Father Advocating For 12-Year-Old Daughter To Run Boston Marathon After She Ran A Sub-3

Following her father's seven day per week training program, Evan Kim is clocking times many adults only dream of

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At 12 years old, she’s already achieved an impressive feat: completing a marathon in under three hours. And now she has her sights set on the 2028 Olympics. 

You’d think Evan Kim, a sixth-grader standing at 5 feet tall, would be drowned out in the sea of adult runners at any race.

However, after recently clocking an astonishing time of 2 hours and 58 minutes at the Ventura Marathon, you can rest assured she stands out at the front of the race among the rest. 

Father Advocating For 12-Year-Old Daughter To Run Boston Marathon After She Ran A Sub-3 1
Photo Credit: REVEL Big Bear

This remarkable achievement not only earned her the title of the fastest female runner in the under-19 age group but also positioned her as the second fastest overall. 

Her podium performance at the Ventura Marathon speaks volumes about her instilled dedication and grit. Despite encountering a foot cramp around Mile 20 during the race, Evan powered on, refusing to succumb to the discomfort, and persevered through the pain to clinch the victory.

Hailing from a family deeply rooted in athleticism, Evan was destined for a life centered around endurance sports. 

Named after Cadel Evans, the renowned cyclist, Evan inherits her athletic genes from her father, MK, a former pole vaulter at Duke University turned running coach.

With her father doubling as her coach, Evan has been honing her skills since a tender age, gradually building her strength and stamina through consistent training sessions.

Father Advocating For 12-Year-Old Daughter To Run Boston Marathon After She Ran A Sub-3 2
Photo Credit: REVEL Big Bear

Unlike her siblings, Evan’s journey into marathon running commenced at an earlier age. Her father’s relentless training regimen, spanning seven days a week, has endowed her with a reservoir of strength and endurance.

Evan’s aspirations extend beyond mere accolades; she harbors dreams of competing in the 2028 Olympics, fueled by her passion for the sport. However, she acknowledges the formidable challenge ahead, particularly the stringent qualifying standards set by World Athletics and USATF.

The barriers she’s breaking do not stop at the Ventura Marathon; Evan’s father, MK, is advocating for her inclusion in prestigious events like the Boston Marathon despite the minimum age requirement of 18.

His efforts to challenge age-related restrictions reflect his desire and belief in Evan’s capabilities and aptitude for these world-class events.

Evan’s achievements have not come without scrutiny to her and, moreover, her father.

Father Advocating For 12-Year-Old Daughter To Run Boston Marathon After She Ran A Sub-3 3
Photo Credit: REVEL Big Bear

Her story has blown up the popular running forum, LetsRun, with many respondents claiming her father is being irresponsible and living vicariously through his daughter.

“She will quit by age 16 at the latest. Dad is stunting her development as a runner by making or allowing her to do Marathons. The role of the coach is to help runners do what’s best for them not just letting them do whatever they want to do.

“I like how the father did not use his name in this article but is very easy to find. He’s a single parent with a daily vlog about his kids running. Not using this for clout at all right? Not trying to profit off his kids at all. Sports parents are the worst.

“My college team (a very good team) volunteered at a road races where a 12 year old broke the state 10k record for the age group. His dad wanted a sit down with all of us to discuss training specifically what workouts and volume we were doing at that age. Not a single one of us was running competitively at 12. He had his son doing 4 workouts a week. Kid did one year of high school xc and quit.

While debates persist about the safety and feasibility of children participating in marathons, Evan remains undeterred, unfazed by the scrutiny that often accompanies her achievements.

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Jessy has been active her whole life, competing in cross-country, track running, and soccer throughout her undergrad. She pivoted to road cycling after completing her Bachelor of Kinesiology with Nutrition from Acadia University. Jessy is currently a professional road cyclist living and training in Spain.

1 thought on “Father Advocating For 12-Year-Old Daughter To Run Boston Marathon After She Ran A Sub-3”

  1. I doubt if “running a marathon” is dangerous; but I worry about the training, especially if it is motivated by the parent(s) rather than the child. I see that her father’s training program is “relentless” – which I think says a lot. She “was destined for a life centered around endurance sports” – is this her choice? Just because everyone else in your family does something does not mean you should have no choice – I don’t care if it is athletics, medicine, military service, or whatever. It would also be interesting to know if (at age 12) she has started menstruating, or if she is an early example of the “female athlete triad” (energy imbalance with or without an eating disorder; menstrual disturbances; decreased bone mineral density with or without osteoporosis).


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