It’s never too early to start planning for some of the spring’s top events, especially when it’s the Great Wall Marathon which takes place in China on May 21st. This willbe the 12th edition of the race, which was first launched back in 2000.
The race is just as the title suggests – part of the course is run on the steps and slopes of the Great Wall of China, which is the biggest man-made edifice on the planet. It takes about an hour longer to run than most marathons. However, nobody really seems to be too concerned about the time.
The event also features a half marathon along with 5K and 10K runs. Entering the race will allow you to see some of the most interesting scenery in all of China as it takes place in Tianjin Province, which is east of Beijing.
It’s not an easy course, but it’s not a marathon just for elite runners either. It will take a lot of willpower and training to conquer the Great Wall, but don’t be scared of it, just make sure you’re well prepared. The marathon is basically divided into two parts physically.
The first part is about nine kilometers and takes runners up to the Great Wall, across it and then down. This section is made up of thousands of steps. It’s a good idea to run slowly up the mountain and down it and to walk when you’re passing the Wall’s steepest parts. The full marathoners run this section twice and the half marathoners do it just once.
The second part of the course takes runners through rice fields and picturesque villages and is run on flat roads. There’s a drink station about every 5 kilometers with bottled water, bananas, and electrolyte drinks. The marathon will be supervised by specialized doctors. Runners who are well prepared usually finish the race in 5 of 6 hours.