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91-year-old vegan sets single-age record at Knoxville Half Marathon

Mike Fremont, 91, Finishes Knoxville Half Marathon in 3:04

With all the evidence pointing to vegans living long healthy lives, it is quite common for plant-eaters to imagine themselves reaching a ripe old age. But running a marathon in your nineties? That's quite a feat!

Mike Fremont proves it's possible. The 91-year-old Cincinnati resident finished the Knoxville Half Marathon this weekend in 3:03:56, setting a world record for his age. 

Ultra athlete, author, and now online-radio host Rich Roll summed up the  accomplishment best via Twitter: “ Wow. 1/2 marathon, but still wow”

"The hills were horrendous," Fremont says, but added that he felt fine throughout the race. "I can't run fast enough anymore to get tired."

Fremont’s time is believed to be a record for a 91 year old, but it falls a few minutes shy of his pending American record at the distance for the 90 to 94 age-group. He ran 2:56:26 for the half-marathon at age 90.

Fremont also holds the American and world records for the marathon in the same age group for his 6:35:47 finish at the Huntington Marathon last November (ratification pending).

Fremont looks like a 60-year-old and he attributes his longevity to a vegan diet. “Training is important,” he told Running Times’ Mike Tymn, “but when you get to be my age, you’re not going to able to train at all unless your body holds up. I simply cannot overemphasize the importance of the plant-based diet to my performance.”

Fremont first began running in his late 30s to relieve the stress of being a single father of three young children. A cancer diagnosis at age 69 halted his consumption of meat and dairy. He believes the change helped shrink his tumor and, along with surgery, killed it off completely.