British astronaut to run a marathon in space

AP News
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Posted: Dec 04, 2015 11:17 AM
British astronaut to run a marathon in space

LONDON (AP) — A British astronaut will attempt to run a digital version of the London Marathon in space, as part of his 173-day mission to the International Space Station.

Tim Peake will run on a treadmill as he orbits Earth, at the same time as more than 37,000 people run in the race on the ground in London.

To combat weightlessness, the 43-year-old Peake will wear a harness that tethers him to the treadmill as he runs. He will watch a video of the London course on a big screen in front of him.

"The London Marathon is a worldwide event," Peake said. "Let's take it out of this world."

The London Marathon is on April 24.

NASA astronaut Sunita Williams is the only other person to have run a marathon in space. She ran on a treadmill in 2007 at the same time as the Boston Marathon.

Peake ran the London Marathon in 1999 in 3 hours, 18 minutes, 50 seconds. He said he is not expecting to beat that time next year because his medical team will be monitoring his preparations and run carefully to ensure he is at optimum fitness for his return from space eight weeks later.

"I don't think I'll be setting any personal bests," said Peake, who is hoping to finish in less than four hours.

Peake begins his mission on Dec. 15.

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This story has been corrected to show that Peake will be the first man to run a marathon in space, not the first person, and that Williams ran the first marathon in space in 2007, not 1997.