Archive for November 26th, 2008

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Marathon history and one extreme marathon

November 26, 2008

Marathons – a subject close to the hearts of many people – those who have pitted themselves over distances from as short as 13.1 miles, a half marathon, to a full marathon of 26.2 miles and beyond to much greater distances. We give the history and will then present some of the more extreme marathons – just in case you feel so inclined.

History: The marathon  race  commemorates the run of the Athenian soldier Pheidippides who legend tells us ran from a battlefield near Marathon, Greece, to Athens in 490 B.C., a distance of approximately 25 miles, bringing news of a Greek victory over the  Persians. Pheidippides collapsed  and died at the end of his historic run.

However there has long been debate about the accuracy of this story which we will not discuss here – save it to say that when the modern Olympic games were started in 1896 the marathon was the last event of the games and was fittingly won by a Greek named Spiridos ‘Spiros’ Louis in a time of 2:58:50 hours. The distance was not standardised until the 1924 games when atletes ran 26.22 miles, or 42.196 kms.

Extreme marathons: with over 800 marathons run every year there are a number of extreme versions. Most marathons come under the jurisdiction of the Association of International Marathons and Distance Runners. We will over the next few days give some examples of some of the more extreme marathons.

The Addo Elephant Trail runs: not strictly a marathon in the sense of distance as you can run a 100 mile, 50 mile or 25 mile route. The fifth running of this race will be held on Saturday 2nd May 2009. The 100 miler is run through the Addo Elephant Park, about 50 miles from Port Elizabeth, South Africa and winds its way over the mountains into the Sundays River Valley before crossing the escarpment of the Zuurberg Mountains to finish at the Addo Elephant Park main rest camp.You have to complete the race in 30 hours. The 50 miler and 25 miler routes are run in the same location.

The cost of entering the races varies – the 100 miler is 950 rand, the 50 miler is 550 rand and the 25 miler is 350 rand. For further details go to the website www.extrememarathons.com

Below is the schedule and we have included a vdeo from bradke – not of the race but of some of the ‘traffic’ you might meet as you run!

Schedule

Friday, 01 May 2009

From 14h00:  Registration for at the Lapa, Addo Elephant National Park, Main Rest Camp.  Drop off bags to be taken to registration by 17h00 for distribution to the Checkpoint Captains. (Drop bags will not be accepted after 17h00)

Saturday, 02 May 2009

05h30:  Complimentary coffee/tea at the Kirkwood Hotel

06h00:  Start of the 100 Miler, 50Miler and 25Miler in front of the Kirkwood Hotel.

Sunday, 03 May 2009

06h00:  Cut-off of Silver Buckle, 100Miler.

12h00:  Cut-off of Bronze Buckle, 100Miler.  Finish of the 100Miler, 50Miler and 25Miler at Addo Elephant National Park Rest Camp.

14h00:  Prize Giving.

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The drive to impress women with acts of sheer stupidity is universal

November 26, 2008

This comment amused me – the author had been reading our blog on “is this the world’s tallest bungee jump” and in her various comments made this one:

The drive to impress women with acts of sheer stupidity is universal.

The episode I saw? All about land jumping. That’s the ORIGINAL version of bungee jumping. Only it’s done from vines with very little spring. And the men jump from an eight-foot bamboo tower. Their heads actually hit the ground. Total Penis Contest. If someone plucked these guys out of the jungle, dropped them in the middle of a car dealership, and told them they could have whatever make they’d like … they’d totally choose Monster Trucks and Hummers. The winner of THIS particular contest won a handful of grass, which, judging from the looks on everyone’s faces, seemed just as impressive.

If you want to read more please follow the link below:

All the world’s a jungle. Some places just require less clothing <b>…</b>

Good for a chuckle…

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Is Colorado America’s playground state?

November 26, 2008

Yesterday we talked about the many different winter activities that you can do in Colorado but of course it is not only skiing, snowboarding, ice racing, ice climbing and the like that attracts visitors, as well as residents alike to the great outdoors – a wonderful and inspiring playground.

Indeed Colorado has, according to several studies, the lowest obesity rate in the United States, at 18.7% of the population it is the lowest percentage in the nation – but this still equates to nearly one in five people. Mississippi, Tennessee and Alabama score over 30% according to the CDC’s – the Centre for Disease Control & Prevention – 2007 survey – so perhaps you Coloradans do not have too much to worry about – just keep exercising.

And today we want to tell you about a small town where another great all year round activity can be practiced in Colorado – mountain biking. Well in a state that has 53 fourteeners (mountains with a height in excess of 14,000 feet) you would expect the word mountain to appear in front of bike!

In the biking world the northern Coloradan town of Fort Collins is well known and it is a reputation the town’s authorities are proud to protect and promote. It has just received the League of American Bicyclists ‘Gold Medal’ for being a bicycle friendly community.

Cathy Jones, the marketting director of the town’s Convention and Visitors Bureau says ‘ Cycling is king here – perhaps it is the wide open spaces, the record number of sunshine days or the high profile cycling events held here every year plus the fact that Fort Collins has invested so much into what makes cycling so popular – greenways and bike lanes – there are 90 miles of trails and paths in Poudre Canyon and more than 200 miles of bike paths in and around the city, and a new mountain bike park in Lory State Park to the west of the city’.

Annual cycling events include the Fort Collins Cycling Festival usually held in June, the New Belgian Brewery ‘Tour de Fat’ held in September and the USA Cycling Collegiate National Championships held in the spring.

And for the casual biker who doesn’t want to invest a fortune for their one bike ride of the year you can bob down to the Fort Collins Bike Library and ‘borrow’ anything from a cruiser to a mountain bike free of charge for up to 72 hours.

For more information visit www.ftcollins.com or call the Fort Collins Convention and Visitors Bureau on  1-800-274-3678

Take a look at what you can expect at Fort Collins in this video from bikeskidino – sure looks like a playground!