Mike Fremont, 96, to attempt American record at Grand Blue Mile / April 19, 2018
Grand Blue Mile race officials are proud to announce Cincinnati native Mike Fremont, at the age of 96, will attempt to set an American record in the road mile at Grand Blue Mile on Tuesday, April 24. He is the current single-age world marathon record holder in the 88-and 90-year-old age categories and the single-age world half marathon record holder in the 90 and 91 age categories.
“We can’t wait to welcome Mr. Fremont to the Grand Blue Mile and celebrate his tremendous achievements in active living,” said Chris Verlengia, Wellmark Blue Cross® and Blue Shield®’s senior brand marketing manager and Grand Blue Mile official. “His story speaks to the heart of the event’s mission to promote sustainable, healthy lifestyles. He’s an incredible inspiration to individuals looking for a relatable example of how consistency pays dividends when it comes to practicing good habits.”
Healthy lifestyle and diet contributes to longevity
After the death of his first wife in 1958, Fremont was faced with raising three small children. At that point, he decided to take up running as a stress reliever. He waited a dozen years before officially entering a race, and didn’t post his best times until after turning 60. Since then, running has been a near daily ritual for Fremont.
His training regimen consists of running 10 miles three times per week. When he’s not lacing up his running shoes, Fremont races canoes long distances (now for 55 years) to stay active.
“The reason I continue to run is simply because I can,” he said. “But, it’s really the importance I place on a healthy diet that is key to my performance.”
Fremont will attempt to establish the record as part of the Grand Blue Mile recreational division, scheduled for 6:15 p.m. on Tuesday, April 24. Members from Drake University’s cross country and track & field teams will accompany Fremont as part of his pace team.
“I suggest you have a hearse ready for me at the finish line,” Fremont joked before reflecting. “I know I’m lucky to still be running, and I don’t want to take a single day for granted.”
Second record attempt at Drake Relays
Fremont will also attempt a World Record for the 95-plus age category in the men’s masters 800 meters at the 109th Drake Relays presented by Hy-Vee on Friday, April 27, at approximately 10:21 a.m. The current record, 6:02.94, was set by Herb Kirk in 1991.
“I’ve known Mike Fremont since shortly after he set his first World Record,” said Blake Boldon, Franklin P. Johnson Director of the Drake Relays. “The experience he’s gained in the last few years has prepared him for a big week of American and World Records in Des Moines. His humor, toughness and positivity distinguish him as one of the greatest athletes I’ve ever had the chance to know.”
Registration for the Grand Blue Mile is open and costs $20 for youth (ages 17 and under) and $25 for adults until April 21. Event proceeds support Iowa Kidstrong school-based fitness programs and the historic Drake Relays.