Fact 1: The Marathon originates from the ancient Greek legend of Pheidippides who was a messenger from the Battle of Marathon in 490BC. It is said he ran 25 miles to Athens from the battlefield to proclaim Greek victory over the Persians and on his arrival called out, “Rejoice, we are victorious,” before he collapsed and died.
Fact 2: Marathons were around 25 miles long until the 1908 London Olympic games when the route that was originally intended to be 26 miles, with a start at Windsor Castle and the finish at White City Stadium was revised to include a planned stadium lap finishing in front or the Royal Box, for this to possible some logistical changes were made that brought the total distance up to 26.2 miles that has remained the standard length.
Fact 3: The record for the most marathons run consecutively is 365. Belgian runner Stefann Engels aka “Marathon Man” ran a marathon every day in 2010.
Fact 4: From the beginning of training to completing the marathon race, a recreational runner will have on average run a total of 880 miles. That is roughly the distance of Land’s End to John O’ Groats.
A ten stone woman running ten minute miles will burn 2,777 calories running a marathon.
Fact 6 :Kenyan runner Patrick Makau Musyoki holds the current world record marathon time with a completed time of 2:03:38 set in the 2011 Berlin Marathon.
Fact 7: British runner Paula Radcliffe holds the women’s record for fastest marathon which she set at the 2003 London Marathon with a time of 2:15:25.
Fact 8: Charity fundraiser Lloyd Scott holds the record for the slowest London marathon time, he ran the race wearing a 110lb deep-sea diving suit and it took him five days and eight hours to complete the course. He later completed the race crawling in a ‘Brian the snail’ costume and completed the race in 26 days.
Fact 9: Budhia Singh is the world’s youngest marathon runner who was trained to run marathons from the age of three. He is reported to have ran in 48 marathons by the age of four. Budhia was born in the slums of India and was sold to an orphanage director who soon recognised Budhia’s talent for long distance running and began to train him. After making headlines around the world state authorities banned Budhia from long distance running on humanitarian grounds in 2006.
Fact 10: Fauja Singh became the oldest person and the first centenarian to complete a marathon at the 2011 Toronto Marathon. He completing the run in eight hours, eleven minutes and five seconds.
Are you running the marathon this year? Or do you know someone who is? Even if you’re just heading out to cheer people on you can get involved with Discovery this marathon day on twitter using the hashtag #myadventure [linked]. Tweet us your adventure this Sunday and good luck out there!
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