Archive for the ‘marathon’ Category

Boston Globe has a good article on how various body parts work during a marathon and how the marathon affects them.


I was flipping through the pages of Guinness world record when I came across an entry of the world highest marathon, the good guys at Guinness have listed it as Everest Marathon.

According to Everest marathon official site  the marathon is a tribute to Tenzing Norgay Sharper and Sir. Edmund Hillary, for those of you who dont know who the hell are these two, they are the first souls to climb Mt. Everest.

For sometime I have fooling with an idea of running a mountain marathon but after reading about Everest Marathon I realised Mountain running is not a fun ride up and down against a magnificient mountain landscape.

Need more than road marathon running experience

Making it to the start lining, let alone running the everest marathon, is a challenge. All runners are expected to be in Nepal three weeks prior to the start for doctor supervised acclimitisation. Last year 80% of the hopeful runners suffered diarrhoea,  altitude sckness, deep vein thrombossis, reduced lung capacity or chest infections. Remember, the marathon had not even started!

Horrible weather

Although the course of everest marathon is basically down hill there are two steep uphill sections. The lucky runners who make it to the starting line start at everest base camp, Nepal, 5356m and finish at Sherpa Town 3,446m. The runners endure temperatures veering between minus 20C (minus 4F) and 20C (68F).

At a normal marathon we find water points at every three miles but at everest runners find a doctor who checks for  effects of altitude sickness.

Doping effect.

Despite the hazard the everest marathon is popular with serious runners as it is known running at high altitude boosts the body levels of red blood cells. Experts call this “doping the body naturally”

Thinking of doping your body without using illegal drugs? Visit official site to register for the next everest marathon.




Haile Gebrselassie showed us he is human after all after an error costed him a world record at 2008 Dubai Marathon. Haile Gebrselassie ran the second fastest marathon in history, 2.04.53, to win the Standard Chartered Dubai Marathon yesterday.

Just last week I joked on this blog that Mike Huckabee, a dedicated marathon runner, after winning Iowa primary he had broken the first rule of marathon running  “dont start too fast or you will burn out.” Haile Gebrselassie did the opposite of that when he started the Dubai marathon too fast and it cost him a world record and the $1 MILLION jack pot for breaking the world record.

Running pace was under 2.03

According to running times website who did the stats for those like me who werent good in maths in school “At 10k, Haile’s time was 28.39,  45 seconds faster than Berlin pace, and at halfway in 61.27, that advantage had stretched to 61sec, posting a potential finishing time of well under 2.03. Since Gebreselassie himself had suggested that 2.03 was his limit, he had in effect predicted his own demise.”

Gerbrselassie was the fast to admit that the start was too fast, “I wanted to do 62 minutes for halfway, and I paid the price in the final stages, but I’m happy to run this time. You know, everything needs to be perfect, and today, I missed one little thing”.

In the end the 34 year old Ethiopian was 27 seconds shy of his record. His effort at Dubai marathon won him the biggest prize in marathon history, $250,000.

Tiberias marathon in Israel is the lowest marathon in the world. The marathon course in some stretches descends to 200 metres below sea level. See map 

High altitude and and sea level have one thing in common, both lack sufficient oxygen.

This fact confirms why a Kenyan runner, Leornard Mucheru Won last weeks Tiberias Marathon in a time of 2 hours 10 minutes and 30 seconds.

While Mucheru trains in Kenya at High altitude where there isnt much oxygen in the atmosphere, at Tiberias Marathon the vapour in the atmosphere ensured lack of sufficient oxygen. It was busines as usual for the Kenyan plus the next four finishers, who unsurprisingly were Kenyan runners.

The course of Tiberias Marathon follows the shore line of the Sea of Galilee.

From the look things , this is not your average marathon its different, one, the unusual weather, second, the scroll bar on the official Tiberias marathon website is on the right side. Is it a Hebrew thing?


Mike Huckabee Marathon Running

Posted: January 6, 2008 in marathon

Its good to see that one of our fellow running comrade is running for the white house. Mike Huckabee, one of the leading Republican Candidate, has ran in several marathons: the 2005 Marine Corps Marathon, 2006 Little Rock Marathon and the 2006 New York Marathon.

Mike is now running the biggest marathon of his life – the race to be President of USA. To get there he will have first to win the Republican nomination. When he won the Iowa primary, the first primary, he forgot the number one rule of marathon running, DONT START TOO FIRST! I hope he doesnt burn out!

Huckabee Personal Best running time

At the 2006 Little Rock Marathon he crossed the finish line in a time of 4 hrs 38 Minutes. Most coaches agree that the best way to get the best out of your athletes is to put them under competition. At Little Rock Marathon Mike was not only running to better his time but he was being challenged by Iowa Governor Tom Vilsack. Huckabee defeated Vilsack hands down by 50 minutes.

At the finish line Mike was over the moon, “Honestly, running a marathon was one of the greatest days of my life. It ranks up there with the birth of my children,” Huckabee said. “Crossing that finish line is truly one of the most incredible moments I think a human being can have.”

Fight for Dear Life
At one time Huckabee, a self declared “Foodaholic”, weighed nearly 300 pounds and said he could barely run a block. In 2003 doctors diagnosed Mike with diabetes, he was warned he could not live more than 10 years unless he reduced weight. This was the Eureka moment that set the then Governor in a quest to better health.

Mike has even written a book chronicling his dieting and exercise, “Quit Digging Your Grave With a Knife and a Fork.”

I have moved the article to my new blog you can read it there

Warmly Constantine

Some of the most popular posts on this blog have been about Lance Armstrong adventure in marathon, his first marathon at New York marathon where he finished 2 hrs 59 min, seconds, a minute below his three hours target and his 2007 New York marathon where he incredibly slashed 13 minutes to finish in 2 hrs 46 mins. Is this a prelude to to being the best runner in the planet like he dominated cycling, winning seven tour de france?

Old is gold

At 35 years, you might think he is too old to compete with the likes of Robert Cheruiyot, World Marathon Majors Winner and Martin Lel, winner of 2007 New York and London Marathons, but keep in mind Haile Gebresellasie is 35 and he declared his intention to run the marathon at 2012 London Olympics.

A research published by Journal of Applied Physiology indicates Lance is no ordinary runner and I feel in my personal quest to beat his time I might be forced to try and run under 2 hrs 20 mins sooner or later. 

Unsual Lungs, heart and lactic acid production

Big, big heart advantage

His heart is 30% larger than average; however, an enlarged heart is a common trait for many other athletes. His heart can beat over 200 times a minute and thus pump an extraordinarily large volume of blood and oxygen to his legs.

Big Oxygen Intake

His VO2 max—a measure of the maximum amount of oxygen your lungs can take in. Lance has a VO2 max of 83.8 mL/kg/min — much higher than the average person (40-50)

Low Lactic Production

When people reach exhaustion, their muscles build up Lactic acid, which causes the muscles to stop contracting. But Armstrong’s muscles produce about half as much acid as the average person’s muscles do when they get fatigued. This allows him to recover much faster than other people.

In addition to his “good genes” Lance got to the top due to, years of incredible training, competitive experience, and obsessive drive to achieve and persevere.

Looking at his marathon performance, its clear the physical advantage is there and he might as well have brought his obsessive drive to running.

Do you think, with more experience this superhuman will run a marathon in under 2 hrs 20 minutes?