Most people couldn’t run a marathon if their life depended on it, but world-record juggler Joe Salter ran the whole 26.2-mile Quad-Cities Marathon backward, while doing what he does best, juggling.
32-year old Joe Salter can practice his juggling skills pretty much anywhere. In the past, he swam a half-mile in the Gulf of Mexico, doing the backstroke while juggling three balls, juggled for 16.2 miles on a bike and ran and juggled for four miles. He also holds the world records for the fastest time to run a mile backward while juggling (7 minutes, 32 seconds) and fastest juggling triathlon (1 hour, 57 minutes), but he was hungry for a Guinness World Record, so he challenged himself to run the entire Quad-Cities Marathon, in Illinois, backward, while juggling. Unfortunately, Guinness rules are very strict and for Joe’s unique feat to qualify as a record, every second of the race had to be recorded, which was impossible as videotaping is prohibited along several miles of the course that run through the Rock Island Arsenal. Although slightly disappointed, Salter found an upside to the whole situation. “I actually feel better, not having the stress,” he said before the race, and indeed the lack of added pressure helped him finish the entire 26.2-mile marathon in just 5 hours and 51 minutes.
Photo: Joe Salter Motivational Juggling/Facebook
“I couldn’t imagine doing it forward while walking,” race director Joe Moreno told the Miami Herald. “The concentration that is required throughout the race is amazing. I saw his calves once in a photo — just a mass of muscle.” Salter’s time qualifies as a new world record, as the Guinness threshold for the category was set at six hours, so even though parts of the race could not be captured on camera, officials of the world records organization encouraged him to send in all the documentation he has. ”I couldn’t definitively say whether his time counts or not until we receive all of the evidence,” Guinness PR Manager Jamie Panas told Sports Illustrated.