Lunatics to Run Marathon in Antarctica


This has been a banner weekend for extreme exercise. As the Post puts it, “Ninety-nine maniacal marathoners” (it’s like a Lewis Carroll poem), including several New Yorkers, will travel to Antarctica next month to compete in the Antarctica Marathon. For the privilege of trying to survive 26.2 miles down there, runners pay $8,400.

First, the runners will travel to the southern end of Patagonia, and then embark on “10 days on an aging Russian ship in the treacherous Drake Passage.” Then it’s time to run! Except if you get hypothermia and don’t finish in six hours, you’ll be “hauled out.” By what? By whom?

I wonder what these people wear during the marathon. Do they waddle along in full snow suits? Maybe they’re so tough they just wear their regular Spandex. As their extremities begin to fall off to be eaten later by penguins, they think to themselves , “If you have to ask, you don’t really understand.”


This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on January 9, 2011

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