On I went, out of the wood, passing the man leading without knowing I was going to do so. Flip-flap, flip-flap, jog-trot, jog-trot, curnchslap-crunchslap, across the middle of a broad field again, rhythmically running in my greyhound effortless fashion, knowing I had won the race though it wasn't half over, won it if I wanted it, could go on for ten or fifteen or twenty miles if I had to and drop dead at the finish of it, which would be the same, in the end, as living an honest life like the governor wanted me to. -Alan Sillitoe, "Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner"

Friday, October 28, 2011

Sad, or inspiring?

I could pose that question about myself and my marathon on Sunday, but actually I'm referring to this article. In short, a 400lb man set out to complete a marathon in order to set the world record for heaviest man to do so (beating last year's sumo wrestler).

Not me.
Let me spoil the ending for you: even though the article opens with "Never underestimate the power of the human spirit," he doesn't qualify to set the record as he took too long. His finish time of 13:45 (which includes an hour rest) was beyond the Guinness Book's 10 hour limit.

Is it an inspiration that he tried, or it is kind of sad that he was going after a record rather than trying to improve his health? (As one friend of mine said, "Why not train for a year and a half and do it at 250 pounds?" But remember: he had to stay above 400lbs to set the record.)

The marathon is not the be-all and end-all. It's okay to start with a 5k and work your way up.

Speaking of which... I'm currently en route to DC for my bad-idea marathon. Catch you on the flip side!


  1. Dude only has to shave 3 hours and 45 minutes off his time.

  2. Well, when you look at it THAT way... we should really encourage him to go at it again. Maybe start a facebook group in support?

  3. It's pretty sad that he had to take an hour rest.

  4. I would definitely be more inspired if he'd trained for a few years and knocked off a couple of hundred pounds in the process. Going for a world record here just doesn't work for me.

  5. Good luck tomorrow. Hopefully the weather will cooperate

  6. Thanks for commenting on my blog! Crazy that you saw me at the race, but I guess the shirt is pretty noticeable!

    I hope your marathon went well today.