On March 31, 2020 Alyssa Amos Clark ran a marathon-distance of 26.2 miles. In the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic, the competitive runner was unable to compete in any races due to lockdown measures.
Clark decided to set a new challenge for herself of completing a marathon on a treadmill every day until the lockdown ended. She completed a marathon for 95 consecutive days, ending the streak on July 3, 2020 and shattering the world record for “the most consecutive days to run a marathon distance (female)” at 95.
Her initial plan was to run 14 marathons, however lockdown was extended and she decided to continue until it was ended. On day 25, the former Mount Anthony lacrosse star realised she could challenge for a record title after seeing the record to beat was 60, and decided to continue with her daily marathon runs until she had broken the record.
The runs would eventually become such an important part of her daily life as she navigated the effects of the pandemic that she decided to try for 100 consecutive days, and came so close to achieving her goal.
On day 95, however, she became ill and could no longer complete the required distance. Her plan was always to stop at 100 as she had races and adventures planned for the fall and needed time for her body to recover.
Clark has been a runner for most of her life. Growing up in Bennington, she loved sports and would do run and hike in the area.
“My parents never pushed us to be athletes, but it became a huge focus of our lives”, Clark said to Guiness World Records.
In high school she began long-distance trail running and cross-country skiing and continued through college, where she played lacrosse for Williams College.
Out of the 95 runs she completed, she believes her fastest was around 4 hours and her slowest around 4:45. As of completing her attempt, the male record for this challenge was 59 consecutive runs.
“I am so incredibly thankful for the experience of running these marathons and sharing a bit of my journey with others. It truly changed my life in the most unexpected ways and I am deeply humbled by the chance I was given to complete these marathons,” Clark told Guinness World Records. “I also will say it is impossible to run 95 marathons without the undying support and love of a massive community. I could not have achieved this goal without all of the people along the way who believed in me and my dream.”