There’s stamina, and then there’s the kind of endurance Jasmin Paris throws down. The 35-year-old veterinarian at the University of Edinburgh in Scotland not only won the 268-mile Montane Spine Race outright, but she beat the course record, which was set by a man, by 12 hours.
Add in the fact that Paris pumped breast milk for her 14-month-old daughter, Rowan, at check points along the way, and you realize just how superhuman she really is.
“I had to express during the race so it didn’t get uncomfortable,” she told The Guardian. “At the first checkpoint, it slowed me down a lot and I had to hurry afterwards to catch back up.”
Paris completed the course, which runs from Derbyshire in central England to the Scotland border, in 83 hours, 12 minutes, and 31 seconds despite stopping to pump at four of five checkpoints.
“It was the hardest race I’ve done due to the amount of time and weather wise, but I’m really happy because I gave it my best shot. I raced hard and gave it the best I could,” she explained to the BBC.
Paris only slept for three hours and endured temperatures that fell well below zero. To get a sense of just how challenging the race is, when it launched in 2012, only three out of 11 people completed the course. The next year, just 11 of 30 made it to the finish line.
Paris fit 100-mile training weeks into her busy schedule by waking up at 4:00 a.m. to log miles. Even more jaw-dropping is the fact that this was her fist ultra race of this magnitude.
“What’s especially impressive is that it’s her first time doing a race like this – and she was racing against some previous winners,” British ultra runner Damian Hall said. “She showed incredible determination and focus. It’s unusual for someone to do so well when they’re new to this type of racing, which is seriously tiring.”
If you feel like you need to kick your feet up and recover after just reading about this mother’s efforts, you’re not alone.