Busy Eva a real record-breaker

Eva Clarke underneath her existing World Records. Photo: Tom Parry

Stefan Bradley

Eva Clarke set her 17th Guinness World Record on June 4 after completing 6669 shuttle runs over a period of 19 hours, 57 minutes, while also beating her fundraising goal for Beyond Blue.

The Sale-based high school physical education teacher, fitness trainer and black belt, who founded Frontline Australia Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu & Fitness Academy last year with her husband Scott, is no stranger to pushing herself, but this challenge came close to defeating her.

“I didn’t prepare physically for this challenge because I wanted to see what I was capable of and what I would do when I got slapped in the face with the possibility of giving up,” Mrs Clarke said.

“Mark my words when I say I was on the edge. I didn’t want to go on; the only reason I did was that my teammates were there helping me. They made sure I kept going; they were my safety net. Anytime I needed them, they were there. They were the reason I got to the finish line.”

Mrs Clarke began her world record attempt at 9am, and kept going until 4.57am.

Total rest time, including eating, drinking and toilet break, was one hour and 52 minutes.

Mrs Clarke’s goal was completing 6666.6 x 15 metre shuttle runs in 24 hours while carrying a backpack weighing nine-and-a-half-kilograms.

To beat the record, she had to complete a distance of 100km, or 100,000 metres.

Her end result was 100,386.45 metres.

The fundraising goal was $6666.6 for Beyond Blue, with the cumulative total hitting $7512, to raise awareness about mental health and help fund services.

Mrs Clarke has previously broken world records for feats such as 24-hour burpees, push-ups and pull-ups.

Despite the enormity of the challenge, she told the Gippsland Times she felt mostly fine in the aftermath.

“I’m not physically too bad. It was the emotional rollercoaster that got me. I also had a cough lingering during the attempt. I’m negative for COVID, but there’s a flu going around. I also got a blister during the run that was more determined than me,” she said.

“I loved how challenging I made it. When you go outside for a run, you see different scenery. But each shuttle run was 15 metres in the same location. I felt like I was not getting anywhere. It was as if the walls were closing in. I think about that with mental health and depression, maybe that’s how they’re feeling. As for the weighted pack, it sure made things harder. My traps, shoulders, lower back and feet were feeling it. It went from one area to another.”

Mrs Clarke’s son Harley had planned to do some shuttle runs, but was sick. In his place, Max Glover-Hell did 666 shuttle runs, and Eva Tobias and Peri Onley did a combined 333 shuttle runs.

Not all challenges on the day were fitness related – Bartholomew Butcher from Black Flag Barbering raised more than $2500 by cutting hair every 30 mins from 8.30am to about 3am.

Mrs Clarke thanked the community for their support.

“We achieved our goal. Nothing can be done alone. It’s all about doing it together. A massive thank you to everyone. If others are doing such challenges I’d love to help or get involved. They can reach out to me and we can help break records together,” she said.

“I am already lining up another challenge in October. Watch this space. I want to reclaim a Guinness World Record I set that someone else has since beaten, to benefit Burpees for Boobs.”

People can also get involved by donating to Mrs Clarke’s Beyond Blue page: https://team-beyond-blue.raisely.com/eva-clarke

Anybody needing assistance with mental health can contact Beyond Blue on 1300 224 636.

Eva Clarke stands with her existing World Records.
Photo: Tom Parry