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Winter Marathon Center Gets Raves

Posted January. 13, 2007 03:00,   


“Wow! It’s amazing!”

When Kim Jae-ryong(41), a marathon coach, visited a Seogwipo Dong-A Marathon Center located in Gangchanghak Park, Jeju, he was surprised at its excellent facilities.

“This is the best training environment with its optimal facilities including cross-country courses, two marathon tracks and hotel-grade accommodations. Why haven’t we started our training programs here from the beginning? This place is better than foreign training places.”

Hotel-grade Accommodations and Cross-country Courses-

On January 10, he and his team arrived for training at the center. After their first training experience at the center on the following day, he said, “I’ve never seen such a perfect training center like this. There are excellent accommodations and healthy foods.

We just have to concentrate on our training. It is perfect conditions for athletes. They like it as well. I told them, ‘Let’s run and run! Practice and practice!’”

Mr. Kim, who recorded a 2:09:30 in the 1992 Dong-A Marathon actually planned to stay here for 20 days. But with such a good environment, he extended the schedule to a month.

Seogwipo Dong-A marathon center, home to a marathon, is now quite busy. Some 31 athletes from KEPCO, Goyang City Hall, Keimyung University, and Daegu Seongsan Middle School are committed to training to quicken their records.

The average temperature here is 10 degrees Celsius, suitable for long-distance running, and snow precipitation is low in the winter. Seogwipo is a very attractive place for marathon training. Dona-A Marathon Center is Korea’s first professionalized marathon facility built at the end of 2005. Seogwipo city has rented land and the Dong-A Marathon Dream Tree Foundation invested three billion won into it.

With an underground and second floor building on 1,400 pyeong, all necessary facilities for marathon training including 21 hotel-grade guest rooms (for two, four, eight, and 10 people), a fitness center, a seminar room, restrooms and a hot tub are accommodated. A 3.8 km cross-country track, Gangchanghak Park, as well as two marathon tracks are just next to the center. This is an ideal environment for diverse training including interval-training. Other facilities include grounds for baseball, softball, in-line skating, and gyms.

Good Weather and Healthy Food; No Need to go Abroad-

Jang Chang-soo, a marathon coach at Keimyung University said, “Once we had to stay in motels in town for training days, I was so worried about immoral behavior of the athletes. But here, I’m no longer worried about it.”

Jang Jong-soo (23, KEPCO) said, “Facilities in the center are excellent. Though somewhat boring due to a lack of entertainment, it’s good for training!” Park Yoon-gi (58), a director of the center, said, “Once-visited coaches and athletes come again. They are satisfied with the facilities. We support and allow athletes to concentrate on their training. All training aspects are prepared for them.”