Man Sets World Record for Running Marathon While Mansplaining

 istockphoto.com

istockphoto.com

For Lee Majors, finishing last Sunday's Sommerstown Marathon was doubly triumphant. When he crossed the line in a time of 3:38:27 the Austin resident notched a personal record—and also became the fastest runner ever to complete a marathon while mansplaining nonstop.

The previous record for fastest marathon while mansplaining was 3:55:14, set at the 2015 Steamtown Marathon in Scranton, Pa.

For Majors, it was a natural goal to pursue. The 33-year-old, a self-described "tech bro" who works at an internet startup, told reporters after the race that he's been patiently explaining things to women for as long as he can remember.

"That's where mansplain comes from, actually," he told a woman standing nearby. "From the words man and explain."

That’s where ‘mansplain’ comes from, actually. From the words ‘man’ and ‘explain.’
— Lee Majors

A veteran of five previous marathons with a PR, before Sunday, of 3:45, Majors also knew he had the physical ability to beat the previous record. 

Still, it wasn't an easy feat.

First, said Majors, he had trouble finding training partners.

"I think I went through six or seven woman friends in my first two months of training," he said. "They were all strong runners, but each of them quit after, like, one long run with me. Which was weird."

He paused to wave over a petite East African woman who had just stepped down from the winners' podium.

"Long runs are important when you're training for a marathon," he told her, slowly.

"It helps you build endurance," he added, as handlers bundled her away.

The race itself also presented challenges. Two independent observers had to accompany Majors by bicycle "every step of the way" to monitor Majors' output, said Oscar Goldman, a spokesperson for Guinness World Records.  

"Any lapse in mansplaining (during the race) would have resulted in a disqualification," Goldman said. "It had to be a constant stream of condescending explanation, preferably on a topic already well understood by the listener." 

Majors accomplished that and then some, beginning in the starting corral, where he told the woman next to him that "the marathon is actually 26.2 miles, not just 26" and continuing well into the finishers chute, where he described to a female volunteer, a graduate student in engineering, how space blankets work.

In between, Majors kept the pace—of running and mansplaining—steady. During a surprise bathroom stop around mile 16, observers listened while Majors, from inside a portable toilet, shouted to a group of women watching the race, "Actually, when the little dial on the door is red, that means the toilet is occupied." 

En route to his dual records Majors also mansplained scores of other things, including tailwinds, electronic timing mats, electrolytes, and the story of Pheidippides.

"There was no shortage of ladies on the course," he said, "and no shortage of things to explain to them."

Asked what's next, Majors laughed and said he was most interested in a beer and a cheeseburger.

After that?

"I'd like to work on my speed, maybe get that PR down to a sub-3:35," he said.

"By the way," he said, looking directly at a female journalist, "PR stands for 'personal record.' And sub means 'under.'"