Spirit of the Marathon

26.2. To runners, 26.2 is more than just a number. It is not simply the number of miles they train in a week, but the enumeration of the trials they struggle with and endure for the joy of crossing the finish line. For one night only, January 24th, Spirit of the Marathon goes behind the scenes as “the first ever non-fiction feature film to capture the drama and essence of the famed 26.2 mile running event.” The winner of Audience Choice Award at the Chicago International Film Festival and of the Best Picture at the Mammoth Film Festival, Spirit of the Marathon follows six different athletes on four continents and five countries. The featured athletes include World Class Marathoner Daniel Njenga, 2004 Olympic Bronze Medalist Deena Kastor and several first time marathoners as they prepare themselves to face the challenges of the Chicago Marathon. Like these athletes, some Ames High students have trained and run in marathons. “I think the movie will be clutch,” senior David Hickok said. “I’m just looking forward to seeing the personal training that these people have done. I didn’t know what I was doing when I was training and just ran as much as possible.” Another senior, Shawn Bergeson, ran with Hickok at the Overland Park Marathon in Kansas. “It was a lot more fun having Shawn run with me in Kansas,” Hickok said. “It’s just a lot nicer to have someone to talk to instead of running by myself like I did at Des Moines.” “I’m just glad because I beat David and I didn’t even train for it,” Bergeson said. “I probably won’t be running any more marathons, though. It’s too hard to train for and it’s just not worth it.” Others, such as senior Clark Ennis, have been inspired to run marathons themselves. “I’m going to run a marathon in all 50 states,” Ennis said. As the website for the movie says, the film is “more than a sports movie—Spirit of the Marathon is an inspirational journey of perseverance and personal triumph; a spectacle that will be embraced by runners and non-runners alike.”