Further to the letter regarding water bottles at the Dublin Marathon, it would be great if the organisers were inspired by this year’s London Marathon.

A total of 200,000 edible water “pods”, made from an edible, biodegradable seaweed, were distributed to runners. Definitely something noble to consider for this island nation.

Orla Gilhooly,


Plastic bottles at the Dublin Marathon (Irish Times letters page)

Pic: Sports Inquirer

49 thoughts on “In One

  1. Andyourpointiswhatexactly?

    ‘Definitely something noble to consider for this island nation.’

    We’re talking water pods here, not some new socio-economic ethos. Dial it down, Orla.

          1. Nigel

            Never mind pods or bottles, when they come round
            Have teams of firemen to hose ’em down.

          2. Ads

            Their drinking water tastes of borage
            But rehydration gives them courage
            “Don’t give me water, give me gin,
            “The taste of liquidated sin”

  2. rotide

    Please tell me this headline is a reference to Bullseye, because that’s what I’m hearing when I read it.

  3. Spaghetti Hoop

    Yes please! I live on the marathon route and the litter left behind by the runners is disgusting. Volunteers have to pick it all up. Marathons and fun-runs and festivals are some of life’s great pleasures but the trash they leave behind negates everything that was good about them.

    1. Spud

      Just hold a ‘Plogging’ Marathon / 10k etc… after the main event!
      Problem solved :)

    2. TheQ47

      So what do you think the runner should do? Bring all the water bottles they collect along the way with them to the end? These pods seem like a great idea.

      1. Spaghetti Hoop

        I hike and I use a 1L water pouch in my back-pack with a line. It’s easy to strap this to your arm too. I don’t think runnners throw plastic bottles around when they are training so why do they do it on 10ks and marathons? It’s a responsibility disorder. Peppered with a false sense of one’s awesomeness. They assume that there is always someone to clean up after them because they have run a marathon.

        1. George

          To be fair it is hard to provide bins for the use of that many people so the sensible way to manage the litter is to clean it up directly after or during the race.

        2. b

          they assume someone is there to clean up because they pay a hefty fee to participate in the marathon which should cover the clean up

          that’s not to say they should be flinging bottles into ditches or gardens but throwing it to the side of the road or near a bin is reasonable

          1. Spaghetti Hoop

            So money excuses it? Right.
            And George, lack of bins excuses it?
            Not only does it take a team of people to clean up afterwards but it also takes 450 years for one plastic bottle to break down. But the marathon runners paid €70 to enter the race so that’s all okay.

      2. Stephen

        I don’t even think they should be supplied with water if I’m honest. They should bring and take home everything that they need

        1. scottser

          quite right. and anyone found littering should have their shoes confiscated and finish the race barefoot.

  4. Slightly Bemused

    While I do truly applaud the sentiment, I am allergic to seafood and seaweed products. Is there another option for these pods?

    And seriously, do they expect people to eat the pod, or just bite into it and drink the water?

      1. Andyourpointiswhatexactly?

        Mate of mine told a very funny story about going up to base camp on Mt Everest. A guy jogged past them with all the fanciest of gear, sipping water out of one of those yolks: liking the way he looked and looking the way he liked. Around 5 hours later they saw him being carried down the mountain by some Sherpas, comatose.

        1. Spaghetti Hoop

          What happened to him – altitude sickness? Or maybe attitude sickness wha?

  5. The Old Boy

    That’s an interesting idea. I can see a couple of issues though. The capsules appear to hold a lot less than the standard half-litre water bottle. Do runners tend to gulp a few mouthfuls and then chuck the balance? The second is that the individual pods need to be kept in food-grade conditions right up to the point of consumption, which must be a real logistical challenge compared to bottles.

    1. Brother Barnabas

      getting the, eh, wrong end of the stick there, old boy

      these pods work like suppositories – the only real issue is the inevitable disruption to the runner’s momentum, but lessened with practice

          1. Janet, I ate my avatar

            the gloves thing actually happened to me, you haven’t lived until you have fouled a Parisian gutter while French people cry “aller Janet” never put your real name on a bib

          2. Andyourpointiswhatexactly?

            I’m not sure I could describe the expression my face made while reading that.

    2. TheQ47

      As someone who’s run a few marathons, I can say that generally, most runners only take a few gulps of their water, and throw the rest of it away. These seaweed pods seem like a great idea.

  6. Daisy Chainsaw

    The London Marathon where they didn’t have water stations for hundreds of slower runners? Oh yeah. That’s the standard to aspire to. https://www.runnersworld.com/news/a27367110/london-marathon-slower-runners-bullied/

    “In a Facebook post on the Monday night after the race, official 7:30 pacer Elizabeth Ayres detailed a list of complaints that included shouted insults, sweeper cars pushing her to run faster and onto the sidewalk, aid stations already packed up and without water…”

    1. Zaccone

      Perhaps Elizabeth should have run a bit faster? Pretty easy solution. Its like giving out about bouncers asking you to leave half your pint behind when its 30 minutes after last orders. Its your own fault if you’re being unreasonably slow.

        1. Andyourpointiswhatexactly?

          She would have properly fupped the 7h30 crew up if she’d hared it along the course. Heh.

        2. Andyourpointiswhatexactly?

          I’m trying to work it out. 7h30 means you’d ‘run’ each mile in 17 mins. Jaysus. I mean, that’s not running. That’s strolling.

    1. Termagant

      But then you’d have to release a bigger, hungrier breed of cup to predate the original cups to extinction, at which point you’re right back at the too many cups scenario.

    2. The Old Boy

      That would seem the obvious solution. Or are paper cups similarly a blot on the landscape?

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