Though some sports are likely cemented into our culture for years to come, others are fading off the map and inspiring fewer people each year.
One such sport is the practice of ultra marathon running, a grueling sport that often spans over multiple days.
This sport is a true test of the human body, but it is seeing less and less participation globally each year.
A New York Times article details the steady decline of the sport and how devotees are rallying to keep ultra marathons going.
“Multi Day foot races are the fringe of an already fringe sport, and devotees such as Cherns often feel like the floppy disks of ultrarunning: outdated and rarely seen, but keepers of the origins of the sport.
Six-day races and multi day challenges date as far back as the 18th century, and were reborn in the 1980s as an inclusive medium for self-challenge by leaders like Sri Chinmoy. When Fred Lebow and the New York Road Runners started a six-day race in 1983, it seemed multi day racing might explode into the mainstream. But the event was canceled two years later and has not returned.
A sport in which times were tracked in miles per hour not minutes per mile failed to resonate with the masses. The distances they ran made more sense in relation to truck drivers and migratory birds. So last September, many multi day events were decertified by their own governing body, the International Association of Ultrarunners. It was the final straw for Cherns. He had seen enough and created his own group: the Global Organization of Multiday Ultramarathoners. The key, he thought, was creating the allure of being crowned a “World Champion.”
Read the rest of this article here.
The article spotlights several ultra marathoners and their respective experiences, but all compete in ultra marathoning for the same reason: to test their limits and give themselves a challenge.
Ultimately, the challenge of any given item is what gets people going. This applies to sports, business, school, and any other activity.
It all comes down to motivation and dedication, and each niche has individuals who are willing to go the extra mile in whatever they are doing.
Ultra marathoning will never be extinct, because there will always be people who want to test their limits.
Apply this idea to your business strategy and your niche. Know that there will always be people in need of your services and products, and be willing to go the extra mile to serve your customers.
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