Marathon season is upon us with 40,000 people crossing the line at the London Marathon last weekend. Coconut Water is a fantastic drink for runners as it is a great source of electrolytes, but let’s not stop there, here are some fun and interesting marathon facts.
According to legend, the Greek messenger Pheidippides had to run from the battlefield in Marathon all the way to Athens to announce the defeat of the Persians. The distance run was 25 miles and according to legend as soon as he had delivered the message Pheidippides died of exhaustion. The marathon was named in honour of this legend.
The 1908 Olympics were held in London and it was decided to set the course to run from Windsor Castle all the way to the Royal Box that was located at White City Stadium. This meant extending the course slightly to the current 26.2 miles, and in order to keep the records straight and make it easier for competitors to train the distance of 26.2 miles this was standardized in 1921.
In 2000, 30-year-old Kenyan Simon Biwattt was the pacemaker in the Berlin Marathon. But instead of dropping out at 28k Simon Biwott continued setting the pace and went on to win the marathon, running a world-class time of 2:07:42.
A runner named Aston Martin took part in the London Marathon while dressed as an Aston Martin! The 24-year-old had hoped to break the world record for running the marathon dressed as a car. He missed out by just four minutes after finishing in a time of four hours and 59 minutes.
In 1967 Kathy Switzer became the first woman to run the Boston Marathon as a numbered entrant. During her run, a race official attempted to stop her and grab her official bib; however, he was shoved to the ground by Switzer’s boyfriend, and she completed the race. It was not until 1972 that women were allowed to run the Boston Marathon officially.
Up until 1990, the Snickers chocolate bar was known as a Marathon in the UK. When Mars announced the change to bring the brand in line with the rest of the World, there was outrage. (Most people are fine with it now!)
Just over 40,000 people lined up at the start line for the 2019 London Marathon, but did you know that 414,168 people entered the ballot for a place, with entries being reserved for charity and “good for age” entrants, that’s a lot of disappointed people!
The 2019 London Marathon may be best remembered by Big Ben or rather a runner dressed as Big Ben (or the Victoria tower to be premise – Big Ben is the bell!) Lukas Bates finished in a respectable time of 3 hours and 54 minutes, which would have been quicker had he not been scuppered by the finish.
Running a marathon burns an average of 2600 calories or roughly 1.85 coconuts!