What's New

Posted by martin.parnell |

This is it, the first blog................the plan is to run 250 marathons in 2010. lots done and lots still to do. Bib numbers have arrived (ALL 250 for me!!) and the "Cochrane Foothills Marathon" course measured and certified by Athletics Canada. Tomorrow off to Canmore to talk to Dean Karnazes.

bib number

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Running with Dean

Posted by martin.parnell |

On Sunday, Sue and I got up at 6.00am and after a quick breakfast headed off to Banff. We had spotted in the Banff Film and Book festival booklet that Dean Karnazes, Ultramarathon runner was going to do a trail run and anyone was welcome to join him. We arrived at 7.45am and Dean was chatting with a group of runners. Introductions were made and we headed off on a snowy / icy trail through the woods, lots of roots and some steep up and down sections. We eventualy got to a road and things got a little easier.

I chatted with Dean and he was fully supportive of endevour I was attempting in 2010. I asked him if he'd be willing to join my "Advisory Team" to give me tips along the way and he said yes. He was extremely open and had lots of good ideas; we also talked about running the San Francisco Marathon, in July 2010, as part of the MQ 250 marathons.

Later David (a friend from Cochrane), Sue and I were having coffee and Dean came over, and we had the pleasure of meeting his wife Julie.

Running Group photo at the Banff Centre, Banff, Alberta

Dean Karnazes 2_500

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Remembrance Day Marathon

Posted by martin.parnell |

Today, a group of runners from the Cochrane Red Rock Running and Tri Club ran the 1st annual "Remembrance Day" marathon. The route was on the newly certified Cochrane Foothills Marathon course. The run started at 8.00am and a minute's silence was observed at 11.00am. The group finished the marathon in 5hrs 4 minutes and 24sec.

Running this marathon reminded us of another race, the Comrades marathon. It was the idea of World War I veteran Vic Clapham, to commemorate the South African soldiers killed during that war. Clapham, who had endured a 2,700km route march through sweltering German East Africa, wanted the memorial to be a unique test of the physical endurance of the entrants. The constitution of the race states that one of its primary aims is to "celebrate mankind's spirit over adversity".

The Comrades was run for the first time on 24 May 1921 and with the exception of a break during World War II it has been run every year since. The 2009 event was the 84th race. To date, over 300 000 runners have completed the race.

The Comrades Marathon is the world's oldest and largest ultramarathon. Run over a distance of approximately 90 km (55.9 mi) , the direction of the race alternates each year between the up run starting from Durban and the down run starting from Pietermaritzburg.

African Sky


African sky

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Training Day

Posted by martin.parnell |

If it's Wednesday it must be "Run a Marathon" training day. My friend, Andrew, came over at 8.30am and I  had made arrangements to meet with Kevin Green from CTV. They both arrived at the same time and we headed up to the start of the Cochrane Foothills Marathon course.

The day was crystal clear but the temp was -8C with a bit of a wind. Kevin did a brief interview and then Andrew and I headed off along the 1A towards the mountains. Kevin went ahead of us and took shots along the route. After about an hour Kevin said he had enough footage and he mentioned that the sequence would be shown on Saturday.

Andrew and I chatted as we made the climb to the top of the course. We talked about the cycle trip I had under taken in 2005, from Cario to Cape town and I recounted the beauty of Namibia, wide open desert scapes, with the sun bring out incredible salmon coloured hues in the rocks.

Morning ride in Namibia


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Blowing in the wind

Posted by martin.parnell |

Another Wednesday, another "training marathon" day. Time's ticking along towards January 1st and marathon #1, and as I was having my morning coffee I checked the count-down clock on the Marathon Quest 250 website. It said  36 days 23 hours 15 minutes and 24.172 seconds.

I pointed out to webmaster Jeffrey several day ago that the accuracy on the count down clock was to the 1/1000 of a sec but that Usain Bolt's 100m world record was only measued to 1/100 of a second!!!

Paul came over at 7.45am and we headed up to the intersection of 1A and Horse Creek road, the start of the Cochrane Foothills marathon course. The temperature was -5C and as calm as can be but 5 hours later it had warmed up to +14C and I was running into a howling wind.

Along the way we spotted a number of animals including the fellow below.

Two-Tone the Llama watches the world go by:

Two Tone the Llama

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