Spare a thought for Julie Maxwell of Kasson, Minnesota who after 33 1/2 years (or 21,212 days of straight running) fell and broke two bones in her right ankle bringing to an end the longest running streak of any female in the USA...and probably the world.
According to TwinCities.com
Maxwell, an assistant public defender with the Third Judicial District, said she started running every day in the middle of the summer of 1978 when she was working as a high school teacher in Faribault.
"I think by the end of the summer, I felt, 'Hey, I kind of like this,' " she said.
Her daily runs have been as long as a marathon - 26.2 miles - to just a single mile, the minimum requirement to maintain Running Streak Association status.
Maxwell said she doesn't know what her total mileage amounted to, but she said a typical run for her would be about three to five miles. Three miles a day multiplied by 12,212 days amounts to more than 36,636 miles....much greater than the circumference of the Earth, which is about 25,000 miles.
To keep her streak alive, Maxwell has gotten up in the middle of the night to get a run in. She has run everywhere from Berlin to Singapore to the Caribbean. Maxwell is just one of a growing number of people who have a compulsion never to miss a day of running, there are no prizes or remuneration for holding the record, just a place on the list of the United States Running Streak Association, the governing body that tracks and certifies the country’s longest running streaks.
The official definition of a running streak, as adopted by the United States Running Streak Association, Inc., is to run at least one continuous mile within each calendar day under one's own body power (without the utilization of any type of health or mechanical aid other than prosthetic devices). Just as importantly, runners have to have a streak of 1 year or more.
Currently there are over 300 runners on their active running streak list. The longest running streak in the USA is held by Mark Covert of Lancaster, Ca who at 61-years-old has run consecutively for 15885 days or 43.47 years. Covert has also run in competition finishing in 7th place at the 1972 US Olympic marathon trials in 2:23:35 and has a personal best of 4:09 for the mile. He has run an estimated and amazing 130,000 miles..
Astonishingly this is only the second longest streak of running in the world. The top honor goes to British runner Ron Hill who won the Boston marathon in 1970 with a time of 2:10:30 and and took a new course record by 3 minutes. Hill has built up a streak in which he has not missed a day of running since December 1964, that’s over 47 years!
And they say that Triathletes are obsessive!
Thanks to Danny Ward, our British Bureau Chief, for this story.