Brad Kautz reached 111,111.1 miles in late April 2022

Brad Kautz                                    

Dulce, NM
DOB: August 1, 1957
My running career began on October 1, 1978, while I was in the US Navy and stationed on the USS Nimitz, homeported in Norfolk, VA. At the age of 21, and with a history of running intermittently since graduating from high school, that was the day I went for a run of 3 miles and then wrote it down in a log. I didn’t realize it at the time but it was the activity of keeping a record of my running that moved me from “jogger” to “runner.”

I’ve been keeping track ever since, and as of the end of October, 2021, I have recorded
a lifetime total of 109,793.0 miles, reaching the 100K mark in December of 2018. I am a
streak runner, thanks to the influence of my long-time running partner Steve DeBoer.
My longest streak of at least one mile a day was 2,721 days. Two of the hardest single
runs of the past 41 years were my one attempt at doing a 100 mile run, which was
successful, and the mile I needed to keep my streak the next day. Steve was present for
both of these runs and that slow, painful mile was entirely legit.

I have had good years and not so good years. During my highly competitive period,
from 1984 through 1996, I ran 4000+ miles three times, with an all-time yearly high of
4,446.6 miles in 1995. The leanest year was 2004, with 711.0 miles. An upside of the
pandemic was reaching 4,105.1 miles in 2020. I’m on track to reach 3,000+ for 2021
and think I may cut back markedly in 2022, as increasing age is making higher mileage
less fun.

In 41 years I’ve run 544 races, ranging from the half mile, once, to the 100 mile, once.
The marathon has been my favorite distance, completing my 64 th at my Boston debut in
October, 2021. I’ve been under 2:30 seven times, with a PR of 2:25:40 at Grandma’s in
1993. It was the last PR I ever ran at any distance and I find it fitting that it was at what
I’ve always considered to be, mile for mile, my best day at a race.

It has been my pleasure to have won a number of races, mostly between 1984-1995.
One of my most favorite, and surprising wins, was the only marathon victory, coming at
the Warrior Run, a small marathon in the NE Arizona desert, where at age 57 and at
mile-marker 22, I passed the man who had a 13 minute lead on me at the halfway point.
Pushing myself to prevent a collapse and being caught by the man in third place I
wound up passing the leader instead. I followed that fond memory up two months later
by obliterating my marathon PW, which had stood for unchallenged for 31 years.
Since leaving the US Navy in 1980 I’ve lived and run most of my miles in Milwaukee,
WI, August, 1980 to August, 1986, Rochester, MN, August, 1986 to August, 2013, and
Dulce, NM, from August, 2013 to the present.

For 41 years running has provided many memories, good and otherwise, and many
friends, all of whom are remembered fondly. It is a pleasure to write this reflection and
be included in this particular group.