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Trails of perspective

Zach Szablewski (right) and his wife, Apryle

A 2008 Calvert High School graduate now living in Washington has noticed an uptick in the number of people frequenting local trails.

Dr. Zach Szablewski, a physical therapist, and his wife, Apryle, are in Issaquah, Washington.

Szablewski said he has noticed, with many things being closed in the city and schools being out of session, an increase in people on trails.

He would be several miles out on a trail in an obscure location and estimated he would be running upwards of 14 to 15 hours on a trail any given week.

He said he is seeing more people out on trails.

One of the first things Szablewski noted was he had a race approaching, and it was bumped back.

His first reaction was, “I don’t know why they canceled that.”

But, it’s more than just him or other races. It’s trying to protect people in population that’s more vulnerable, he said.

“I know how much work goes into planning those things,” he said.

Szablewski said officials all have put safety first in canceling events. A race seems trivial in the context of what’s going on, he said.

He had plans to participate in the Boston Marathon this year and return to Ohio to visit his parents. He said the family quickly realized that’s not going to be a good idea.

The marathon has been rescheduled to the middle of September.

“Yes, it’s going to be a little bit trickier,” he said about the plan.

Szablewski said it seems as though people are shopping for necessary items.

Washington’s governor had implemented an order of no groups larger than 250, and an announcement followed by the Seattle area’s school system, he said.

“That announcement (about school closures) came out shortly thereafter,” he said.

Szablewski studied exercise science, pre-physical therapy and biology at Baldwin-Wallace College, worked at Rocky Mountain National Park and went into physical therapy school at University of St. Augustine in Austin, Texas.

He said he graduated with a doctorate of physical therapy and moved to Seattle in December 2015.

Szablewski worked in home-health therapy with a home base at the main office. He said he found home health to be fun, and it was challenging.

“Also very stressful,” he said.

Szablewski now serves as a physical therapist at nursing home in Issaquah and walks across the street to work.

He said he typically works Sunday through Thursday, but it’s proven not to be as useful with the current situation. He now has been working Monday through Friday.

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