Can the Stoltman Brothers Run a 5K?

Celebrated for its cardiovascular and endurance benefits, running is now being embraced by even elite strongman athletes as a valuable addition to their training regimens. (1)

The three-time, reigning World’s Strongest Man (WSM) Tom Stoltman and the reigning two-time Europe’s Strongest Man (ESM) Luke Stoltman tested their limits unexpectedly — by running a 5K. Check out the video below:

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The Stoltman brothers prioritize cardiovascular health and conditioning during the 2024 season by adding running to their training regime. 

Cardiovascular conditioning enhances heart, lungs, and blood vessel efficiency through sustained exercise (2). Luke explained that the primary focus is elevating heart rates during training and monitoring their return to normal.

Tom, who tips the scales at 185 kilograms (408 pounds), confessed to initial reservations about their running abilities, wondering if they could even manage a 1K or 2K run. 

However, Tom prepped by running outdoors at 7 a.m. every day before strength training.

Running is a challenge like cold plunging. If I do it and get past it, the rest of the day is easy.

Optimal running performance demands maintaining rhythm and proper breathing. Tom’s combination of cardio and strength has been crucial for his success as a competitive strongman. The Strongman brothers joined a local running club to test their fitness levels and assess their ability to run a 5K.

The 5K Race

The Stoltman brothers struggled to keep pace and quickly fell behind the pack on race day. Tom’s knee pain forced him to switch from running to walking, further widening the gap.

Despite the challenges, the Stoltman brothers completed the 5K and were cheered on by other runners as they crossed the finish line.

I’m the heaviest man ever to complete a 5K.

“It was surprising to see that we can run a 5K,” Luke said. While the Stoltman brothers acknowledge they won’t be breaking any running records, they expressed pride over their accomplishment, especially considering their significant weight disadvantage compared to an average runner.

The Stoltman brothers will next compete at the 2024 Strongest Man on Earth (SMOE) contest, scheduled for Aug. 16-18 in Loveland, CO. The competition boasts a stacked lineup featuring the 2023 WSM Mitchell Hooper, 2020 WSM champion Oleksii Novikov, 2018 WSM Hafthor Björnsson, and former two-time Shaw Classic champion Trey Mitchell.


Cantwell J. D. (1985). Cardiovascular aspects of running. Clinics in sports medicine, 4(4), 627–640.

Hellsten, Y., & Nyberg, M. (2015). Cardiovascular Adaptations to Exercise Training. Comprehensive Physiology, 6(1), 1–32.

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