Behind The Scenes of the Juggling Mile World Record
CITIUS MAG reader Ian Anderson alerted us to a wacky and goofy world record attempt this week. If you’ve followed us for the past year, we originated the Blue Jeans Mile (the season begins on Memorial Day and runs through Labor Day) and so we’ll pay attention to some of these interesting runs. Anderson tweeted and emailed us about a Boston University’s Zach Prescott running a mile while juggling three objects.
Here’s how that all game together, according to Ian.
It’s a typical Spring day at Boston University’s Nickerson Field: friends playing baseball, students tanning on the infield, and… a 6-foot-5 man running 70 second 400s around the track?
Tuesday afternoon, Boston University cross country and track and field athlete, Zachary Prescott broke the longstanding world record for the three-ball joggling mile with a time of 4:43.2. The previous 3-ball joggling mile world record of 4:43.8 was set in 1986 by the American joggling phenom, Kirk Swenson.
While world records on the track are typically the result of a culmination of years or even decades of work, Zach approached his run without much thought or preparation.
“I thought I could get the record. So I figured I’d just do that,” said Prescott.
Zach first learned to juggle at a summer camp in middle school, and joggling later came into Zach’s life through Michal Kapral. Kapral is the current Guinness World Record holder for the fastest joggling marathon at 2:50:12.
“I heard about Kapral breaking the joggling record for the marathon at the Chicago Marathon, and I thought maybe I could do that,” Zach says. “But the marathon seemed a bit long.”
Zach had been talking about going after record with his coaches and teammates throughout the spring semester, but because he had been in season, he never had the chance to schedule a time or place to make an attempt.
After a “less than successful” final exam on Tuesday morning, Zach decided to send a message in his team’s group chat asking “When should I go for the record? Today or tomorrow?”
Zach knew that if he was going for the record, he wanted it to count, so earlier this spring he contacted Guinness World Records with his intent to break the record. Guinness responded saying that he needed two timers, two witnesses, and two videos.
Following about 30-minutes of organization, Zach managed to convince some teammates of his to record and time the run, while his coaches would act as witnesses.
All he had left to do was run.
Sporting a Boston University singlet and a Dunkin Donuts hat, Zach had three timers and three attempts, before he broke the record by .6 seconds. After almost 32 years, Zach Prescott broke the world record without a second to spare.
“My season was over so I figured why not? You know?” said Zach.
It was that simple.