school and high school- in Haiti where he played right wing on the soccer team. But he had to give this sport up because he had a bad ankle. He played soccer for 18 years and even received an award for being the best player in all of Haiti, a long time ago, while in high school.

After he came to America not many people were playing soccer and therefore gave this sport up. He started running about three years ago to say in shape.

After attending high school and coming into the United States, he went on to Walsh University, a Division III college, and concentrated on academics. He then settled in Valley Stream.

When asked about his goals, Hyppolite who ran at a 7:30-mile pace in Long Beach, said that he wants to compete in the Boston Marathon.

Another competitor in the Long Beach Turkey Trot who moved up from being a sprinter was Patrick White who covered the course in 54:14 for 133rd place.

Originally from Jamaica, West Indies, White tried the long distance race, in Long Island, because he is unable to sprint any more. “I had a good race,” he said. “I run for the fun right now.”

White played soccer in Jamaica and competed against clubs and other high schools for about four to five years.

“I stopped soccer because I was getting old,” he recently said. “At the time I was 22 or 23 years of age.

Now living in Massapequa, Long Island, he recommends running to anybody.

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