Apex triathlete, Air Force veteran attempts 26 races for a good cause

APEX, N.C. (WTVD) -- Training for long distance events comes with a side of selfishness. Saddling this and his desire to tackle something extraordinary, local triathlete Eddie Kenny came up with a way to feed his need and help others.

Not long ago, Kenny's idea of physical exertion was beer league softball. Now, the Apex resident has stepped up his game.

In 2016, Kenny completed his first triathlon and this year alone he's done over two dozen to raise money for servicemen.

"If I can find a purpose, I can kind of have my cake and eat it too. I can be a bit selfish and enjoy a sport that takes up time," said Kenny.

Kenny settled on 26 triathlons in 52 weeks. As for the cause, the 20-year Air Force vet chose a way to help servicemen, women and unwanted pets at the same time. He decided on raising money for Canines for Service out of Wilmington.

"I've had a number of friends be affected by things they saw on the battle ground," said Kenny. "What a great thing I can do with my veteran background and having been a dog rescue foster person, said I'm going to bring those two together."

COVID-19 greatly altered his plan but not his determination. With events cancelled, Kenny got creative making his own courses in order to swim, bike and run the self -required 70-point-3 miles.

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"I strapped a bungee cord around my waist and I swam in a buddy's pool for 42 minutes which is my average 1.2 mile swim to simulate swimming. I've had to find ways to get it done. There was never an option to not finish," said Kenny.

Kenny has overcome a severe hamstring injury and is down to the final leg, so to speak. A long journey concludes with a triathlon in Daytona the first week of December. The only race that didn't get cancelled.

"I've gotten messages from all over the world. I've had somebody reach out from South Africa. Somebody from Australia giving me the, 'Hey, keep it going. What a great cause.' So those are the things when your muscles are achy and you know you don't want to get in the water at 4:45 in the morning on a Tuesday that you get out of bed and you get after it," said Kenny.

The Guinness World Record for 70.3's in a single year is 24, so Kenny would be breaking a record after he completes number 25 this weekend. Of course, those weren't sanctioned events so he'll just have to be satisfied with raising a lot of money for a good cause.
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