Runners and volunteers from around the world are going the distance in Sierra Leone
Runners prepared for the race by stretching and warming up together in the early hours of the morning, many not familiar with the heat they were about to face.
Sierra Leon Marathon distances
The Sierra Leone Marathon offers distances for all levels from the 5km, 10km, and 21km to the full 42km. All routes offer some of the most beautiful scenery of tropical forests and local villages.
The buzz at the start line won’t fail to get you ready for the run ahead. On the run 42km run, you’ll experience local traders setting up for the day, jungle-lined highway and the company of local children who run with you as your pass their village.
On the 21km run, you will pass through the buzzing town where crowds will cheer you on as you say goodbye to the full marathon runners. High fives and cheering from local children will push you to keep going till you reach the finish line.
Running the 10km will take you to the marketplace where market stalls sell everything from traditional lappa fabric to homemade palm wine. The spirit of the town will spur you on as you head towards local schools and family businesses supported by Street Child .
The 5km is a humbling experience, being joined by local amputees, victims of the devasting civil war. Runners soak up the atmosphere by running pass local bars, butchers and market stalls.
No matter the distance, there are water stations (rehydration sachet/drinks), medical support and live music. The course snakes through small villages and markets with excited spectators cheering you on and shouting “thank you.” It is this support that helps you withstand the Sierra Leone heat.
Once you have completed the marathon, you get rewarded at the finish line with a cold Star beer and a hand-carved medal to remember your experience.
As a volunteer, you play a huge role in being a part of a team who make sure the marathon runs smoothly on the day. Set up water stations on the route, give out medals, record results, help the medical team, and assist with transport. Turn your experience into your very own cheer station and shout words of encouragement to the incredible marathon runners.