Playing Forrest Gump in the 1994 Oscar-winning film of the same name, lead actor Tom Hanks abruptly stops running after three years in a row and tells his followers: “I’m very tired, I think I’ll go to home now”.
Jacky Hunt-Broersma could feel the same parallel. On Thursday, the athlete, who suffered the amputation of one of her legs, achieved her goal of running 102 marathons in as many days, setting an unofficial world record in women’s athletics.
The athlete cannot and does not want to stop. She says that she will run two more tests just in case and she will end her challenge on Saturday with 104.
“I could end April with a marathon,” he told The Associated Press.
Britain-based Guinness World Records did not immediately respond to an email requesting comment on the achievement. It can take a year for the organization to ratify a world mark.
Guiness has registered the men’s world record of 59 daily marathons imposed in 2019 by the Italian Enzo Caporaso.
“I’m happy I did it, I can’t believe it,” Hunt-Broersma said. “The best thing was the incredible support I’ve received from people all over the world who have reached out to me and told me this has inspired them forward.”
Hunt-Broersma, 46, began her feat on January 17, completing the marathon classic distance of 42 kilometers and 195 meters (26.2 miles) on a circuit laid out in the shape of a circle near her home in Gilbert, Arizona. , or on an indoor treadmill. Since then, every day has been “repeat and repeat” for this South African that she lost her left leg below the knee due to a rare cancer and that she runs with a carbon fiber prosthesis.
Her initial goal was to run 100 marathons in 100 days to surpass the 95 mark set in 2020 by Alyssa Amos Clark, a non-disabled runner from Bennington, Vermont, who took on the challenge as a strategy to deal with the pandemic.
But earlier this month, after British runner Kate Jayden, also able-bodied, unofficially surpassed Clark’s mark of 101 marathons in 101 days, Hunt-Broersma warned that she would need to run at least 102 events.
With his accumulated daily walking trips, he covered 4,300 kilometers (2,672 miles), equivalent to running from his suburb of Phoenix to Cape Cod, Massachusetts, or from New York City to Mexico City.
At the same time as her effort, Hunt-Broersma gained a massive following on social media and raised nearly $27,000 to help amputee runners get the expensive prosthetics they need.
Health insurance typically doesn’t cover the cost of one, which can exceed $10,000.
Hunt-Broersma, running her 92nd Boston Marathon event this month, is confident her effort will inspire people everywhere to take on the challenge of doing hard things.
What’s next for this endurance runner? A 240-mile (386-kilometer) ultrarace taking place over mountainous terrain in October in Moab, Utah. (AP)