Kat Clewley (right), who lives in Burlington, Ont., ran Sunday's Road2Hope Hamilton Marathon backwards. Her official time was 4:48:42, which qualifies her to hold the first Guinness World Record.

Kat Clewley (right), who lives in Burlington, Ont., ran Sunday's Road2Hope Hamilton Marathon backwards. Her official time was 4:48:42, which qualifies her to hold the first Guinness World Record.
Photo Credit: Courtesy: Kat Clewley/Twitter

Canadian marathon runner sets record running backwards

Share
 Kat Clewley greets supporters as she runs a marathon backwards
Kat Clewley greets supporters as she runs a marathon backwards © Jim Commerford/Twitter

A Canadian marathon runner is backing her way straight into the Guinness World Book of Records for doing the grueling 42-kilometre race while… running backwards.

Kat Clewley, who lives in Burlington, Ont., posted a time of 4:48:42 on Sunday’s Road to Hope Hamilton Marathon. That qualifies her to hold the first Guinness World Record for a woman accomplishing the feat, she says.

“This was the hardest thing I’ve ever done,” the former goalkeeper for Canada’s women’s soccer team at the Pan Am Games told Radio Canada International. “First thing waking up and rolling out of the bed I was definitely walking a bit funny this morning.”

Listen

She said she was thankful for the support of her family and colleagues and friends from the YMCA on Rymal Road in Hamilton, where she works as a program manager, organizing running training groups.

Lise Diebel, a spokesperson for the YMCA in the area, said Clewley used the attention her goal brought to raise money for the YMCA’s after-school and summer program, Beyond the Bell.

“Kat’s accomplishment is truly amazing and we are so glad to have her as part of our YMCA team,” Diebel said.

Retro-running

Clewley credits her dog, a Giant Schnauzer named Vanilla, for getting her into the sport known as “retro-running.”

 Kat Clewley credits her dog Vanilla for getting her into
Kat Clewley credits her dog Vanilla for getting her into “retro-running”. © Courtesy: Kat Clewley/Twitter

“She’s my running partner, she’s almost five and she’s starting to slow down as she’s getting older,” Clewley said.

“She carries a running ball, she drops it sometimes and we lose it. So one day she slowed down even more so, so I turned around and instead of walking I decided to continue running, so I turned around and continued it backwards. And that was really the first time and thought: ‘Wow, this is fun!’ I really enjoyed it I sustained it that day for about ten minutes.”

When they came back from the run, Clewley said she did a Google search on running backwards and realized no one had set a female Guinness record for running backwards.

She had already signed up for the Road to Hope Marathon so all she had to do was to change her goal from running forwards to running backwards.

It took Clewley five months of training to get used to running backwards even though she’s an accomplished long-distance runner with 100-mile ultra-marathons under her belt.

“It’s a sport that you only train two or three times a week because it’s using a smaller muscle group and you’re on the soles of your feet, your heels don’t touch the ground so your forefoot and your toes take a beating” she said. “The added element to this is the fact that your equilibrium is off because you’re running in a way that the body is not used to, your neck is kinked to one side and you’re just not supposed be going that way at that speed for that long.”

Clewley says she has been invited to represent Canada at the retro-running championship in Essen, Germany in July 2016.

The fastest man to run a marathon backwards is Xu Zhenjun, who ran the distance at 3:43:39 in 2004 in Beijing.

Share
Tagged with: , , ,
Posted in Society

Do you want to report an error or a typo? Click here!

@*@ Comments

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

 characters available

Note: By submitting your comments, you acknowledge that Radio Canada International has the right to reproduce, broadcast and publicize those comments or any part thereof in any manner whatsoever. Radio Canada International does not endorse any of the views posted. Your comments will be pre-moderated and published if they meet netiquette guidelines.

Netiquette »

When you express your personal opinion in an online forum, you must be as courteous as if you were speaking with someone face-to-face. Insults and personal attacks will not be tolerated. To disagree with an opinion, an idea or an event is one thing, but to show disrespect for other people is quite another. Great minds don’t always think alike—and that’s precisely what makes online dialogue so interesting and valuable.

Netiquette is the set of rules of conduct governing how you should behave when communicating via the Internet. Before you post a message to a blog or forum, it’s important to read and understand these rules. Otherwise, you may be banned from posting.

  1. RCInet.ca’s online forums are not anonymous. Users must register, and give their full name and place of residence, which are displayed alongside each of their comments. RCInet.ca reserves the right not to publish comments if there is any doubt as to the identity of their author.
  2. Assuming the identity of another person with intent to mislead or cause harm is a serious infraction that may result in the offender being banned.
  3. RCInet.ca’s online forums are open to everyone, without regard to age, ethnic origin, religion, gender or sexual orientation.
  4. Comments that are defamatory, hateful, racist, xenophobic, sexist, or that disparage an ethnic origin, religious affiliation or age group will not be published.
  5. In online speak, writing in ALL CAPS is considered yelling, and may be interpreted as aggressive behaviour, which is unpleasant for the people reading. Any message containing one or more words in all caps (except for initialisms and acronyms) will be rejected, as will any message containing one or more words in bold, italic or underlined characters.
  6. Use of vulgar, obscene or objectionable language is prohibited. Forums are public places and your comments could offend some users. People who use inappropriate language will be banned.
  7. Mutual respect is essential among users. Insulting, threatening or harassing another user is prohibited. You can express your disagreement with an idea without attacking anyone.
  8. Exchanging arguments and opposing views is a key component of healthy debate, but it should not turn into a dialogue or private discussion between two users who address each other without regard for the other participants. Messages of this type will not be posted.
  9. Radio Canada International publishes contents in five languages. The language used in the forums has to be the same as the contents we publish. The usage of other languages, with the exception of some words, is forbidden. Messages that are off-topic will not be published.
  10. Making repetitive posts disrupts the flow of discussions and will not be tolerated.
  11. Adding images or any other type of file to comments is forbidden. Including hyperlinks to other websites is allowed, as long as they comply with netiquette. Radio Canada International  is in no way responsible for the content of such sites, however.
  12. Copying and pasting text written by someone else, even if you credit the author, is unacceptable if that text makes up the majority of your comment.
  13. Posting any type of advertising or call to action, in any form, to Radio Canada International  forums is prohibited.
  14. All comments and other types of content are moderated before publication. Radio Canada International  reserves the right to refuse any comment for publication.
  15. Radio Canada International  reserves the right to close a forum at any time, without notice.
  16. Radio Canada International  reserves the right to amend this code of conduct (netiquette) at any time, without notice.
  17. By participating in its online forums, you allow Radio Canada International to publish your comments on the web for an indefinite time. This also implies that these messages will be indexed by Internet search engines.
  18. Radio Canada International has no obligation to remove your messages from the web if one day you request it. We invite you to carefully consider your comments and the consequences of their posting.

*

One comment on “Canadian marathon runner sets record running backwards
  1. Avatar Steve says:

    Wow what a great feat and accomplishment! It’s close but it is no record.

    The world record is 8 minutes faster and set in 2008 in Rome.

    Still a great run but the facts should be checked.

    http://www.recordholders.org/en/list/backwards-running.html