British ultra runner Jasmin Paris has just completed a record setting performance in the grueling Montane Spine Race, an event that covers 268 miles (431 km) along the Pennine Way in the U.K. The event is considered to be one of the toughest ultras in the world, requiring competitors to race nonstop along the route in the dead of the British winter. Paris managed to complete the entire race in just 83 hours, 12 minutes, 23 seconds, shattering the previous FKT by more than 12 hours. In doing so, she also became the first woman to ever win the race, but that’s just the beginning of her story.
The Montane Spine Race is a self-supported run, requiring athletes to carry all of their gear and supplies with them as they go. And since it is nonstop, the race clock is running at all time, giving the athletes the option to stop and rest where they choose. When exactly they do that is up to them and plays a part of the race strategy. But the majority of the other competitors didn’t have to adjust their schedules to account for feeding their child.
The 35-year old Paris has a baby who is just one year old and continues to breastfeed. So, at each and every aid station she stopped to pump milk for her child. Yep, in the middle of an incredibly difficult and demanding race, she took time out to ensure that her young child had milk to continue feeding while mom was out destroying all of the other racers.
To put things into perspective, Paris’ time meant that she completed the entire 268 mile course in just 3.5 days. The previous record was set back in 2016 Eoin Keith, who took 95 hours and 17 minutes to reach the finish line. The previous record for a woman was set in 2017 by Carol Morgan, who finished in 109 hours, 54 minutes. In other words, Jasmin managed to rip up the course, while still stopping to take care of her child while en route. That’s damn impressive indeed.
Major congratulations to Jasmin for not just winning this incredibly tough event, but also reminding us how tough all of our mums are. Well done!