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High Intensity Interval Training (HITT) sounds really extreme, especially to a group of seniors in their 70s, 80s and 90s. However, when Linda Borgmeyer, MSK, OTR/L and Nicole Barreto of La Posada (a premier Kisco Senior Living Community) told the seniors all they had to do was meet three times a week for 30 minutes to get the recommended amount of physical activity in, they were sold. Residents who were feeling down or tired started to experience drastic improvements after attending the HIIT classes. The group developed a strong camaraderie, and eventually talk of doing a 5K came up. Borgmeyer thought this was a fantastic idea, so she created a team for the Garden of Life 5K. Residents trained at the community for several weeks leading up to the race and had a pasta party to load up on carbs before the race. On April 13, 17 La Posada residents competed either in the 5K or one-mile course.


“I am thrilled the HIIT classes are so well received. I walk residents through exercises I do in my own fitness classes and make modifications for varied physical capabilities,” said Borgmeyer. “When they expressed interest in doing a 5K, I saw this as an opportunity for us to all work toward a goal together. We set up markers to create a training course at La Posada, and we trained on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. For some, this was their very first time doing a 5K. I reached out to the event organizers to let them know, and they even added in a one-mile course for residents who wanted to participate but couldn’t do the entire 3.1 miles. It was very accommodating, and we had more people sign up because of it.”


Many of the residents were winners in their respective age groups. Awards were given to first-, second- and third-place participants. The team made shirts that read “La Posada Where Age Is Just A Number.” Though one resident joked about making a shirt with the slogan “You Just Got Passed By An 82-Year-Old.”


“I love their spirit and dedication,” said Borgmeyer. “We trained using the Galloway Method, which suggests that runners do a combination of walking and running. However, we used a combination of powerwalking and a slower walk. The whole point of the HIIT classes and 5K is to show residents they are powerful and in control of their bodies. Our participants ranged from 72 to 92 years. They are truly an inspiration to me.”


La Posada Resident Race Results:




Ages 75-79

2nd place - Addy Van Leeuwen

4th place - Betty Bowen


Ages 80-84

1st place - Ann Mayberry

2nd place - Barbara Bennett


Ages 85-89

1st place - Josie Hassler

2nd place - Blanche Haid

3rd place - Barbara Schaeffer


Ages 90-94

1st place - Ann Langfeldt




Ages 70-74

15th place - John McShane


Ages 85-89

1st place - Steve Dukkony

2nd place - Walter McCarthey


Garden of Life 1 mile+


1st place - Jeanne Grossman

2nd place - Joyce Sandberg

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