When I do my long runs I tend to listen to podcasts or audio books rather than music. And since I discovered Marathon Talk, presented by Martin Yelling (husband of Liz) and Tom Williams, I actually look forward to long runs more, because I can listen to their weekly updates and chatter. Sad, but true!
Focussed mainly on marathons, it’s about 1hr15 long and covers world marathon news, interviews, training info and regular features from the brilliant Tony Audenshaw (plays someone in Emmerdale…). The interactivity with their audience is immense with weekly rants and raves, winner of the week, who’s done the fastest marathon that week (among listeners) etc etc.
Anyone who’s interested in marathons, whether they’re contemplating their first one or signing up to their 50th, will get something from Marathon Talk. I think it should be compulsory listening! And, if you like it, you can download the entire back catalogue of past episodes – for free, of course. That’d keep you going on long runs for a year.
I personally get a lot out of their training features and because they’re well-connected in the running and sports science world, they have access to some fantastically insightful people. Memorable ones for me have been about run/walking marathons, caffeine, Comrades (I even went to another lecture by the brilliant interviewee, Comrades legend Bruce Fordyce on the back of his Marathon Talk interview – might even have to do the race one day!) and Tim Noakes talking about the Central Governor theory (how it’s your brain that makes you stop when you’re tired, not your exhausted muscles).
They regularly organise mass participation events like the Magic Mile, Jantastic, Febulous and Marchvelous – all remote events that runners do on their own turf, then add onto the Marathon Talk website. Great motivators. They were also behind the marvellous RunforJapan that helped raise thousands for victims of the Japanese earthquake last year.
They do look at other endurance sports to a certain extent if it’s relevant to marathoning so ironman and ultra running are both featured from time to time.
Martin and Tom’s presentation and interviewing styles and skills have developed over the two years it’s been running. They work brilliantly together and you can tell they’re good friends who have great respect both for each other, the sport and their audience. Their audience, by the way, is global and covers first timers, 6 hr+ run/walkers, elites, and everyone in between. Everyone is catered for and there is absolutely no condescension towards slower runners – it all feels very friendly.
The podcast’s free. You can download it from iTunes, from their website and through other channels if you don’t have an Apple mp3 player.
Visit www.marathontalk.com and give it a go.