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400-lb. sumo wrestler’s LA marathon in the rain

And the “rain” apparently has not stopped…. :-)

On Sunday, a new Guinness World Record was set in Los Angeles (LA) for the largest man to finish a marathon. The man was a 400-pound sumo wrestler named Kelly Gneiting.

Although many of the folks who followed Gneiting‘s marathon through the rains of LA were congratulatory, a number of folks who commented were decidedly critical about the fact that it took Gneiting 9 hours and 48 minutes to complete the 26.2-mile race.

Well, who in the heck do they (some snotty, self-righteous runners) think they are? :-)

Personally, I have always agreed with Teddy Roosevelt about the place of the critic. The fact that some of these critics were actually IN the “arena” does not make up for their appallingly bad manners.

(Note added March 22, 2011: Come to think of it, give these critics a “handful of salt,” put them in a “vertical bikini,” line them up against some big dude in a sumo ring, instead, and see what they have to say THEN! :-) )

Folk like me, who have NEVER completed a marathon, may find Gneiting’s accomplishment AMAZING! I find myself agreeing with one reader who said:

“This man beat everyone who stood on the sidelines and just watched,” Kristin Schefcick wrote.

Here’s to YOU, Kelly Gneiting, for setting a personal goal and accomplishing it, at great potential risk to your own life, I think. Remember what happened to the man who completed the ORIGINAL marathon after fighting a battle on the Plains of Marathon.

Congratulations, Kelly Gneiting! I find your example inspirational.

-Bill at

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