Welcome to the crazy world of running record breakers, where tigers tackle marathons and superheroes fly through 10ks. It’s a world where extraordinary feats are accomplished by extraordinary people – or are they? Here we look at some of the amazing (and in some cases unbelievable) records set by people just like you …
Fastest half marathon run backwards
If you thought that running backwards would mean going a lot slower, then German athlete Achim Aretz might be inclined to disagree. He set the record for the fastest half marathon run backwards in 1 hr 40 min 29 sec at the 19th TUSEM August Blumensaat in Essen, Germany, on 28 November 2009. That’s over six years ago – does anyone fancy a go in 2016?
Longest crochet chain made while running a marathon
In 2014 a runner from Sussex broke the world record for making the longest crochet chain while running a marathon. Susie Hewer, known as ‘the extreme knitting redhead’, completed Virgin London Marathon while creating a 139.4m (457.35 ft) crochet chain in the process. Susie runs to raise money for Alzheimer’s Research UK in memory of her mum and is something of a record collector – having also broken the record for the Longest Scarf Knitted Whilst Running a Marathon. May the yarn be with you Susie!
Fastest marathon in a wedding dress (female)
For the romantics among you, the fastest marathon in a wedding dress (female) is 3 hr 16 min 44 sec and was achieved by Sarah Dudgeon (UK) at the 2014 Virgin Money London. The idea to run in a wedding dress came from a fancy dress marathon Sarah regularly runs in Medoc, France, with her husband. The event falls near their wedding anniversary so every year she and her husband, also a keen runner, dress as bride and groom and travel to France to take part. Sarah says: “I really enjoy running marathons; the training and everything about it. I love running in a dress in France and even add accessories to make it fun. Although I usually run in a shorter frock than the one I had to wear for London.”
Fastest marathon in an animal costume (male)
Tigers are renowned for their speed and agility and so it is fitting that the fastest marathon in an animal costume (male) was achieved by Alex Collins whilst dressed a tiger at the 2014 Virgin Money London Marathon; he completed the race in 2 hr 48 min 29 sec. After being diagnosed with type 1 diabetes in August 2013, Alex was told that exercise would be ‘complicated’. This prompted him to sign up to run the Virgin Money London Marathon to prove that people suffering from the condition could complete such challenges – and also achieve a Guinness World Records title.
Largest kilt race
It’s not just personal records that are broken at events - the largest kilt race consisted of 1764 kilted participants and was achieved at the Perth Kilt Run in Perth, Ontario, Canada, on 23 June 2012. Closer to home the Perth Kilt Run in Scotland has attempted to bring the record ‘home’ for the past three years – could 2015 be a record breaking year for kilted Scots?
Fastest marathon in superhero costume (female)
American Camille Herron not only won her 7th marathon at the 2012 Route 66 Marathon in Tulsa, Oklahoma she also set the record for the fastest marathon dressed as a superhero (female) in 2 hr 48 min 51 sec, knocking 20 plus minutes off the previous record. She was dressed as Spider-Man – well a rather pink Spider-Woman! She said afterwards: “It was not only a wild and crazy experience for me ... but I hope it added to the fun for the spectators and the Route 66 marathon. I’m already to starting to think about what I want to race as next. There’s a cartoon character record, a tutu record, a wedding dress record. Endless possibilities!”
If you want to know more about the records featured, or find out about breaking a record visit guinnessworldrecords.com