Tuesday, December 6, 2011

The Blue Ridge Marathon: Are You Ready?

Runners, are you looking for a BIGGER challenge?  Here’s an offer just for you!
Picture this -- a cool breeze at your back, the scent of blossoming flowers, “purple mountain’s majesty” in front of you…and the SEARING pain in your quads with each and every stride down this effing mountain! 
Don’t come to Roanoke, Virginia to enjoy a relaxing weekend; come to see just how much the National College Blue Ridge Marathon can kick your butt.  

If you’re one of the growing population of marathoners seeking challenging marathons to test your mental and physical endurance, you may have noticed a rivalry quickly building between the National College Blue Ridge Marathon in Roanoke, Virginia and the TMC Mount Lemmon Marathon in Tucson, Arizona.  Both races claim to be America’s toughest road marathon. 

When organizers of the Blue Ridge Marathon learned about Mount Lemmon’s claim they issued a challenge to “let the runners decide which is tougher”, and they backed their challenge by offering free entries into their race to anyone who had just completed the Mount Lemmon Marathon.

About 20 runners accepted the offer and hit the pavement this past April. After the race, organizers showed some southern hospitality by treating the Mount Lemmon runners to breakfast at Thelma’s Chicken and Waffles.  Those who know Thelma’s would argue this was a bribe…and that may be the case. Regardless after experiencing 26.2 miles of elevation change, pounding rain and hail, and a course that trekked through the downtown area, followed a river, climbed the mountain, and took runners back down the mountain, runners were asked to share their experience.  Here’s what they had to say:

Congrats to Brad Rennick, the Winner of A Free Entry to 
the Blue Ridge Marathon! 
And a big thanks to the Blue Ridge Marathon race director for providing such an awesome giveway for the blog!
For more information on the two races 
National College Blue Ridge Marathon
Roanoke, Virginia
TMC Mount Lemmon Marathon
Tucson, Ariz.
Three mountains to ascend and descend, totaling 7,200 feet of elevation change.
Gradual climb of 6,000 feet.

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