Six Days in the Dome is probably one of the most unique indoor racing events held in the United States. Hosted at Anchorage, Alaska’s 400-meter indoor track, the event challenges competitors to run for six days straight, with two additional races including 48-hour and 24-hour options. Such races only draw the most daring runners, which makes it a fitting backdrop for setting a unique world record.
This weekend, while participating in the 24-hour event, 28-year-old Andrew Snope broke the 24-hour barefoot world record. The Savannah, Georgia native covered 136.98 miles in the allotted time, beating New Zealand’s Pete Wayne’s previous record by more than five miles. To break it down, that is about five and a quarter marathons in a row, averaging 5.7 miles an hour. “You feel pretty ecstatic,’’ Snope told the Alaska Dispatch. “Your senses are really heightened. To take a shower is ecstasy. To sit down is mind-blowing.”
Though he has always had a love of the outdoors, Snope is relatively new to competitive running. About three years ago, he was inspired to pick up the sport after reading the popular novel Born to Run. True to the running practice the book details, Snope was immediately drawn to minimalist running, and found he had a knack for it. Since then, though he even claims to have won vouchers for running shoes, Snope has preferred to practice barefoot. “It just informs my form,’’ he said. “My running is all about efficiency, and that’s why I’m able to run long distances in relatively short periods of time.’’
Though it may seem difficult, Snope’s shoeless record is only about about 50 miles behind the 24-hour world record holder for running with shoes, Yiannis Kouros of Greece, who set the record in 1997. Not only that, but since Snope trains at home on asphalt and concrete, his feet showed little signs of wear and tear from the 24-hour endeavor. Instead, he headed home without a single blister, and with a new world title.
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