Japanese “Blue Collar” Runner Keeps On Marathoning

He wants to be an example for all amateurs.

He wants to be an example for all amateurs.

Yuki Kawauchi likes to think he is a model for all amateurs. Photo: Run Long Dude

One of Japan’s running underdogs, Yuki Kawauichi, is a force to be reckoned with. In an interview with Japan Running News, the third-place finisher at the Fukuoka Marathon earlier this month says that he will be taking on the 26.2-mile distance again–very soon.

“I’m still sore,” he says of his condition. “My thighs and whatnot are still stiff and inflexible.”

Kawauchi is a “citizen runner,” which means he holds down a five-day-a-week job while training for the marathon. In other words, he’s not a pro. But earlier this year he ran 2:08:37 at the Tokyo Marathon, finishing third.

He said he is running the marathon this weekend for the love of the sport. “Without that I get bored,” he admitted. “I feel that I have to do this at least once a month,” he says.

With just two weeks separating marathons, the shortest span in his career, Kawauchi says he has people telling him that he is doing too much.

Self-coached, Kawauchi is the stereotypical amateur. “Since I’ve been able to come this far I hope it shows other amateurs the possibilities for what they can do,” he says.  “I think I have been inspiring others to work harder.”

For More: Japan Running News