From Ironman to Guinness World Records: Glen Shaw's Ketogenic Diet Success

From Ironman to Guinness World Records: Glen Shaw's Ketogenic Diet Success

Updated October 2023


Hold onto your steak knives, folks! Ever heard of a guy who runs marathons with a 60-lb backpack and still has the energy to crack a joke? Meet Glen Shaw, the epitome of what it means to be a keto athlete. This guy’s story is so jaw-dropping, it’s like watching a Rocky movie but with more meat and less drama. Why is it noteworthy? Because Glen is shattering myths and setting records, all while munching on ribeyes and sipping bulletproof coffee. Let’s dig in!

The Man, The Myth, The Keto: Glen Shaw

Born in Zimbabwe, raised in South Africa, and now living in London, Glen Shaw is a globetrotter with a penchant for pushing limits. Working in IT by day and training like a beast by night, Glen’s life is anything but ordinary. He’s not just a runner; he’s an Ironman finisher with eyes set on breaking Guinness world records. And guess what? He’s doing it all fueled by a low-carb, high-fat diet. Talk about breaking the mold!

The Power of Ketosis: Unleashing Athletic Prowess

One of the most mind-blowing benefits Glen experienced from his carnivore lifestyle is enhanced athletic performance. Remember, this is a guy who completed full and half Ironmans. His secret weapon? Ketosis. While his mates are carb-loading, Glen is fat-loading, and the results speak for themselves. He’s not just running; he’s running with a 60-lb backpack and still crushing it. How’s that for a human powerhouse?

Mental Clarity and Recovery: The Unsung Heroes

Another incredible perk Glen enjoys is mental clarity. When you’re attempting to break world records, every ounce of focus counts. The carnivore diet provides that laser-like concentration. Plus, his recovery time is off the charts. He trains 12 days in a two-week segment, including grueling runs with a heavy backpack, and still bounces back. If that’s not superhuman, what is?


Glen Shaw’s life is a testament to the transformative power of the ketogenic diet. From setting athletic records to enjoying unparalleled mental clarity, he’s living proof that you can achieve extraordinary feats on this diet. So, if you’re still on the fence about going full keto, let Glen’s story be your inspiration. Who knows, you might just become the next record-breaking, meat-loving athlete!


Just a quick heads-up! This story is a throwback, and while it offers valuable insights, we can’t confirm if Glen is still on the keto diet or has maintained these benefits. Also, I’m not a doctor, but if I were, I’d probably prescribe more steak!

Interview with Glenn

I live in the backwaters of the countryside in County Durham. Its a great place to run, but judging by the amount of Gregg’s, takeaways and pubs. I am not sure my village is at the forefront of nutritional progression. With my barefoot running and ketogenic diet, I sometimes feel like an ugly duckling, Dr Frankenstein, or Ariel from the Little Mermaid!! Wherein people are just clearly looking at me and thinking, what the hell is he on about? That’s ok though, I actually like being different.

With all that being said, just after a quick look on the web. You will see there are plenty of people thriving on low carb diets, as well as excelling with their exercise goals. This is the inspiration for the new Interview section of my blog. Hope you like it.

Glen Shaw

Twitter @GlennoShaw. Instagram @glenno_shaw.

Please note; you do not have to have a beard and be bald to excel on low carb, but it helps. I wonder if the world would fold in on itself if we ever met???

Who are you ?

I’m a bit of a worldy: born in Zimbabwe, raised in South Africa, now living in London (since 2006), and moving to Australia next year with my fiancé. I work as a level 3 support person for an IT company, which I’ll be sad to say good bye to at the end of this year. We are planning on doing a year of travelling before getting to Oz to settle down in Newcastle (NSW), where all her family and friends live.

What is your exercise background?

I let myself go and really only started getting back into training in 2009. I was never a runner (played rugby in high school), but figured that would be the best way to lose weight. That eventually lead to me completing two half Ironmans (in Exmoor 2013 & 2014) and a full Ironman (in Bolton 2015).

What are your exercise goals for the future?

This year I’m hoping to break the Guinness world record for the fastest marathon carrying 60-lb (27.22kg). I had started to train for it after Ironman and attempted it at the London Marathon this year but got a bit unlucky early in the attempt and finished 45 minutes behind the record. I’ve signed up to the Gloucester City marathon on August 6th to give it one last go.

What is your diet like?

Breakfast is just a bullet proof coffee, 100g of full fat Greek yoghurt and some blueberries. Lunch is a salad (raw spinach, feta cheese, tomato, cucumber, pastrami ham and full fat mayonnaise) then a kiwi fruit and some cashew nuts. Afternoon snack is babel cheese, almond nuts and a banana (then I’m ready for my evening workout). Dinner is whatever my fiancé cooks up, she enjoys cooking and likes the challenge of creating meals without (or as little) carbs as possible.

My weekends are where I’m pushing myself to the limit and at this point I’m still amazed at what’s possible whilst in Ketosis. For example, I’m training to do Challenge Almere on September 9th with my housemate and he has a massive dinner on Friday night, a massive breakfast and takes along sandwiches before we set off for 3 -4 hours of swimming and cycling, and all I’ve had is a normal dinner and a bullet proof coffee.

How do you fuel your backpack runs?

So on Sunday mornings without the bag I just get up and bust out up to 15 miles carrying nothing but a 500ml bottle of electrolytes, anything more than that and I take two bottles with me. But it’s all on a completely empty stomach (i.e. a fasted state).

With the backpack I have to load up, not carb up, but load up on food: Huge dinner, as much breakfast as I can eat and then I take a few nut butters with me which I have at the turnaround. I’ve found I can just about manage 10 miles without eating but once I start running further than 13 miles I need to eat loads (It just feels like my stomach needs food in it to stabilise the bag and I burn through the food really quickly).

Running with the backpack is hell on earth: shoulders and quads just get destroyed every time, and I can really only do one long run with the backpack every other week (it takes me a few days to recover from a long run and I still need to give myself enough time to kind of taper before the next big run with it). So in a two week segment I’m training 12 days but only really doing 3 runs with it (two short and one long) the other days are filled with swimming, cycling and strength work.

The record currently stands at 4h39m09s and I am able to maintain the 10 min/mile pace needed to break it but I need a good race day without any problems so fingers crossed that will happen at Gloucester!

Any advice for me?

I have two bits of advice I’d like to leave with you:

  • Don’t risk long term injury for any event – short term success never outweighs long term burdens.
  • Never ever, under any circumstances shave your beard off (look what happened to Samson), keep your beard game strong.

Photo Credit: Glen Shaw



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