I hope to run a 3 hour and 30 minute marathon this November at the ING New York City Marathon. Having fewer runners ahead of me, clogging the streets, would likely help me attain that goal and thus, I initially agreed with Mr. Sherman.
After my biased and self-serving initial reaction I applied some thought to the matter and frankly I couldn’t disagree more. The growth in popularity of the marathon is good for almost everybody – from the first time marathoner whose aim is to finish, to the middle of the pack runner right on up the starting chute to the sub-elite and world class athletes like Deena Kastor and Meb Keflezighi.
In general terms, the popularity surge of the marathon has inspired more people to get fit, something that America desperately needs. Six of out ten American adults are overweight. Nearly 20% of children in
This trend also translates into a growth in the Prize Purses for the elite athletes of our sport (the NYC marathon purse is $500,000 this year). And while we’re talking about money I just fail to see how the $660 Million that many “newbies” have raised for Team In Training to fight Leukemia and Lymphoma is a bad thing.
Even if the growing popularity of marathons means I will have to work harder on Marathon Sunday to reach my personal goals, I am glad to run with 37,000 “newbies,” veterans, world class and Olympic athletes. Afterall, it was the the sight of so many running the New York Marathon after 9/11 that inspired me to train for and run my first marathon.
"All human beings should try to learn before they die what they are running from, and to, and why."