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The second annual Secret Marathon to be held March 6

Held during the week of International Women's Day, the series honours our right to be free to run

Tomorrow, on the eve of International Women’s Day, in 16 locations across the country as well as a virtual location, the second annual Secret Marathon 3K run will be held.

The marathon has its roots in the documentary film of the same name, which looks at the running of Afghanistan’s only marathon. The route of the Marathon of Afghanistan had to be kept secret to ensure the safety of its female participants.

Toronto filmmaker Kate McKenzie travelled to the country in secret to work on the documentary alongside legendary marathon runner Martin Parnell.

“It has been my life’s work to share stories from places where we usually only hear the negative. These stories have the power to show that there is hope and that it is realistic that there could one day be peace,” says McKenzie. “When Martin told me he was planning to go to Afghanistan and invited me to join I knew it was an amazing opportunity to share a story that matters.”

When McKenzie returned home after filming, she had the urge to create an event to honour that story and celebrate the rights of all of us to have the freedom to run. When she met the Running Room’s John Stanton at a race in Ottawa, the two collaborated on the Secret Marathon event series. The event also has a program for schools.

"The goal of The Secret Marathon 3K is to celebrate our right to be free to run and walk in our community. Many women both here in Canada and in Afghanistan don't feel safe to run at night or alone and we want to change that by bringing our community together to celebrate everyone's right to be free to run or walk in their community," says McKenzie, the National Race Director of the event. It’s an inspiring story about community and empowerment. And it’s pretty perfect for this week.

The event is a 1.5km out and back race, and just like in the Marathon of Afghanistan the route is revealed at the beginning of the event.

Locations for The Secret Marathon 3K: Victoria, Vancouver, Kelowna, Calgary, Red Deer, Edmonton, Winnipeg, Peterborough, Barrie, Waterloo, Kingston, Toronto, Ottawa, Fredericton, Halifax, St.John’s.

For information on a race location near you, go to the Running Room.
 

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