The legendary Indian ultramarathon athlete Al Howie (Part 2)

In 1991, Howie ran through Canada for 72 days, a record unmatched for nearly three decades. Two weeks after the journey of life, Howie set a world record at the Sri Chinmoy marathon in New York City, running 1,300 miles, or about 2,100 kilometers, in 16 days.

Howie lived secretly in the following years. He had many health problems, including diabetes, but he often ran from Duncan to Victoria to handle personal problems and then run back.

Beasley describes when the two were chatting at Duncan, Howie wasn’t excited about everything except running.

‘Crazy’ runs

One day, when his colleagues debated how long a horse would run from Toronto to Niagara Falls, Ontario, Ontario, Howie insisted he could do it in a day. His colleagues mocked him, but soon after, he successfully conquered the 125-kilometer challenge.

After moving to a mill at a copper mine in Vancouver Island, BC, 20 kilometers from home, Howie chose to walk to work.

Howie’s actions were quickly noticed by the BC press. While people drive, fly by plane, bus to remote cities, Howie runs, simply because it is cheap. He often slept under the stars.

Al Howie is athletic, because his father is a boxer and his mother is a swimmer. As a child, he was trained from moving with his family to long distances by walking. Photo: Handout.

Al Howie is athletic, because his father is a boxer and his mother is a swimmer. As a child, he was trained from moving with his family to long distances by walking.

In 1978, Howie ran 500 kilometers from Victoria to Port Hardy, the northernmost point of Vancouver Island, to raise funds for charity.

In 1979, Howie ran from Victoria to Prince George to attend the marathon.

In 1980, Howie finished third in the Edmonton marathon before running back to Vancouver Island and finishing the Royal Victoria Marathon in 14th place.

The legendary Indian ultramarathon athlete Al Howie (Part 1)

The late Canadian running leg Al Howie is considered an “ultramarathon legend” with incredible achievements and distances.

Al Howie, born in 1945 in Scotland, and his son to Canada in the early 1970s. He has a habit of smoking three packs of cigarettes a day. Howie later became one of the great long-distance runners in Canadian history. Howie’s story is so interesting that Jared Beasley, a journalist in New York, was attracted to the news. Beasley released the book “Deciphering Al Howie”.

The short marriage with an American woman made Howie become a rooster to raise children. While the two were still fighting for custody of the children, Howie took young boy Gabe to Toronto – the home of the woman he lived with. Because of this, he was wanted by Interpol on charges of kidnapping, and had to temporarily change his name until his dispute with his ex-wife was resolved. Here, in the winter he works in a foundry, in the summer he works in a quarry.

Howie had a daughter, Dana, in 1976 but the relationship with the woman living with each other worsened. He moved to Victoria, British Columbia (BC), in 1978, and started running long distances, sometimes from one city to another. He married Claudia Cole in 1986 and divorced in 2000, then moved to Duncan, BC, to treat diabetes since 2005.

Smoking three packs a day shows that this is a difficult habit to quit. One day, when he felt uncomfortable with cravings, Howie began to walk quickly on the street. He walked about 16 kilometers and stopped.

“I decided to jog to get rid of my bad habits,” he said. Running daily helps reduce cravings.

The distance Howie runs is getting longer. Howie’s first race took place in 1979 in the city of Prince George, BC, with a marathon. Howie ran 820 kilometers from Victoria to Prince George, not taking a ferry, to take the contest and finished third.

Howie’s performance was partly shocking because he was nothing like a runner.