On Saturday, February 21 and Sunday, February 22, marathoners will attempt 204 laps on the indoor track in the Roman Gingerich Recreation and Fitness Center. This seventh annual certified marathon will be a test of endurance and speed for the benefit of local charities.
“This is a nationally recognized marathon that has built a reputation among marathoners,” Doug Yoder, coach of both cross country and track and field teams, said. “There are runners that come from all over the US to run in our marathons.”
This marathon, a grueling 26.2 miles, is different than the half marathon held by the RecFit earlier this year. While the half marathon was intended to be fitting for anyone’s schedules and to be a community experience between students, faculty and staff, this full marathon is designed specifically for serious marathoners who come from all over the country to participate.
“This marathon is co-sponsored by the cross country and track and field teams,” Yoder said. “The marathons were started as fundraisers to contribute to local charities. In the last 6 years we have contributed over $10,000 to various charities.”
This centeredness on giving back is one draw to the marathon aside from the great opportunity to do a marathon in the middle of winter, when the conditions outside are less than hospitable.
Thirty-five runners can be registered for each day, with the entry fee going directly to charity. Past years have sold out for both races, the participation indicating what a great running opportunity the Maple Leaf Indoor Marathon provides.
While no students are known to be participating this year, a great turnout is expected. The race on Saturday starts at 8 a.m. and Sunday’s starts at 7 a.m. There is a six-hour time limit and support is fully welcome to cheer the runners on throughout the race.