Doctors told Tatyana McFadden earlier this year that part of her recovery from blood clots should include exercise.
Her response: “Why not do a couple more marathons?”
McFadden won her seventh straight women’s wheelchair race and eighth overall at the Chicago Marathon on Sunday, breaking her own course record in 1 hour, 39 minutes, 15 seconds.
She set the previous record of 1:41:10 in 2015. A group of racers was on a world-record pace before trailing off.
The victory this year was special for McFadden after missing the London Marathon and finishing fourth at Boston. She had been undefeated since 2013.
“It’s been a journey,” she said. “It was kind of scary coming back. How hard can I push myself in training? Can I be at the top and push the same speeds as last year?”
McFadden, who trains at the University of Illinois, was able to use her climbing skills to pull ahead on the final incline to edge Amanda McGrory (1:39:15) and Manuela Schar(1:39:17).
“It’s amazing to be back out there,” McFadden said.