In the first installment, we established that smaller is better when it comes to estimation and sizing. We used Camille Herron (holder of nine ultra marathons distance world records) to illustrate that as volume increases velocity, confidence and predictability decrease. Below is a table with her personal bests (several of which are world records).
Risk enters the race
One aspect that most people forget about when sizing is risk – and an important factor here is that as size increases, risk increases exponentially. Anyone, regardless of their current state of fitness, can start a one kilometre race highly confident that they will make it to the finish line within a reasonably small variance of their time estimation.
[Marathon #208 / Unique Marathon #118 / 2 March 2019]
One of my wild running ideas is to pick the best and most beautiful small-town marathons from all around the South Africa and create a ‘Hidden Gems’ series – the objective being to add a finish at each one to your lifetime marathon running CV. It’s still very much in the formulative stage but I would ensure that there is at least one race per province.
There are so many great small-town marathons scattered all over our beautiful country that whittling the list down to a manageable size, say a dozen, is going to be a challenge. However, I expected a bigger challenge to be finding a Free State marathon that meets my stringent selection criteria. Although there are many great Free State runs, ‘beautiful’ is not adjective one readily associates with their routes.
Nevertheless, as an optimist by nature, I held out hope that a hidden gem could still be unearthed in the Free State. Many marathons ago, I got chatting to some runners from Bethlehem (if memory serves me correctly it was one wise man and two wise women) who told me of a neighbouring town called Clarens and a marathon called Surrender Hill. Continue reading “Surrender Hill Marathon (Overdosing on Maluti Muti)”