Framework

Capturing the world through photography, video and multimedia

With minimal furniture inside his house, Kelly Gneiting uses the open space to complete his "shiko" sumo exercise.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Mariah Tauger / Los Angeles Times

On the Navajo reservation of Fort Defiance, Ariz., Kelly Gneiting embarks on an eight-mile run as he continues to train for the 2011 Los Angeles Marathon. The 2008 LA Marathon was his first race of any kind. With almost no training, he made it through the course -- stopping, sitting, walking for the final half. Still, he finished, about half a day after the first runners were done.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Mariah Tauger / Los Angeles Times

Gneiting does his daily sumo workout. In 2005, three years after his first match, he won a U.S. Sumo Federation national title. He repeated in 2006 and again in 2007.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Mariah Tauger / Los Angeles Times

Exhaustion kicks in. Kelly Gneiting has trained for the marathon with a zeal he didn’t have before, taking only Sundays off.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Mariah Tauger / Los Angeles Times

Kelly Gneiting at home.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Mariah Tauger / Los Angeles Times

Gneiting embarks on a run on the Arizona reservation where he lives. He works as a statistician at the Fort Defiance Indian Hospital.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Mariah Tauger / Los Angeles Times

Gneiting says with his marathon goal, he wants his wife and kids to be proud, and he wants his kids to see that being big doesn’t mean dreams have to die.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Mariah Tauger / Los Angeles Times

Gneiting walks home after a workout through the dimly lighted streets of his neighborhood.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Mariah Tauger / Los Angeles Times

Gneiting in his bedroom. He says he hopes his marathon efforts provide inspiration to the world but, more so, to those closest to him, his family.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Mariah Tauger / Los Angeles Times

The sound of the howling wind echos within the empty room as Kelly Gneiting prepares for the work day. With his paycheck going directly back to his family in Idaho, Gneiting puts little emphasis on material things.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Mariah Tauger / Los Angeles Times

More galleries on Framework

return to gallery

400-pound marathoner

Pictures in the News | July 21, 2015

Tuesday's Pictures in the News begins in Africa, where people gather around the body of a man shot dead in Burundi. Burundians voted amid gunfire and grenade blasts, with...   View Post»

   

400-pound marathoner

Pictures in the News | June 24, 2015

In Wednesday's Pictures in the News, relatives of 19-year-old shooting victim Tavin Price hold a news conference at which Los Angeles police detectives announced multiple...   View Post»

   

400-pound marathoner

Pictures in the News | May 29, 2015

Friday's Pictures in the News begins in Texas, where the death toll from almost a week of fierce rain that has flooded many parts of the state continued to rise on Friday as...   View Post»

   

400-pound marathoner

reFramed: In conversation with David Magnusson

“reFramed” is a feature showcasing fine art photography and vision-forward photojournalism. It is curated by Los Angeles Times staff photographer Barbara Davidson. Follow...   View Post»

   

Skid row wedding

They met on skid row, returned for their wedding

Family, friends and skid row residents gathered in San Julian Park in downtown Los...
  View Post»

   

400-pound marathoner

Pictures in the News | Nov. 21, 2013

In Thursday's Pictures in the News, investigators on the eastbound 210 Freeway in Pasadena work the scene of an overnight crash involving three big rigs and several vehicles,...   View Post»

   

400-pound marathoner

The Week in Pictures | Oct. 29-Nov. 4, 2012

Each week we bring you the very best in visual journalism. Hurricane turned super-storm Sandy decimated the East Coast, shutting down mass transit systems, schools and...   View Post»

   

400-pound marathoner

Pictures in the News | Dec. 19, 2011

In today's Pictures in the News, the poeple of North Korea react to the death of their leader, Kim Jong Il. Kim's death at 69 was announced by state television from the capital,...   View Post»

   

400-pound marathoner

Pictures in the News | June 22, 2011

It's Wow Fest on Skid Row in downtown Los Angeles, an annual event that attracts thousands of people drawn by free lunches, haircuts, makeovers, hygiene kits and family...   View Post»

   

400-pound marathoner

Pictures in the News | March 15, 2011

It's the colors of the Hindu festival Holi that start off our Pictures in the News. Meanwhile, in Jerusalem, Israelis try to bring awareness to the plight of a kidnapped...   View Post»

400-pound marathoner

With a trace of humor and no small amount of pride, Kelly Gneiting, 40, calls himself the Fat Man. He weighs 405 pounds. Even so, he is an athlete, and he is hardly shy about saying how good he is. “I honestly think I’m one of the best athletes in the world,” he says. The Fat Man is a three-time national champion sumo wrestler. Now he has willed himself into something far more unlikely: He has become a long-distance runner. On March 20, at the 26th Los Angeles Marathon, he wants to set a new Guinness World Record.

Read Kurt Streeter’s story

9 Comments

  1. March 18, 2011, 11:07 am

    Congratulations to you and your show of determination. This is very inspiring! And should you get any body-snark comments, pay them no heed. It takes a great deal of courage to do what you are doing, more than some folks will ever know. Kudos to you and hang in there. You have people cheering you on!

    By: muyfifi
  2. March 21, 2011, 12:28 pm

    Congratulations!! You truly are an inspiration to all over sized people. You set out to accomplish a goal that for some would have defeated them in the end. But with your strong will and determination you have truly succeeded. Congrats again and good luck with your future goals!!!

    By: vonevan@yahoo.com
  3. March 21, 2011, 1:34 pm

    Way to go Kelly…..I am proud of you!!!!

    By: fieta@ida.net
  4. March 21, 2011, 2:12 pm

    WELL DONE!
    CONTINUED SUCCESS.

    By: OPERATOR147
  5. March 21, 2011, 7:49 pm

    Congratulations!!! What you did setting a goal and becoming a long distance runner has set inspiration for other over size individuals to go out for their goals and not be afraid to accomplish that goal set. Good job!!!!!

    By: dieselken24@yaho.com
  6. March 22, 2011, 7:30 am

    Wow! Those are beautiful pictures! Congratulations, Kelly!

    By: Zen
  7. March 25, 2011, 12:00 pm

    26 miles in 10 hours means you completed a 26 mile walk….averaging ~2.6 miles an hour.

    This guy is not an athlete. He is type II obese.

    By: clarish@iastate.edu
  8. March 25, 2011, 10:24 pm

    And what are the people who finished more than 2 hours after him? Marathons are about endurance. Anyone capable of sticking one out deserves to be congratulated.

    Also, "type II obese"? Seriously? Do you have any concept of health or fitness?

    By: Mae
  9. March 29, 2011, 12:37 am

    He means sumo-wrestling, not running

    By: emm

Add a comment or a question.

If you are under 13 years of age you may read this message board, but you may not participate. Here are the full legal terms you agree to by using this comment form.

Comments are moderated, and will not appear until they've been approved.

Required

Required, will not be published