By David Orr – Writer –
The 32nd running of the Florence Marathon, that ultimate test of the super-athlete and the everyman, takes place on November 29. The Florence version of the road-race marries a mental tour of strength and endurance with a historical tour of one of the world’s most beautiful cities.
With over 10,000 runners, Florence is the second largest race by participation (after Rome) in Italy, ensuring that participants are carried along in a small but manageable city of fellow athletes. For those who fear hills, take heart, the route through the city is as flat as they come. The finish is in the magnificent Santa Croce where you can kneel before the statue of Dante to find your inner Paradiso or Inferno, depending on how much training you did beforehand.
Early bird registers can take advantage of a reduced rate (60 Euro) up to October 31 – the price goes up to 80 Euro from November 1 onwards. The Marathon Clap Contest returns for the third consecutive year, with musicians, folk music, and even comedians organized at 1 km intervals to help lift those focused minds and propel thyself above thy lactate buildup.
Additionally, there are special packages online, combining accommodations, dinner, and the race application itself (forms must be completed by October 31).
The Marathon is one of the most inspiring events a human can witness. To take part is to see fellow runners reduced to a sauce of exhaustion and exhilaration, to feel your insides simultaneously depleted, yet full of spirit, and Florence is a beautiful setting to watch it all unfold.