Having run all their marathons and ultras, I thought that I was done with Polokwane but then this new race popped up on the calendar and sweating out a 50k seemed like an appropriate way to spend Workers’ Day.
These days I am finding that most of the adventure in running marathons is getting to the start. Point-to-point races always pose logistical challenges and my dire need of beauty sleep (according to my daughters’ forthright opinions, I have a severe deficit in this regard) exacerbates this problem. Continue reading “Seshego Marathon (Signing out from Polokwane)”
[MARATHON #248 / UNIQUE MARATHON #146 / 10 April 2022]
In writing my monthly marathon articles, I normally find that there is high correlation between the responsiveness of race organisers and the overall organisational quality of their race. When I get no response to my enquiries the alarm bells go off.
The organisers of the Durban City Marathon are the Durban City Multi Sport Club. This club seems to have successfully avoided leaving any digital footprint, with a Google search producing zero hits. The club had no entrants at this year’s Two Oceans Marathon and only three finishers at the last Comrades Marathon.
On face value this does not seem like the kind of club that would be given the organisation rights to the flagship marathon in South Africa’s third largest city. However, this is the club that most of the technical officials in KZN Athletics belong to. I am not sure if they have a club motto but if they do, I would not be surprised if it’s, “Do as I say, not as I do.”
[MARATHON #246 / UNIQUE MARATHON #145 / 27 FEBRUARY 2022]
With bad traffic and a lack of local knowledge, I started the Best of the Best Marathon ten minutes late and two poos short of an empty stomach. It wasn’t for lack of trying either. I had allowed more than enough time to get through to King’s Park from our holiday accommodation in Salt Rock (this particular marathon was sold on the pretext using my daughters’ mid-term break as a long weekend at the beach and a chance for my wife to visit her mom and gran in Pinetown).
I had been assured that there was ample parking and, having joined the queue of cars with about 50 minutes to spare, I thought I was safe. Rookie error number one was following a convoy that split to the right towards a large parking garage – only to be informed that this was for Virgin Active members only. The security guard was in no mood for the “I forgot my card at home” excuse so, after 15-minutes of backtracking, I rejoined the slow-moving queue which was now pretty much at a standstill. Continue reading “Best of the Best Marathon (Surviving Shark country)”
[MARATHON #245 / Unique Marathon #144 / 20 February 2022]
Running marathons is hard but organising them is much harder – and post-Covid events have additional challenges like reduced field sizes, staggered starts and a plethora of government regulations to comply with.
However, the Peninsula Marathon takes compliance one step further. Most marathons give you an actual map or road names and local landmarks to ensure that you make it safely to the start but Peninsula ensures that there was no danger of breaching Covid regulations on the maximum size of outdoor gatherings by only providing a suburb name (rather than a specific location within said suburb) as the race’s starting point. Continue reading “Peninsula Marathon (Naval gazing in the Cape)”
[MARATHON #244 / Unique Marathon #143 / 13 February 2022]
With two daughters and one wife, I am totally emasculated at home. Even our cats are female. In fact, the only remaining semblance of masculinity I have left is my surname. I am so thoroughly domesticated that I even put the toilet seat back down when I travel for a marathon by myself.
One of the few vestiges of male privilege that I do have left is being the only member of the household who can walk around topless in decent company. Sadly, even that is becoming difficult. The sight of my stomach unleashes a verbal barrage of sledges that would put Australians with sandpaper in their pockets to shame. Continue reading “Joburg North City Marathon (The new kid on the Block)”