It’s that time of the year again where on a Sunday the nation becomes glued to their TVs cheering runners on. To get into the spirit, here are 10 facts about Britain’s most famous road race.
1. The name ‘Marathon’ originates from the legend of Pheidippides, who in 490BC was said to have run from the battlefield of Marathon to Athens, a distance of 24.8 miles, to announce the victory of the Greeks over the Persians.
2. Today’s race of 26.2 miles dates back to the 1908 London Olympics. It is said that the original distance was extended to enable members of the royal family to watch the start of the race from the East Terrace at Windsor Castle and the end of it from the royal box in the Olympic stadium at White City.
3. The greatest British female marathon runner is Paula Radcliffe. She’s still the world record holder, having run 2hr 15min 25sec at the London Marathon in 2003. She won eight of her first ten marathons. But the two she didn’t win were the Olympic races at Athens and Beijing.
4. Mo Farah was 15 years old when he won the Mini Marathon for the first time. He won it three times in all. He made his marathon debut last year in the main event but could only finish eighth.
5. Kenya is the dominant force of distant running and the East African nation has 18 London Marathon wins to its name. Kenya has won nine out of the last 11 runnings of the men’s elite race
6. Mile 19 on the course takes the thousands of road racers from elite to the rank amateurs past Canary Wharf.
7. The record temperature ever recorded in London for the marathon was 21.7 degrees dating back to 22 April 2007. The coldest temperature ever had been 13 years previously in 1994 at 7.6 degrees.
8. The youngest ever female winner was Malgorzata Sobaska, who was 25 when she won in 1995 in a time of 2:27.53. The youngest male winner was Sammy Wanjiru, the Kenyan just 22 for his 2009 victory. He sadly died two years later after falling from a balcony.
9. You don’t have to run to be part of the Virgin Money London Marathon 2016, you can walk or cheer from the sidelines. Every year, approximately 36,000 people run the 26.2-mile (42.2km) marathon through the streets of London.
10. It kicks off at Greenwich Park and Blackheath, continues through Surrey Quays, Brunel Rd, Tooley St, Canary Wharf, the Tower of London, Embankment, Parliament Square and Birdcage Walk, with a royal finish on The Mall by Buckingham Palace.
Generally, it takes a minimum of two to three weeks for the body to recover from the strain of running 26 miles 385 yards. Return too quickly and you increase your risk of injury. Some experts suggest resting one day for every mile you run in the marathon, thus 26 days of no hard running or racing!
- Soak in a cold water bath for 5 to 10 minutes and consider wearing compression tights. Both can aid in decreasing inflammation in your legs and speed the rate of healing.
- Stretch, roll, and massage. Wait at least two to six hours after the race to stretch and foam roll and at least 24 hours for a massage. This allows your muscles time to replenish fluids and energy lost and recover from the demands of the race. Our deep tissue massage is perfect to aid any sore muscles.
- Each lots of fruits, carbohydrates, and protein. The carbs and protein will help repair the muscle damage while the fruits will give you a boost of vitamin C and antioxidants to help combat free radical damage and boost your immune system.
This year Perfect 10 are delighted to announce that our Directors husband is running the marathon for a charity very close to his heart, The Stroke Association.
If you'd like to donate please click here.
Thank you and good luck Gary!