Athletics Magazine

I Ran My 1st Half Marathon At 41 Years Old. She Ran Hers at 6.

By Brisdon @shutuprun

Yes, I said six years old. As in, first grade - the time when most kids are picking their noses, eating glue and learning to read. The time when their most basic form of exercise is swinging, playing kickball and going down the slide as many times as possible at recess.

That might apply to MOST kids, but not to Keelan Glass. On October 12, Keelan completed her first half marathon in 2:46 (Showdown Half in Fairview, Texas). She officially became the youngest person ever to race that distance. She also raised $2,855 for the Pregnancy Resource Center.

Road runner: Keelan Glass, age 6, became the youngest person in the world to take part in a half-marathon

She is darn cute. And I love her purple Road ID

Her next goal? To run a marathon when she is 10 years old. Her mother did express some concern that that might be too much. The story goes that both of Keelan’s parents are athletic (triathletes) and used to run with Keelan in the jogging stroller. That is until she got sick of the stroller and started running with them. By age 4, she was running 5Ks.

There is no mention in the article if they parents pushed Keelan to do this or if it was all her own idea. The article did mention that the family talked to an orthopedist prior to the race, who gave Keelan the go ahead.

I’m not sure what to think (like it’s any of my business anyway, but we bloggers got to comment on all things running, right?). One part of me admires this girl’s determination and passion at such a young age (assuming it is hers and not her parents’). In the age childhood obesity and inactive kids, one could view her as an inspiration.

On the flip side, there is the argument of doing too much, too young, too soon. Is 13.1 miles excessive for six year old joints, muscles, bones and growth plates? I have no idea.  Do kids keep having to do more and more all the time?

What’s next? TIM (Toddler Ironman)?

Are you ever TOO young to run a half marathon? Why or why not?


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