‘Women in Adventure’: Garmin Spotlights Marathon Record Runner Chau Smith

You’d be hardpressed to find a runner in their 70s as accomplished as Chau Smith. But for her, it’s not just about the challenge. It’s just what she likes to do.

Few people are able to say they’ve run over 100 marathons. (As of 2020, 594 people in the U.S. were registered members of the 100 Marathon Club.)

Even fewer people have finished the ultimate marathon challenge: running seven marathons on seven continents in 7 days. Usually, only a few dozen people achieve this each year.

And astronomically fewer people have done both. Meet one such person, Chau Smith.

Now 74, she’s racked up quite an impressive running resume:

  • Running seven marathons on seven continents in 7 days as part of the Triple 7 Quest in 2017 (the other major organizer of this feat is the World Marathon Challenge)
  • Running eight marathons on eight continents in 8 days, as part of the Triple 8 Quest in 2018 (with the addition of Zealandia/New Zealand)
  • Finishing over 100 marathons
  • Running a marathon in all 50 U.S. states

Record-setting or not, this woman loves to run. And she began running at age 48. “Being told I couldn’t do something makes me want it to it even more,” said Smith. Running is her remedy — a challenge, a passion, a path to adventure.

Runtime: 3 minutes

This film is part of Garmin’s Women of Adventure series. The series is all about sharing stories of women who have overcome great obstacles, accomplished amazing things, or who simply aren’t bound by convention. Meet all the Women of Adventure here.

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Mary Murphy

Mary Murphy is the Managing Editor of GearJunkie and serves as the leader of Lola Digital Media’s DEI Committee.

She has been writing about hiking, running, climbing, camping, skiing, and more for seven years, and has been on staff at GearJunkie since 2019. Prior to that, Mary wrote for 5280 Magazine in Denver while working as an outdoor instructor teaching climbing, kayaking, paddleboarding, and mountain biking at Avid4Adventure. Based in Denver, Colorado, Murphy is an avid hiker, runner, backpacker, skier, yogi, and pack-paddleboarder.

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