24hr Treadmill World Record Attempt

This Friday Kyle Greig, ultra runner and co-host of running podcast Tartan Running Shorts, is attempting to break the world record for the furthest distance run on a treadmill. Below he's answered some of our questions about why he has chosen this particular challenge and the intricacies of running for 24hrs on a treadmill! 

What world record/s are your attempting to break?

The official Guinness World record for 24 hours, set by Bjørn Tore Kronen Taranger in Bergen, Norway, on 11–12 October 2018, stands at 164.36 miles (264.52 km). I may also try and break the treadmill 100 mile world record set by Zach Bitter this year of 12 hours and 9 minutes.

Why have you chosen this particular challenge?

Without a race or a goal, I really struggle to motivate myself to train frequently and I wanted to do something that gets my juices flowing but also terrifies me! So I looked at the treadmill world records and thought that would be a great idea and it is within my reach. I doubt the official land records for the same distance would be doable for me!
I also think I needed a challenge that really gets me into a dark dark place as it really proves to yourself where your limits are and you certainly come out a stronger human being. Also raising money for two charities close to my heart is a real motivator and something that I feel I should support during this pandemic. When it gets tough, I will know that people are going through a much tougher hardship than I am. For me, getting the opportunity to run and do something like this, is truly humbling.
More info on the charities are here: https://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/KyleGreig

How does running on a treadmill differ from standard running?

The main difference is there is a moving platform underneath you compared to non treadmill running and with that your running biomechanics will differ slightly. The sheer monotonous nature of running with no end destination can be challenging for the mind compared to some of the epic trails I have ran on! The rules also state that you can’t hold onto the handrails so I am going to make sure I run in a straight line for 24 hours! If I touch it, I’m done.
It’s therefore been a key component to train on the treadmill to ensure the body and mind are ready for this challenge!

Do you have a pacing strategy for breaking the records?

Yes - but you will just have to watch the live feed for 24 hours! Joking aside, I will likely run to break the 100 mile record which is currently 12 hrs and 9 minutes held by Zach Bitter so my first half will be around 7:15/mile and the second half likely a lot slower than that! I also have to take some breaks so I will need to allow myself a buffer in case I need to head to the toilet, eat some pizza or just take some mental time off the mill!

What/how are you going to keep fuelled throughout the 24hrs?

II have been using Active Root for a number of years now and will therefore be gaining most of my liquid carbohydrates from the gel and powder sources. For such a long distance, there is always a higher risk of GI stress and I find the ginger in AR has got me through some of my ultra races (inc the British 100km Championships where I finished 3rd ). Later in the challenge, I may find some solid food and ask my team to get me a pizza if the shops are still open…

Do you have any entertainment planned whilst your running e.g. British Bake Off???

We are hoping to do a live feed for the event and encourage people to get involved in the challenge and will have some live interviews. There is also a CHAS Sporting Quiz that will be taking place during my attempt so lots for the audience! As for me, I might watch some programmes and listen to some good music. If anyone has any good suggestions of songs feel free to add on a Spotify playlist called TRS Playlist to provide some much needed motivation!

What or how has your training changed to prepare you for the challenge?

Depending on my racing goals for the season, I would usually be doing either fast paced training (around 5k to marathon paced efforts) or some longer hilly trail runs. This time around, I’ve spent a lot of time running on my treadmill with runs ranging from 5k to 40 miles and the other runs outside mainly being on flattish surfaces. My mileage has also been a lot higher with the last few weeks averaging 105-110 miles per week. 

Best of luck for this Friday Kyle! If you want to follow Kyle's attempt then check our the TRS facebook page or go to his Just Giving page here.