Walt Stack

This is the first ever “Just Do It” ad that Nike produced.

It features a guy named Walt Stack.

Yesterday, I used a picture in the blog of a ripped old dude.

I knew that it wasn’t Walt Stack….but it jogged my memory a little, and helped me remember what an amazing story Walt’s was.

Here’s a guy who didn’t start running until he was 57….and then didn’t stop until shortly before his death at 87.

His consistent morning routine….he started at 2 AM….was to get up, ride his old bike 7 miles to the Golden Gate Bridge, then run across to Sausalito and back….a 17 mile run….then swim a mile in the waters of the San Francisco Bay.




Every single day.

Every day of his life.

If you think that it’s hard to read something like that….just imagine doing it and being that consistent.

He holds the record for the slowest Ironman Triathlon finish in Hawaii….26 + hours….riding the 112 mile biking portion of the race on his single speed basketed granny bike…and stopping to eat a full waffle breakfast before completing the final running stage the next morning.

The race organizers established cut off times after that.

His motto was “Start slow…and then taper off”.

Apparently, he was also an enthusiastic drinker…and would sometimes carry a six-pack with him on some of his marathons….finishing the beer well before the end of the race.

You probably shouldn’t attempt to emulate that part of his story.


This guy was a legend and an inspiration in the San Francisco running community.

Here’s an excellent tribute that I found on the internet that must have been written/compiled shortly after Walt’s passing.

The picture at left is from that tribute.

Every day.

Every day.

E…ver….y day.

Imagine that.

Walt Stack….what a dude.

About Peter Rorvig

I'm a non-practicing artist, a mailman, a husband, a father...not listed in order of importance. I believe that things can always get better....and that things are usually better than we think.


Walt Stack — 2 Comments

  1. Everyday. Stack. Never missed a workout. I cam across you blog post and enjoyed it very much. Stack would have been proud to see it, I’m sure.

    Thought you might like to know this. Stack’s gym, or club as you’d have it, was the Dolphin Swim and Rowing Club, down at the end of Fisherman’s Wharf at Aquatic Park in San Fran. That’s where Stack did his swimming, most of his running and daily biking from mid fifties until his death in 1995.

    There is a sign in that club, embossed in wood and varnish that reads “Renew Thyself Completely Each Day. Do It Again, & Again, & Forever Again.” Fitting for the man Stack was, and all of the others from that club who had come before, and after him. Sail on! Mike Walker

    • “Forever Again”….wow. Many thanks for your comment, Mike. Walt’s consistency….and enjoyment of the consistency….is pretty inspirational. Thanks for some more insight into where he trained….and thanks for the saying on the plaque. That’s one worth repeating….again….and again…and forever….again. All the best to you! Peter