If ever you needed motivation to get moving, a rhino charging full-pelt through the long grass in your direction ought to do it. Kenya, famed for its long-distance prowess and safaris, combines both in the annual Safaricom Lewa Marathon, a dirt-track, hill-rippled, high-altitude and animal-infested epic unlike any other. The Lewa Conservancy, a swathe of acacia woodland and sweeping savannah just north of Mount Kenya, is home to more than 100 rhino, plus elephant, zebra, giraffe and buffalo. Luckily it’s also patrolled by armed rangers and helicopters on race day to keep dangerous beasties at bay.
The Lewa Marathon (www.safaricom.co.ke/safaricommarathon) is held in late June, when midday temperatures reach 30°C; there are water stations every 2.5km.