Announcement of the Guinness World Record attempt

At the Calgary Marathon launch party

I am super excited to announce that on May 27th at 4pm to May 28th at 4pm I will be attempting to break the Guinness World Record for ‘Longest distance run in 24 hours on a treadmill’. The record was set by Suresh Arulanantham Joachim in 2004 with a distance of 257.88K. I feel this number isn’t too far off as this past April in Turin, Italy I ran a personal best and new Canadian record 257.093K although the thoughts of compiling such a number bring back painful memories of the anguish and drive enclosed in doing such a thing. Given my limited treadmill experience friends have told me that treadmill running is  easier than road running, guess we will find out. Also the ‘Longest distance run in 12 hours on a treadmill’ stands at 131.35K, I hope this record might go down on race day as well as my 12 hour split in Italy was 134K.

Founder of MitoCanada Blaine Penny and his son Evan Penny

My longest run to this point on a treadmill is 30 minutes, needless to say, I’ve got some work to do. I bought a treadmill…thanks Joanna. I’ll heal up this damn knee and get to work turning this brain to mush and get use to the monotony of marching on the spot for endless hours, sounds like fun huh?!

Alissa St. Laurent

This record will be attempted at the Calgary Marathon Expo during the days approaching the 2016 Calgary Marathon. The Marathon management group has been more than accommodating and has bent over backward to see that this attempt is a success. Alongside me we will have 5 other treadmills attempting 5 other GWR’s. The ultra phenomena Alissa St. Laurent will take a crack at being the ‘Fastest 100K run on a treadmill, female’. Beverly Davey will be attempting the ‘Longest distance run in 24 hours on a treadmill, female’. A group of 12 fast dudes from the Bow Valley Harriers will be attempting the ‘Treadmill, distance run in 24 hour (male team)’ and a group of crazy speedy chicks will attempt the record for ‘Treadmill, distance run in 24 hours (female team)’. All together it’ll be one hell of a show, come on by and bring your popcorn! We also plan to have an open treadmill for the public to hop on and off, running the paces of us record attempting individuals. My average pace will be 5:30 min/km for the entire 24 hours; talking about it sounds easy but I know getting going at that pace will bring a very real hurtful feel of what an attempt like this will take.

My pain cave

All of this is very exciting but is just touching the tip of the iceberg for the reasoning of why we are doing such a crazy thing. One name, MITOCANADA. All 27 of us will be running with one goal in mind: to raise funds and create awareness for children and families afflicted with Mitochondrial disease. Mitochondrial disease refers to a group of disorders. Each of these conditions involves a problem with mitochondria. Mitochondria are tiny structures inside almost every cell in the body. Their main job is to use the food and oxygen that enters the cell to make energy. Almost all the energy your body needs for daily life and growth comes from mitochondria. When mitochondria fail, less and less energy is converted in the cells. The cells may stop working or die. Depending on where the affected cells are, parts of the body may not function properly and many health problems can result. At least 1 in 6000 people have Mitochondrial disease.

That being said, I can’t think of a better reason to do something crazy like this. Stay tuned cuz more and more details will come as they become available.

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