Running is a very serious thing, and like all very serious things it is okay to joke about it.
But this is not the place to do so because the following news and trivia are all true, verified and verifiable. And, as always since we inaugurated this weekly column, they provide excellent topics when the conversation languishes at the cocktail hour. To never run out of topics, here are some suggestions!
- The greatest number of heart attacks are concentrated in the last 5 kilometers of the marathon.
- Humans are better than any other animal in terms of running endurance. Except cats, rabbits and kangaroos.
- Drinking water at aid stations in races up to 10k was prohibited up until 1960.
- Until the 1960s, U.S. police stopped people who ran for training.
- The ability to run was developed by humans to hunt and escape from predators as long as 2.6 million years ago.
- Endurance running sharpens your nervous system. That’s right: research has verified that running improves memory and learning ability.
- Runners’ (and non-runners’) bahaviours that other runners hate most during a race are: runners taking selfies, runners listening to loud music on their cell phones, pedestrians not looking where they are walking, and those who are not in the wave where they belong at the start of a race.
- “Shoegasm” is defined as arousal resulting from attraction to running shoes (or shoes in general) that exceeds that to sex.
- The youngest marathoner in history is India’s Budhia Singh. He began training at age 3, and by age 5 he had completed 48 marathons.
- Instead, the oldest marathoner was Baba Fauja Singh who completed the Toronto Waterfront Marathon in 8 hours, 25 minutes and 16 seconds. At 100.
- Thefastest man on earth in a marathon is Eliud Kipchoge, who in 2018 set a world record in Berlin by stopping the clock at 2 hours, 1 minute and 39 seconds.
- The fastest woman on earth is Kenyan Brigid Kosgei, who ran the fastest time of all in 2019 in Chicago in 2 hours, 14 minutes and 4 seconds.
- The slowest marathon runner in the world is the Japanese Shiro Kanakuri who participated in the Stockholm Olympic Marathon in 1912 but fell asleep due to the heat and, in shame, retired. Except to complete it many decades later, setting the record for slowness in 54 years, 8 months, 6 days, 5 hours and 32 minutes.
- The fastest marathon ever run running backwards was completed by a man named Markus in 2017 in Hanover in 3 hours, 42 minutes and 41 seconds.
- The sole of the first Nike soles was created in 1972 using a waffle iron. To be exact, that of co-founder Bill Bowerman’s wife.
- The first sports bras were not created until 1977.
- The 1972 Boston Marathon was the first marathon in the world to admit women.
- And the Boston Marathon is also the oldest in the world: in fact, the first edition was held in 1897.
- The most popular race in the U.S. is the Bay to Breakers, held in San Francisco, is 12 km long and has 100,000 participants.
- The coldest marathon in the world is the – guess what? – North Pole Marathon.
Now what shall we have: spritz or prosecco?