From a Mine to a Marathon: Edison Pena Completes The NYC Marathon

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Chilean miner Edison Pena

After spending 69 days trapped in a mine, it’s no wonder Edison Pena refers says that “running makes you free.”

Edison Pena, one of the 33 miners who spent more than two months trapped in a mine in Chile, completed the New York City Marathon today. Though he needed ice packs for his knees and reportedly had to walk/hobble part of the way, he pulled through.

(See how marathon runners can avoid post-race blues.)

Nicknamed “the runner” by his fellow miners, Pena would run each day while trapped, with a wooden pallet tied to his waist with a rope in order to build his strength. Pena, who is also known for his love of Elvis Presley songs, even had his boots cut down below the ankle while in the mine, specifically so he could run. When word spread of his daily runs, organizers for the Marathon invited the miner to run.

He told a translator that his motivation for running was his drive to encourage others. “I also want to especially motivate young children and youth to run because running makes you free,” he said.

Reportedly, Pena didn’t run more than 6 or 7 miles a day while trapped but still managed to complete the 26.2 mile race. Which raises the question, is there anything this man can’t do? (via the Associated Press)