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From Runners World

71-Year-Old Sets Blazing Fast Mile World Record—on Low Mileage

Gary Patton runs only once every three days. The other days? Strength training, and lots of it.

ByJohn A. Kissane TUESDAY, DECEMBER 12, 2017, 2:59 PM

Gary Patton of Rock Rapids, Iowa, gave himself a fitting early birthday gift: a world record in the indoor mile for the 70–74 age group. It was something he’d long pursued, and he had improved his training over the past year to chase the goal.

On December 7, a few days before his 72nd birthday, Patton ran 5:29.81 for the mile on the indoor track at the New York Armory. 

He broke the previous world record of 5:32.4, which had stood for 30 years.

Patton has been a top age-group runner for a decade, and he holds several American records in the middle distance events. But the indoor mile world record had been elusive—and intriguing. 

He first took a serious crack at it last year on the same track, but he ran 5:34.9, missing the mark by two and a half seconds. 

As the race last week got under way, Patton settled in and felt relaxed. Perhaps he was a bit too relaxed. To set the record, he needed to cover each quarter mile in a shade over 83 seconds. But when Patton heard his half mile split time of 2:49.2, he realized he was well off pace.

Read the rest here.