Last weekend Nike attempted to break 2 hours for the world record of fastest Marathon time. They took the world’s fastest runners (Eliud Kipchoge, Zersenay Tadese, and Lelisa Desisa) and had them run at the Autodromo Nazionale Monza in Milan, Italy. Many years of planning went into this pursuit of breaking the 2014 world record of 2:02:57 for fastest marathon (Dennis Kimetto). No detail was left out, including flying in a hand-picked group of 11 Kenyan and Ethiopian runners for the sole purpose of setting the pace and blocking the wind for the chosen three runners.
Over the past few years, these three runners trained to run 26.2 miles at a superhuman pace of just under four minutes and 35 seconds per mile. This raises questions regarding testing the limits of the human heart and can be seen as a Holy Grail barrier. While the record of fastest marathon has been getting closer to 2 hours over the last ten plus years, 2 minutes and 57 seconds is 2.4 percent away from the barrier of 2 hours. Which is quite a barrier to overcome. But last weekend, Eliud got close. He came in at 2:00:25, 26 seconds over the goal time of 1:59:59. Despite not quite making the goal, the fact that Eliud took 2 minutes and 32 seconds off the world record is amazing. While not 2.4 percent, 2.16 percent is still a huge jump. Of course, this is only one of the first attempts at sub-2 hour marathon, and there are other attempts being planned for the near future.
What are your thoughts on this pursuit? Are these runners really superhuman? I look forward to seeing what other records we can break, not just in running but in other avenues as well. What’s your favorite sport to watch? Did anyone watch this attempt and think that these runners make running that fast look natural? These men were born to run, there’s no doubt about that.