By Gavin Gibbon
Residents tasked with completing 42.195km course of their choice inside their house
Residents in Dubai are being challenged to run a marathon at home.
The initiative has been launched by Dubai Sports Council, in collaboration with ASICS Middle East and 5:30 Run club as part of the ‘Be Fit, Be Safe’ and #stayhome campaigns.
A first of its kind in the world, the Marathon at Home will be a timed 42.195km race open to people of all ages and abilities, and will take place on Friday, April 10, between 8am and 6pm, UAE time, with a 10-hour time cap.
Fuad Naser, founder of 5:30 Run club, said: “With the spread of Covid-19, it was our responsibility to support the government and country in promoting #StayHome in order to #StaySafe. These challenging situations inspired us to think out of the box and give our community a way to achieve and maintain an active lifestyle, while still #StayingHome.
“So we came up with the idea of organising a ‘Marathon at Home’. The main goal of this event is to show that ‘impossible’ is not in our dictionary and that you can still train for a marathon at home.”
Participants can decide on the shape of their running course, but running on a treadmill or any other training equipment will not be accepted. Running in public areas is also not allowed - the participant will need to physically run on ground, and inside their house.
Those taking part will also have to make sure they have a fully charged smartwatch or smartphone, with the Strava app installed and activated. They will have to join the “Marathon at Home” group on Strava and stay connected as the app will detect their movement and will assist in keeping track of their timing and distance traveled.
Registration for the Marathon at Home is open now, until April 6, through the www.530run.club website, but race entry is non-transferable between individuals and relays are not allowed.
All participants receive a finisher certificate from ASICSME and 5:30 Run, while all finishers will receive an ASICS t-shirt and a finisher medal.
The top three finishers in the two categories – men and women - will get a full running gear kit by ASICS, an entry ticket to the Moscow Marathon, which is scheduled for September, and a finisher medal.
The top 10, meanwhile, will receive 10 EMS (Electrical Muscle Stimulation) functional training sessions from Vertexfitness.
Ana Elisa Seixas, marketing manager ASICS AME, added: “Despite the circumstances, it is simply amazing to watch the running community in Dubai coming together and supporting each other.”