By Erin Hassanzadeh

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Tens of thousands of runners from across the world are competing in the Twin Cities Marathon races this weekend. Unfortunately, Saturday’s 10K, 5K and other events were cancelled because of potential thunderstorms.

It’s the first time in 38 years that officials have had to cancel a Twin Cities Marathon race. Six thousand runners were supposed to participate Saturday.

But there are more than 20,000 people racing in Sunday’s 10 mile and full marathon, including a man known as “Fast Eddy” who has been a staple at the race since it began.

“I got a nickname called ‘Fast Eddy’ and that is not the name that really should go with me anymore. It’s gone to ‘Slow Eddy,’” said Eddy Rousseau.

Rousseau didn’t start running until he was in his 40s.

“It’s been going downhill ever since,” he said.

On Sunday, Rousseau, who recently turned 80, will run his 110th marathon.

“I know that I’m never going to get faster,” he said. “I’m just trying to not get slower — faster.”

It will be his 38th Twin Cities Marathon. He runs it every year.

“My first one was at age 43. Last year at age 79, I barely made the six-hour cut by four minutes,” Rousseau said.

His feats are endless. But Rousseau’s favorite medal isn’t on this wall — it’s his AA coin.

“This is the most important. It’s most important because I know I wouldn’t be alive today had I kept drinking like I did, and that’s 36 years ago since I had my last drink,” he said.

Running isn’t just a sport to Rousseau — it’s a lifeline.

“I had to do something after work rather than drinking,” he said. “So I started working at it, inch by inch, foot by foot, day by day.”

“Running is a joy,” he said. “[The] running community is a joy — every mile is a joy, because I don’t know when the next one will be the last one.”

A nine year old will be running in tomorrow’s race.

Eddie says there are about 20 other runners like him who have raced in the marathon every year since the beginning of the race itself.

Erin Hassanzadeh

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