People Who Kick Buts: Ryan Hall
I have my own unique road that has had many exciting ups and heart-breaking downs, but the one thing I know is that my journey is not over and the best is yet to come.
- Born on October 14, 1982.
- He won the marathon at the 2008 United States Olympic Trials and placed tenth in the Olympic marathon in Beijing. He holds the U.S. record in the half marathon (59:43). With his half marathon record time, he became the first U.S. runner to break the one hour barrier in the event.
- Hall came on to the running scene as a high school junior. He graduated from high school in the same year as Dathan Ritzenhein and Alan Webb, behind whom he finished in the 2000 Foot Locker Cross Country Championships.
- Ryan Hall’s college career at Stanford University started with injuries that held him back from the promise he showed in high school. In 2001, Hall won the Murray Keating Invitational in his college debut and finished 76th at the NCAA Men’s Cross Country Championships.
- The breakout that everybody expected from Hall since high school took place in the 2005 track season. He earned his first ever individual NCAA Championship by winning the 5000 meters in 13:22.32, finishing less than a second ahead of his teammate Ian Dobson in a race where those two runners dominated the race. He graduated from Stanford with a BA in Sociology.
- Hall has been sponsored by Asics since 2005.
- On December 16, 2010, Hall announced that he would be running the 2011 Boston Marathon, marking his third consecutive appearance in the race.
On April 18, 2011, Hall ran the fastest marathon ever by an American, 2:04:58, to finish fourth. Kenya’s Geoffrey Mutai ran 57 seconds under the recognized world record in winning in 2:03:02, and credited Hall with setting – and maintaining – a fast early pace.
However, this was not an American record, since the Boston course is not eligible for records owing to its point-to-point layout and its elevation drop of greater than 1 m/km; a strong net tailwind (15-20 miles/hr) contributed to the runners’ remarkable 2011 times.