Become a Member

Get access to more than 30 brands, premium video, exclusive content, events, mapping, and more.

Already have an account? Sign In

Become a Member

Get access to more than 30 brands, premium video, exclusive content, events, mapping, and more.

Already have an account? Sign In

Brands

News

Emily Sisson Sets a New American Half Marathon Record in Indianapolis

The 30-year-old overtook the American half marathon record set by Sara Hall in January.

Lock Icon

Unlock this article and more benefits with 25% off.

Already have an Outside Account? Sign in

Outside+ Logo

25% Off Outside+.
$4.99/month $3.75/month*

Get the one subscription to fuel all your adventures.


  • Map your next adventure with our premium GPS apps: Gaia GPS Premium and Trailforks Pro.
  • Read unlimited digital content from 15+ brands, including Outside Magazine, Triathlete, Ski, Trail Runner, and VeloNews.
  • Watch 600+ hours of endurance challenges, cycling and skiing action, and travel documentaries.
  • Learn from the pros with expert-led online courses.
Join Outside+

*Outside memberships are billed annually. You may cancel your membership at anytime, but no refunds will be issued for payments already made. Upon cancellation, you will have access to your membership through the end of your paid year. More Details

On Saturday, Emily Sisson walked away from a successful race day in Indianapolis with two stellar feathers in her cap: Winning the USATF Half Marathon Championships—her sixth national title—and setting a new American half marathon record.   

Sisson, 30, ran the race in a blazing 1:07:11, four seconds faster than the previous record of 1:07:15, set by Sara Hall in January in Houston. 

RELATED: In Penn Relays Debut, 16-Year-Old Sophia Gorriaran Smashes High School Record

“Third time is the charm,” wrote Sisson on Instagram. Sisson has attempted to set the record (Molly Huddle’s 1:07:25 at the time) two other times in 2019 and again in 2020. In her December 2020 attempt in Valencia, Spain, she missed the mark by only a second, running it in 1:07:26.

Setting the recently lowered record was Sisson’s goal for Saturday, even after getting COVID at the end of March which was a setback in her training. “It’s been a pretty rough past month of training, so I was really happy with it,” said Sisson in a post-race interview

The weather also posed an issue on the course at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, with strong winds the entire time. Sisson said the speedway felt like a wind tunnel that she couldn’t wait to get out of. That of course didn’t stop her from attacking the record head on. 

“When we chose this race, we said we don’t need perfect conditions. We just need decent conditions,” she said

RELATED: The Women’s Indoor Distance Medley Relay Record Was Just Set By a Star-Studded Team

But despite her COVID setback and the challenging wind on the day, Sisson looked strong throughout the entire race, pulling away early on and maintaining her lead throughout. She ran the first 5K in 15:54, hitting the 10K mark in 31:57, 15K in 47:54, and 20K in 1:03:52. Her 20K split was actually right in line with Hall’s at the Houston Half Marathon. Sisson was able to gain some ground by sprinting all-out in the end to her final 1:07:11. 

Andrea Pomaranski and Allie Kieffer came in behind Sisson to place second and third respectively in 1:13:12 and 1:13:16. 

Sisson’s half marathon record is pending ratification by the USATF Records Committee.

RELATED: What Experts Say About Running After COVID-19