BOSTON (CBS) — Since retiring from football, former Patriots linebacker and three-time Super Bowl champ Tedy Bruschi has found a new passion in running. He’s completed three Boston Marathons, so you know Bruschi wasn’t going to sit out Global Running Day on Wednesday.
Bruschi took part in the NYRR’s Virtual Global Running Day 1M, completing a virtual race with former New York Giants running back Tiki Barber. Unfortunately for Bruschi, there was no way to virtually tackle Barber.
“That would be a great development if I could tackle Tiki, because his time will probably be faster than mine,” Bruschi told WBZ-TV’s Dan Roche ahead of the race.
Bruschi didn’t intend on beating Barber’s time — though he boasts that he can run a mile in the high sevens or low eights — but the former football foes turned runners both did their mile sprint for a great cause. Bruschi ran on behalf of his foundation, Tedy’s Team, while Barber ran for Team for Kids.
“It’s a movement to go out and do something globally, all around the country,” Bruschi said of the Run 1 Tag 1 Challenge. “You can go out and get some exercise, and do it together with a lot of people.”
Running has become a big part of Bruschi’s life ever since he suffered his first stroke in 2005 when he was just 31 years old.
“I did not run a lot before my stroke. I’ve run three Boston Marathons, and prior to that my longest distance was a mile,” he explained. “All I ever trained for was eight-second bursts. The longest play in football is probably eight seconds and it’s a special teams play – probably the kickoff or kickoff return, and then you get 40 seconds of rest.
“I really had to transform myself as an athlete to become a runner” Bruschi continued. “And from all the way to running almost a five-and-a-half hour marathon to taking an hour off my time in my last marathon last year, it has been a journey.”
Bruschi does all his running for Tedy’s Team, which raises funds and awareness for stroke and heart disease. Bruschi said he is proud when people come up to him and say his stroke awareness campaign helped save their life or the life of someone close to them.
— Tedy Bruschi (@TedyBruschi) October 11, 2018
So far, Tedy’s Team has raised over $5 million since its inception in 2005.
Unfortunately, Bruschi and his committed team are one of the many foundations that will not get to make the 26.2 mile trek from Hopkinton to Boston for the 2020 Boston Marathon, which has been canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic. But Bruschi said that will not stop them from raising awareness or running for the cause.
“That hurt,” he said of the marathon being canceled. “It’s just not going to work Sept. 14 and I totally understand that. The theme for this entire year has been to find a way to do something positive, and if it’s virtually our runners understand that and we will run virtually. It’ll be a struggle to plot a course for 26.2 miles, but this entire year has been a challenge. I think the people of Boston and New England and everyone who have the courage to run a marathon, has that type of determination where they’ll find a way to get it done.”