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The 20 Minute Difference

Wake Up Call

By Judy Morrison

Hey girls, did you know that for a guy of your age to beat you in a marathon he must beat you by twenty minutes! And in a half marathon it is ten minutes and in a 10k it is at least three minutes.
Really, this is so. The Boston Marathon gives men and women of the same age qualifying times that vary by thirty minutes. I feel that thirty might be somewhat excessive but do believe twenty is realistic. Check the finishing times of a few marathons and subtract the time difference between the winning female and the winning male. Twenty minutes is a valid number.
I feel this is information that every runner, either male or female, should know. I’m tired of hearing about the super feats of various men when I know a number of women who perform the same tasks at a female level of capability. Women must start to recognize that they have 30% less muscle and cannot possibly perform at the same level as men.
So, the next time some girl tells you she ran a 3h40m marathon subtract 20 minutes and put her up on a pedestal. Also, start telling all those super human stories about the girls you know and about yourself and maybe soon the guys will tell some of the same stories, too. And the next time some guy tells you his marathon time add on 20 minutes. Believe me when I say your reaction will be considerably diminished. Girls have to work on their image. Give yourselves credit and ‘talk it up’. Women don’t have to actually beat men before they have truly beaten them.
And why am I writing this. I have been hearing too many ‘super male’ stories lately. Guys, get a grip. It is not a level playing field and females deserve a lot more credit.
Anyway, that’s my editorial statement for the month. I suspect that it will generate a lot of animated discussion in running groups all over town…and necessarily so.

Gord - Women in Motion

Page revised April 16.2006