I watched a new documentary-type film last night called Spirit of the Marathon. Yes, I'm a nerd. A running nerd at that. It followed the training and running of 5 runners who were preparing for the Chicago Marathon. Some were elite runners, where I swear they have a negative body fat percentage. Some were first-timers. Some way old. Some young. It was really rad.
Did you know that the marathon wasn't a competitive event until like 1890? And that the distance of 26.2 wasn't the actual distance until the London 1906 (I think it was...) Olympics? The Queen wanted to watch the beginning from the Windsor Castle so they moved the starting line back. Ever since then it has been officially 26.2
AND did you know that women were banned from running anything longer than 200 meters in 1928ish? That isn't even half a mile! They thought it was detrimental for our health. There was even a rumor that if a women ran for too long her uterus might fall out! That made me laugh for at least 5 minutes straight.
Katherine Switzer in 1967 ran in the Boston Marathon. Since she signed her name K.V. Switzer they assumed she was a man. Everyone was quite surprised to find a woman running in the race! One of the race officials even tried to stop her physically, but her boyfriend shoulder-rammed him and they got away. Good thing she was wearing sweatpants to hold in her uterus. Though I guess it is a wonder that no-one's intestines fell out of their bums either.