52 Marathons in 52 WeeksJanuary 23, 2012
By Noel Paine
“It takes a long time to become young.” - Pablo Picasso
It is the first month of 2012 and many of us are running off Christmas dinners and a few desserts. Many of us are also planning our spring marathons or goals for the year ahead. One Canadian runner has decided to mark 2012 by running a marathon every week for the entire year.
Sonja Adcock is a slim 52 year-old with a pixy blond haircut from Ottawa. She has not always been a runner and says she tried running in the 1980s, didn’t enjoy it and only caught the bug more than ten years later. In 1994, persuaded by a few friends and thinking it would be a good way to get back into shape after a couple of kids, she gave running a second chance. Running took hold and she has never looked back.
Since 1994 Sonja has run over 20 marathons, completed four ultra marathons, finished four Ironmans and participated in a number of endurance cycling events. On her blog Sonja says, “Running truly is magical. When I step outside to begin my run and take that first breath of air, I feel as though all my cares start floating away and I feel truly blessed to be able to run.”
When Sonja turned 50 she decided to run 50km to mark the day. To entice friends to come and join her, she decided to run 10 loops of 5K. At the same time, she wanted to give something back to the community so she decided to raise money for the Snowsuit Fund, a local charity that provides underprivileged children with warm clothing for our cold winters.
Catching up with Sonja I asked her why she was committing to 52 weeks of marathons, how she hoped to do it and why.
After Sonja ran a 100-mile event in August she said her days of this type of ultra running were over. Yet, she still wanted to challenge herself in some way. It was during various conversations with friends that the idea was born to run 52 marathons during 2012 after Sonja turned 52 in December. Although Sonja will run a few registered Marathons throughout the year, most of the runs will take place Sunday mornings starting from the Arboretum ( a well known grassy spot along the rideau canal).
Sonja says she will continue to raise money for the Snowsuit Fund and in keeping with the 52 theme she hopes to raise $5,200.
Canada saw numerous cross-Canada relays in 2011 with the Rick Hansen anniversary relay Relay, One Nation Run, Take Me Outside, Marathon of Health and the Run to Live who are almost finished their trip across our land as I write. These relays, organized runs are great, but there are often amazing, great smaller efforts made by runners in every province, city, town or village that are also worth profiling and knowing about.
I wish Sonja the best of luck and have committed to running with her for at least one of her marathons.
See you on the roads or in the blogosphere.
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