24-hour run

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Service members and civilians stationed at Kandahar Airfield, Afghanistan, start the 24-Hour Run for Charity, April 16, 2011.

A 24-hour run is a form of ultramarathon, in which a competitor runs as far as they can in 24 hours. They are typically held on 1- to 2-mile loops or occasionally 400-meter tracks.

Top runners will often run 200 kilometres (124 mi) or more, depending on conditions, and the best can go beyond 270 kilometres (168 mi). Some participants will have a crew to help them, but others just set up a camp with all the gear and supplies they need near the starting area to access each loop. Often 24-hour events are combined with 6-, 12-, and 48-hour events. 24-hour runs have also been held in relay formats, with runners completing a mile each in succession for 24 hours. Often these events are not internationally sanctioned, and are more for charitable purposes.[1]

The world records for the event on all surfaces are 270.363 km (167.996 miles) for women, set by Miho Nakata of Japan in 2023,[2][3] and 319.614 km (198.598 miles) for men, set by Aleksandr Sorokin of Lithuania in 2022.[4]


The first international championship was held February 3–4, 1990 in Milton Keynes, England.[5] A full continental championship was formed in 1992 as the IAU 24 Hour European Championships.[6]

The IAU 24 Hour World Championship is the pinnacle of competition in the 24-hour run. The first IAU Individual Track Championships were held in San Giovanni Lupatoto, Verona, Italy on 22–23 September 2001.[7]

The German website DUV lists 160 24-hour races that were scheduled for 2012, a figure that has doubled over the last 10 years. The longest running 24-hour race is the Self-Transcendence 24 Hour Race Ottawa, Canada which began in 1981.[8]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Bangor Daily News, Bangor, Maine, USA, Style Section, Page 17, "Marathon to raise money for American Cancer Society"
  2. ^ iRunFar: Japan’s Miho Nakata Sets Women’s 24-Hour World Record.
  3. ^ "Japan's Miho Nakata Breaks 24-Hour World Record By Narrow 246 Meters At World Championships". 2023-12-02. Retrieved 2024-01-03.
  4. ^ "2022 IAU 24 European Championships Results" (PDF). Retrieved 18 September 2022.
  5. ^ 'Running' April 1990,Volume 108, p.6
  6. ^ All-Time Winners Archived 2015-04-02 at the Wayback Machine. International Association of Ultrarunners. Retrieved on 2015-03-21.
  7. ^ Michiels, Paul & Milroy, Andy (2013-05-07). IAU 24 Hour Championships . Association of Road Running Statisticians. Retrieved on 2015-03-21.
  8. ^ "Untitled". Retrieved 2013-10-01.