A few months ago, I finally joined the Marathon Maniacs which is a great group of people who absolutely love running (to be an official maniac you have to run so many marathons during a designated point of time). Half the time I don’t feel like I belong in the group because they are all so amazing and constantly rack up tons of miles.
But the man I have been most impressed with is Hal Gensler. He recently shared his story of how he went on a running streak for 25 years. Yes, 25 years of running every single day! And during that time, he ran 64,607.52 miles.
Yes, you read that right… 64 THOUSAND miles!
That means that he ran enough miles to go around the earth at its equator two and a half times. Incredible!
Anyways, I had a chance to do a quick Q&A with Hal… enjoy!
1. How long have you been streaking and how many miles have you racked up?
My streak started on December 4, 1989. From then until December 3, 2014 I ran 64,607.52 miles.
2. What made you decide to start streaking?
I had, in general, back in 1989, been running 6 days a week. On occasion I would not want to run one other day in a week and thus just ran 5. I had missed December 1 and 3 of that year and was very unhappy with myself. So the next week when it came time for my day off I decided to make up for the missed day – and that somehow just lead to my continuing on.
3. How do you get through those days when you really don’t want to run?
I guess I do not think about whether or not I want to run each day. In my mind I do not have a choice and thus I just get out the door and get my run in.
4. What is your favorite running moment? Why?
My favorite moment might have occurred on October 4, 1992 just after I passed the 26 mile mark at the Twin Cities Marathon. The announcer had just announced that he had sighted the leading woman in the 45-49 age group (I was 46 then). When I heard her name, I recognized it as the leading women in her age group in the country at the time – and I saw her off to my right (This was also the US Masters Championship and thus people had to wear tags on their backs as to their age group) – and here I was flying by her. I never did consider myself a particularly good marathoner but this turned out to be a very good day.
5. Any advice to runners to keep the injuries away?
Just listen to your body.
6. What are you looking forward to in 2015?
Just to keep on running – probably shorter in distance and slower in speed – but that’s perfectly OK.
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