This Guy Subsisted on Beer and Candy to Get Through a 2,190 Mile Run


Karl Meltzer is not your average runner, or even your above-average runner. He recently completed the Appalachian trail, which is 2,190 miles across 14 states in  45 days, 22 hours, and 38 minutes, beating the previous record by about ten hours.

DAY | 46 The most anticipated day on the Appalachian Trail yet. Karl and his crew were up at 3:05 a.m., and Karl went through his morning breakfast routine before hitting the trail at 3:50 a.m. to start his final 85-mile hike to Springer Mountain in Georgia. The trail sections between crew stops today are between 11 and 15 miles.  Karl is keeping around a 3.5 mph pace with some faster sections. Karl left Tesnatee Gap at 5:15 p.m., which is the halfway point for the day.  He has 40 miles ahead of him.  There is no sleep planned tonight.  He’s going to push through and try to beat the record by as wide a margin as he can.  Read more Notes from the Trail at or click the link in my bio #atrun #appalachiantrail #speedgoatkarl

A photo posted by Karl Meltzer (@meltzerkarl) on

Something else he did differently than the previous record holder: his diet. Scott Jurek, who held the record up until now sustained himself on the trail with a vegan diet, while Meltzer subsisted on candy, bacon, and beer, according to The New York Times. This was his third attempt at setting the record, and he really lived it up.

This time, he capped each night with one or two beers and left from rest stops with rainbow-colored Spree candy, Three Musketeers chocolate bars and bacon in his pockets. To save time and keep his energy up, he typically slept less than seven hours a night and instead had an energy drink every 10 miles, downing about five a day. When on another day his support crew found him napping, they gave him a pint of ice cream for a boost.

Essentially, he ran an average of 50 miles in 15 hours per day, while living like a college freshman. Sunday, when he completed his quest, he celebrated with a well-deserved pepperoni pizza and a beer.

We’re not sure how he does it, but we’ll take it. If we can live like that, we might actually be convinced to do the challenge. Might.

[image via Instagram/@meltzerkarl]

[H/T New York Times]

Follow Dana Eisenberg on Twitter.

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