George Hood’s Guinness World Record in the Plank Propels Post-Event PR Push

It’s been almost a week since he did it, and I’m still stunned by George Hood’s latest Guinness World Record.

In a blog post just over two weeks ago, I noted Inside Edge PR’s efforts on George’s behalf, as he was about to make his bid to break the record (50 minutes, 11 seconds) for an abdominal plank.

Two days shy of his 54th birthday, George didn’t just do that—he tore it to shreds. Nearly a half-hour beyond the mind-blowing mark, at the 1 hour, 20-minute, 5-second mark, George had stretched his body and mind to the max.

Within a few minutes  sweat raining from his still-quivering body, George did a couple of push-ups.

“Now he’s rubbing it in,” I chuckled to another observer.

Since then, media coverage has swelled from the mostly local variety (before and immediately after the event, such as this piece in the Daily Herald) to national and beyond, aided in no small part by my decision Monday morning to send word of George’s achievement to fellow Medill alumni.

I have rarely sent a PR pitch via that medium, but felt it was more than justified amid the list-serv’s regular stream of requests for web designers, apartment listings and other random miscellany.

The closest I’ve gotten to “holding” a Guinness World Record–standing next to the amazing George Hood, I cradle his plaque with the plank record certificate.

I’m pleased that my decision has been vindicated with placements by fellow Medillians Alice Truong at the Discovery Channel website and Victor Chi at, the new site co-produced by Yahoo! Sports and SportsFanLive.

More coverage is coming, too, including a piece on a national site by another colleague who noticed my first blog post two weeks ago after I linked to it on Facebook.

Now that’s social-media in action.

Encore: George Hood Vies For Guinness World Record–This Time in the Plank

George Hood is at it again.

More than a quarter-century after he first set a Guinness World Record in the realm of self-inflicted physical pain (OK, let’s call it ultra-endurance), he’ll be going after another mark.

This time, instead of jumping rope for more than 13 hours (as in 1986) or riding a spin cycle for more than nine days (as in his increasingly lengthy record-setting efforts the past few years), he will be doing the “plank,” more technically known as the static abdominal hold.

George Hood, during training for his assault on the record in the "plank."

I think my record in the plank is 39 seconds–I much prefer looking up old stats of hard-hitting Chicago Bears safety Doug Plank than subjecting myself to such agony. George says some people can go for a few minutes, bless their abdominally focused hearts.

Of course, since he is so young (not quite 54!), George will aim for more than an hour (not a typo–we’re talking 60 minutes here). The date for the attempt is Saturday, Dec. 3, starting at 9 a.m. at Eggsperience Pancakes and Cafe in Naperville.

You can read the Inside Edge PR news release at TribLocal.

And for prior blog posts I’ve written about George and his amazing exploits with pushing his mind and body to ever-awe-inspiring limits, click here.