American runner sets 13 records in one run! - The Running Channel Advertisement

American runner sets 13 records in one run!

BY: Mark Dredge
18 March 2024

This was never a challenge where records would be broken on the first day. Which, actually, is an astonishing thing to consider.

The idea of running for a full day – for 24 hours – is incomprehensible to almost everyone. The fact that Camille Herron broke 13 records during one event, yet didn’t set her first one until she’d run for 48 hours – and 247 miles! – is staggering.

From there, 42-year-old American ultrarunner Herron collected new road distance records for 300 miles, 500km, 600km, 400 miles, 700km, 800km, 500 miles, 900km, and she broke time records for two days, three days, four days, five days and six days. All were world records, apart from the 48-hour record which is the American record. 

In total, she ran 560.33 miles or 901.76 kilometres in 144 hours. Here’s how – and why – she did it.

GOING FURTHER

Lululemon’s Further was initiated with three main purposes: to showcase products specifically designed for women, to understand physical performance at extremes, and to break records. 

The event, which was held in La Quinta, California, on a certified course which measured as 2.55m/4.1km, brought together 10 women of varying backgrounds and aspirations in a long-distance run with one goal: to take women’s running further than it had gone before.

Further meant different things to each runner. Herron’s goal was breaking records.

SIX DAYS?!

If you sometimes find it hard to motivate yourself to get up early for your midweek runs, then just imagine starting a run on Wednesday morning and knowing you won’t finish it until just after breakfast next Tuesday

The six-day event isn’t actually something new or made up for this campaign, and in the late 1800s, ‘pedestrianism’ saw crowds gather in arenas to watch people engage in competitive walks which lasted for six days – remarkably, it was the most popular spectator sport in North America at that time, until people moved to watching faster-paced things like boxing and baseball. 

The six-day event waned and disappeared before returning in the 1980s, and new records for men and women were set. Herron passed the women’s record of 549 miles at 3.30am on the final night, with six hours left in the challenge. While she’d go on to pass 900km, she fell short of one final record: the men’s six-day. She had hoped to surpass 644 miles or 1036 kilometres, which was run by Yiannis Kouros in July 1984, but after days of running, the records weren’t the only thing that was broken: her body was.

Herron posted an update to Instagram a few days after the event where she shared her post-run recovery. “I don’t feel well right now,” she wrote.

“World Records always break me in every way. 6 days was an extreme overload that went beyond typical muscle/brain fatigue/pain. I was losing any control I had of my organs.” This included incontinence and bowel control. “Somehow I found a way to stay positive, happy, and to keep going. It was worth the pain and suffering.” In a later post, she explained how she got her period on the second day, and she talks of how this affected her, and also how she used it to power herself on.

And then there was all the food. She explained how she had sore lips, mouth and tongue from all the food she had to eat to try and replace the more-than 42,000 calories that the run burnt. During the run, a constant supply of tacos and alcohol-free beer helped to keep her going.

And the prospect of more records.

THE MANY, MANY RECORDS OF CAMILLE HERRON

These new records add to those which Herron has already amassed, where she specialises in running for a very long time. 

There are so many records, we’re certain that we’ve missed a few, but here’s what we found – including the Lululemon FURTHER records in yellow (these records still need to be officially ratified).

50 mile 
100 kilometre track
100 mile road
100 mile track
100 mile trail
300 kilometre track
200 mile track
400 kilometre track
300 mile road
500 kilometre road
600 kilometre road
400 mile road
700 kilometre road
800 kilometre road
500 mile road
900 kilometre road

12 hour track 
24 hour road
24 hour track
48 hour track
48 hour road
72 hour road
96 hour road
120 hour road
144 hour road

Herron has also won many marathons and ultramarathons, including the Comrades Marathon and Spartathlon. She holds the world record for the fastest marathon dressed as a superhero (Spiderwoman, 2:48:51), and she was the youngest woman to run beyond 100,000 lifetime miles, which she passed in April 2022 at the age of 40. 

These new records add to the remarkable achievement of a remarkable athlete. After the six-day run, Herron posted a photo to Instagram of the specially-designed Lululemon trainer she wore, and with it she wrote the caption: to the moon we go.

Based on the lifetime miles she’s run, Herron is mathematically close to halfway there, but these distances and times she continues to achieve have become much more than just moon shots and small steps forward: this is the stuff of giant leaps.

Image from Lululemon

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