The 7 Heaviest Runners of All Time

There are so many recreational activities in the world currently. One of the most amazing is athletics which is one of the main events that was hosted at the Tokyo 2020 olympics which started on July 21,  2021. Sprinting is one of the most popular track events with Usain Bolt of Jamaica as a popular name for the 100 meter sprint.

For sprinting, most athletes usually keep a really fit body. They engage in constant workouts to move at the fastest pace possible to win the race. Hence, an intriguing topic for us is noting down the heaviest runners in history. Something you would love to know? Let’s dive in!

1. Chris Solinsky


Chris Solinsky (born December 5, 1984) is a retired American distance runner and college cross country coach from the United States. Solinsky is the current assistant coach of the University of Florida’s cross country team.

Among his many accomplishments, he won eight high school state titles and five NCAA Division I championships at the University of Wisconsin. 

With a run of 26:59.60, he set the American 10,000 meter record and was the first non-African to break the 27-minute barrier in the 10,000 m. This milestone is held remarkable due to Solinsky’s weight of 160 pounds which is very heavy for runners in this category.

2. Reece Prescod

100-Meter-Läufer Reece Prescod bei den IAAF Leichtathletik-Weltmeisterschaften 2017 in London

Reece Prescod (born February 29, 1996) is a sprinter from the United Kingdom. At the 2018 European Athletics Championships, he finished second in the 100m with a time of 9.96 seconds.

He was born in the city of London. Prescod qualified for the 2017 World Championships in Athletics by finishing first in the GB trials, ahead of previous World Championships finalist James Dasaolu. 

At the 2017 World Championships in Athletics, he raced in the men’s 100m final and placed seventh. After successfully defending his British championship in 2018, he placed second in the final of the 2018 European Athletics Championships, trailing compatriot Zharnel Hughes. Prescod weighed about 191 pounds at the recent Olympics and this qualifies him as one of the heaviest runners of all time.

3. Salah Hissou

Salaheddine Hissou is a Moroccan long-distance runner who was born on January 16, 1972. He won the gold medal in the 5000m at the 1999 World Championships in Athletics in Seville. In 1996, he established a world record over 10,000 meters in Brussels with a time of 26:38.08 and earned a bronze medal in the same event at the Summer Olympics in Atlanta.

Hissou was born in the Kasba Tadla village of Ait Taghia. For a sprinter, Salah sits among the heaviest runners of all time with a weight of 136.6 pounds. 

4. Jack Bacheler

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Jack Strangl Bacheler (born December 30, 1943) is a former long-distance runner and two-time Olympian from the United States (5,000 meters in 1968 Mexico City Olympics, and Marathon in 1972 Munich Olympics).

Bacheler, who was born in Washington, District of Columbia, was a founder member of the Florida Track Club in Gainesville, Florida in the late 1960s, and created the club’s unique “orange” emblem. 

He towered over most of his competition, despite being 6 feet 7 inches tall and weighing around 165 to 171 pounds. He is now married to Patricia Bacheler and lives in Clayton, North Carolina. Bacheler retains a place amongst the heaviest runners of all time due to his exceptional weight.

5. Ralph Mann

Ralph Vernon Mann (born June 16, 1949) is a former sprinter and hurdler from the United States. He attended Brigham Young University as an undergraduate and then obtained a Ph.D. in Biomechanics from Washington State University. 

Mann won his first NCAA 440 yard hurdles championship in 1969, clocking a mark of 49.6 seconds. He also earned a silver medal in the 400 m hurdles at the 1972 Olympics. Ralph was an AAU champion five times. More amazing is that Ralph accomplished all of this while weighing 190 pounds, one of the world’s heaviest weights for runners.

6. John Akii-Bua

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Akii-Bua began his athletic career as a short-distance hurdler, however he did not make the 1968 Olympics. Malcolm Arnold, a British-born sports coach, introduced him to the 400-meter hurdles.

With scant competition experience, he was not a great favourite for the 1972 Summer Olympics in Munich after coming fourth in the 1970 Commonwealth Games and running the fastest time of 1971. Despite sprinting on the inside lane, he won the final there, achieving a world record time of 47.82 seconds. 

Akii-Bua also went ahead to represent Uganda at the 1980 Olympics. John makes it to the list of the heaviest runners of all time with a weight of 170 pounds.

7. Marian Sutton

Marian Rosemarie Sutton is a long-distance runner from England who was born on 7 October 1963. She won the Chicago Marathon twice and represented Great Britain at the Summer Olympics in 2000 as well as multiple IAAF World Half Marathon Championships. She competed in the marathon for England at the 2002 Commonwealth Games, finishing eighth.

Sutton rose to fame as a marathon runner after finishing fifth in the Chicago Marathon in 1995. Then, resolved to compete in the 1996 Summer Olympics, she and coach Bud Baldaro planned training to prepare for the heat in Atlanta.

She was not chosen for the British squad, which was led by Karen MacLeod and Suzanne Rigg, who were joined by Liz McColgan. Despite the rebuff, Sutton went on to win the Chicago Marathon in 1996 and the double triumph a year later. Sutton also sits among the heaviest runners of all time with a weight of 148 pounds.

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