Nijmegen march off to strong start
The international sports event kicked off Tuesday with 'a good first day’s walking.'
Nijmegen – The Nijmegen Four Day March may sound like a walk in the park, but the world's largest walking event demands strength, preparation and a certain personality.
“We walked from Lincoln,UK to [Nijmegen],” told an English-speaking participant to the NOS Journaal news programme Tuesday night.
When the reporter reminded the two men that there is a sea in between the two countries, the participant and his friend admitted to sleeping on the ferry on the way to Netherlands.
“But we walked from Rotterdam to here,” he added.
More than 41,000 people from 64 countries signed up to walk the standard 30, 40 or 50 kilometre distances in the 2009 march that began Tuesday.
The international sports event kicked off with “a good first day’s walking,” said organiser Johan Willemstein.
The first day began at four o'clock in the morning for the 50 kilometre-walkers.
A British man participating in the march for the 13th time crossed the finish line first at 10:45, according to the event's website.
Some participants fainted from dehydration on the first day of the march, partly to blame on the warm, summer weather.
However, walkers were motivated to continue their four-day journey, which ends Friday.
When one participant was asked how she felt about the first day of walking, she smiled.
“Wonderful. I'm really happy to be doing this,” she said.
Radio Netherlands / Jennifer Evans / Expatica