You probably don’t know this about me, but I’m terrified of falling on ice. I am seriously ice-phobic. You can only imagine how I shivered (literally) when I read this article written by Megan Hetzel on the RunnersWorld website entitled, What it Feels Like to Run a Marathon on an Ice Road about Canadian runners who ran marathon on ice to raise money for charity.
The runners, Steve Thomas and Megan Rodel were accompanied by a third person on a bicycle and a support vehicle. They ran a marathon distance on an ice road, formed atop 50-inch-thick frozen lake water in Canada’s Northwest Territories. According to the article, the temperature reached minus 20 degrees and there were serious wind gusts, but at least the course was flat! The two finished the distance in an icy 4:45! Here’s a photo:
The article further stated:
“It’s literally like running on glass,” he said. “It changes your running style. You go to much shorter steps and become a bit more rigid. It was key to find a bit of snow to get some traction.”
Ski goggles and about 15 pounds worth of layers were necessary to combat the sub-zero temps, Thomas said. Still, a complete change of gear midrun was required.
“My primary layers were frozen to me because of all the sweat,” he said. “I’ve never experienced that sort of thing before.”
Thomas conceded that a lack of cheering spectators at the end that you’d expect at a normal marathon made the final miles even harder.
“It was just a case of really digging in deep and concentrating on the brake lights on the back of the truck,” Thomas said.
So far, Thomas and Rodel have raised nearly $15,00 for the Food First Foundation, a program that supports proper nutrition in isolated communities in the Northwest Territories where food supplies are limited. How cool (pun intended) is that?