Why Secret Service Agents Ran the NYC Marathon, Saving a Life While Running a Marathon, Incredible Race Time, and More!

mexico city marathon
Written by Charlie

Find out why these two Secret Service agents ran the NYC Marathon, how a doctor saved a life during that race, a touching story about a father finishing the marathon, and more!

A little over a week ago was one of the most vaunted marathons in the world – the NYC Marathon. This race is one that always has more than its share of stories that come out after it is over, as well as its share of famous people that participate in it. Here are some cool stories from that and other races.

Marathon News Roundup

Why Secret Service Agents Ran the NYC Marathon

Of course, elite marathoners run marathons for work, but how about Secret Service agents running a marathon for work? That is what happened when the president of Estonia, Kersti Kaljulaid, ran her first NYC Marathon. Two Secret Service agents were informed months ago that this might be an assignment for them but they were not told for sure until 4 days before the race. Fortunately, both of them are veteran marathoners and they helped to safely escort the Estonia president to the finish line in a time of just over 4 hours.

Oh, and they did this while running armed and with other equipment! Read More

Saving a Life While Running a Marathon

This story was one of those that just made me so appreciative for the medical professionals all around us. Dr. Theodore Strange, a 25-time veteran of the NYC Marathon, was running it again this year when he heard a cry for help around the 16 mile mark. He went over to help and found that a runner passed out on the ground, foaming at the mouth and with no pulse.

He began to give her CPR and did so until he could do it no longer. They used a defibrillator on her as well and it was not until the 4th shock that she responded. Medical teams had arrived as well and got her to the hospital. She was also a veteran of the endurance distance, being an Ironman finisher. Apparently the cause for her condition was a blood clot in her artery during the race. She is now fine and calls the doctor her hero for saving her life.

Dr. Strange went on to finish the marathon, an hour slower than he had planned, even though his body had already began to cramp up on him for the over 20 minute stop. Read more

Heartwarming Story of a Dad Carrying His Son Over the Finish Line

Another NYC Marathon story. This one is about a Dad who was running it to raise money for research on Down syndrome, something his new son had just been born with. I really do not want to try to even tell the story on my own here because it sounds so much better from his perspective so definitely go over here to see what happened and why he did it. Read More

Incredible Race Time

Running a marathon in the low 2 hours is an absolute incredibly feat. For mere mortals like most of us, running a marathon even in the high 2 hours is an incredible feat! But, how about running 100 miles of a trail race in just 12 hours and 8 seconds?! That is what ultra runner Zach Bitter did at the Tunnel Hill 100 miler this past weekend.

That is just insane! That equates to an average pace of 7 minutes and 17 seconds per mile – for 12 hours. Yeah, just amazing! If you think that pace is just ok, go out and try to do it on a trail! I have run a bunch of trail races and running that pace means that more than your legs are moving fast – your eyes are constantly scanning the trail floor for any dangerous elements that could throw you on your face.

By the way, he actually holds the American record for running 100 miles anywhere – 11 hours and 55 minutes, so do just a little slower than that on the trail is just ridiculous!

Congrats, Zach! If you want to see how someone likes this gets their training in while traveling, check out this post.

A New Antarctica Marathon – But You Should Choose a Different One

Someone told me about a new Antarctica marathon (that is actually taking place on the continent of Antarctica – many are not on the actual continent) and it is being put on by an adventure group that does not seem to have any experience with races themselves. Instead, their big draw involves the first 12 finishers getting to fly back to South Africa aboard a Gulfstream private jet while the last 12 have to wait overnight and fly back on a supply plane.

Oh, and it costs $24,000 for those 5 hours on the ice. If you have that kind of money for a race and you want to do it in Antarctica, might I suggest you look at running the Ice Marathon. This is one of many events put on by ultrarunner Richard Donovan who’s World Marathon Challenge was the inspiration of my Running Round the World event (except he ran on all 7 continents in the time I ran on 6). He has been to Antarctica for marathons he puts on many times and I have never heard a bad thing about his events – in fact, even world-class runners Ryan Hall and Michael Wardian ran his 7 continent race and loved it!

The Ice Marathon costs €15,000 and comes with way more (except the Gulfstream – but you could probably fly that for the extra $7,000 you would save!) as well as an experienced runner to put on a real racing experience.


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About the author


Charlie has been an avid traveler and runner for many years. He has run in marathons around the world for less than it would cost to travel to the next town - all as a result of collecting and using miles and points. Over the years, he has flown hundreds of thousands of miles and collected millions of miles and points.
Now he uses this experience and knowledge to help others through Running with Miles.


  • There always seems to be crazy stories form Marathons, a novice placed third in Ireland this year and almost sure it was her first year to run. Pretty impressive.

    Not as brilliant as the doctor in this piece, but marathons seem to push people to their limits, usually in a great way.

  • I know Russia hates Estonia but Estonia has a population of 1.3 million! This is like giving secret service protection to the Borough President of the Bronx. Have had it with these small entitled countries. What a waste of money.