Pyongyang Half Marathon 2017 via GoPro
May 7, 2017
In April I was in North Korea to run the 2017 Pyongyang Half Marathon, or the “28th Annual Mangyongdae Prize International Marathon” as it’s officially called. I ran with a GoPro and recorded the whole course: the streets and sights of Pyongyang, starting and finishing in a packed 50,000-person stadium, and lots of friendly faces and high-fiving kids along the way. Here’s 1:35:17 condensed into about 8 minutes:
In of one of the most isolated places on earth, tens of thousands of people came out to cheer on runners from all over the world. And for those few hours, politics didn’t matter. Kids lined the streets to high-five runners, and people cheered the effort that all the athletes made every bit as much as they took pride in supporting their own countrymen and women.
I am constantly reminded of the power of sports—and the running community in particular, I think—in bringing people together and reminding us that we share a common humanity; that despite seemingly insurmountable political or cultural differences, there’s always room to embrace some aspect of our lives that we share with others. And to me, in a world that feels more and more divided, a little bit of that goes a long way.