Karen Abutnuttin, a 35-year-old mother of none from Canada, recently surpassed the record for least amount of social media posts during a training cycle. The record was previously held by the local Beardy Guy, Jack Ingoff, at two posts, both of which featured Ingoff complaining about the rising cost of local 5ks.
“Jack set the bar pretty high,” Karen said. “But I wanted to test the boundaries of what it means to not only be a runner but a woman runner as well.”
Karen went an entire 16-week training cycle without sharing a single post about her training.
“It was tough some days when I had a really good workout and wanted to shout it from the rooftops,” she said. “There were times when I sat staring at my phone, debating whether to hit send on a long post I had just written. In the end it was worth it to hit cancel instead.”
Karen’s biggest challenge came halfway through the training cycle when Twitter announced it would increase its character allowance to 280. It was at this point in the training cycle when Karen decided to commit to chasing the record.
“It was a difficult time when that happened and then when I decided to continue forging ahead, I was tempted to tweet about my attempt to set the record but figured it would go against the Guinness rules if I inadvertently mentioned running in a tweet.”
At the culmination of the long and quiet 16 weeks, Karen ran her local marathon and continued to extend her record by not even posting a picture of her medal the following Monday. The internet only learned of her feat after her mother posted a proud congratulatory message on Facebook. Friends started texting her immediately asking if her mom’s claims were fake news.
“Some were hurt that they didn’t know I had been training for the race,” Karen said. “They felt deceived. But when I told them about the record, they were fine.”
Karen recently submitted her record to the coveted Guinness Book of World Records. Her attempt was met with some criticism from internet threads such as Letsrun.com, who felt that if no one was watching her not post to social media sites, should the record still be ratified?
“Who’s to say she didn’t post a picture of her watch in a weak moment at 3 a.m. and then delete the post?” asked one poster.
Others tried to research her activity on less-known social media sites, such as Google+. A “Karen Abutnuttin” was found to have a profile on the site and as a result posters attempted to friend her to view the private profile. When asked why she didn’t accept the requests Karen responded, “Google+ is still a thing?”
In the meantime, Karen began posting pictures of her post-long run meals and foam rollers as soon as she started training for her next race.
“All that hard work and I still didn’t qualify for Boston,” she said. “I guess it doesn’t matter whether or not you post about it on social media.”