A chain-smoking runner has completed a marathon in three hours and 28 minutes, all while dragging his way through a pack of cigarettes.

Uncle Chen, from Guangzhou, became a national celebrity on the Chinese social network Weibo after photos of him smokinhg while running the Xin’anjiang Marathon near Shanghai were uploaded after the event on November 6.

The cigarette-loving athlete finished in remarkable position, placing 574th out of more than 1,500 competitors.

Fans were quick to point out that it’s not the first time Chen has completed a marathon in his signature style.

Many dredged up pictures of him smoking while running the 2018 Guangzhou Marathon, as well as the 2019 Xiamen Marathon, , finishing the formerace in 3hrs 36mins and the latter in 3hrs 32mins.

Uncle Chen only smokes when he runs, according to the Hong Kong Standard.

His unusual habit is said to have earned him the nickname ‘smoking brother’ in Chinese running circles, local media reports.

While Chen delighted thousands on social media, some wondered if smoking during a marathon would constitute a doping violation.

Others were unimpressed, arguing that smoking should be banned from marathons, and that they felt sorry for his fellow runners.

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