There are not many competitions that have remained unchanged since ancient times. The contest “Who is faster?” has been held since the dawn of civilization. In this article, you will learn a little from the history of running and some of the most famous runners of all time. Nowadays, sports betting at is very popular. People cheer for their favorites and sincerely rejoice in victories and suffer losses.

As we know from history, the classic marathon was held in honor of the famous warrior of Ancient Greece – Filippidis, who ran from the scene of the battle of Marathon about 26 miles.  He ran to Athens with one goal – to deliver an important message that the Greeks had first defeated the Persians in battle. The story of this warrior ended tragically and heroically at the same time – after running the entire distance without stopping, he delivered the news, fell and died.

Interesting facts about marathons

Despite the long history of the distance, the distance of 26.22 miles or 42 km 195 m was officially stated only at the Summer Olympics in 1908 in London. As for the competition, the marathon had been earlier considered just a long race, and the distances were completely different and, nevertheless, this race was the most extreme.

Today the most dangerous and challenging world race is the Barkley marathon. The 100-mile track runs mostly through the dense forests of Tennessee. The distance runs along the path of the fugitive-killer of M. L. King. An interesting fact is that after the start of the race for such a long distance, there is a special roomy bus going along the distance and gathering all those who have left the distance.

Famous long-distance runners

As for the famous long-distance runners, there are not so many of them today.

For example, Sunita Williams, an astronaut, ran a full marathon distance in space. She ran to the ISS. At the same time, her sister was running this distance on earth; she who took part in the infamous Boston marathon.

Sister Madonna Bader passed 325 “triathlon.” She is officially the oldest participant of the traditional marathon distance (she is 82 years old), who passed the distance “Ironman” from the beginning to the end.

Fauja Singh from Britain, who turned 105 years old, was listed in the Guinness Book of records in 2011. He is the oldest person who overcame the marathon at the age of 100. It is unbelievable but true: this year he participated in another marathon. 

Another famous runner is Cliff Young. In 1983, when he was 61 years old, he became the champion of the famous so-called Australian race, which is the limit of the human body test of endurance. These competitions were held in the area between Sydney and Melbourne in Australia. Cliff managed to surpass the ancient Greek – he ran 544 miles without a stop, sleep and rest.

No less impressive result was achieved by Sir Ranulf Fiennes, an adventurer from Britain. Fiennes ran 7 marathons in a row every day all week on all 7 continents of the planet. This fact does not cause much admiration until remember that one of the continents is Antarctica, which is not so easy to walk. Also, the Englishman has experienced a heart attack a few months before the start.

However, one of the most persistent runners is Belgian Stefan Engels. He managed to run exactly 365 marathons for 365 days, considering it in some way his work. And this is despite the fact that he was diagnosed with asthma as a child and was prescribed to avoid any physical activity.

John Dunbar was in the lead of the whole race at the Ironman competition, but when the team was suddenly run out of drinking water, his assistants did not come up with anything better than to pour him some beer. John began to collide with cars, stumble, but despite this, he was the second.

Terry Fox, a 21-year-old Canadian who lost one leg because of a tumor, decided to run the “marathon of hope” across the country at all costs. The goal of the race is to raise public awareness about cancer, raise money for research in oncology.

The most “toxic” marathon was the race at the 1904 Olympics. The winner of the marathon just drove a car more than half of the marathon distance. The athlete, who won the second place, was moved through the finish line after a shot of rat poison. The third place was achieved by the athlete, who took a nap in the middle of the distance in order to regain strength.