The brand Marathon Watch Co. is known far and wide for developing true mil-spec watches that are big, chunky, functional, and seemingly impervious timepieces that see actual combat even in this day and age. However, this coming summer Marathon, along with Crown & Buckle and aBlogtoWatch, will delve into battle of another sort: the fight against cancer. How does this Canadian-based military watch manufacturer plan on fighting and helping to defeat a disease? Well for starters, it sponsors a cycling team for the 2016 Ride To Conquer Cancer, to raise awareness and funds for treatments and therapies that can benefit us all. What is the Ride To Conquer Cancer, and why is ABTW involved? Glad you asked.


Every year, thousands of cyclists complete a 200km (125 mile) endurance ride in Ontario, Canada, as an act of solidarity for those who are struggling, have struggled, or will struggle with cancer in their lifetime. This year from June 11th to 12th, yours truly will be the Captain of team Marathon Watch: Time For A Cure in this long and grueling trek from Toronto to Niagara Falls.

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Press image from the 2015 Ride To Conquer Cancer

Press image from the 2015 Ride To Conquer Cancer

As an additional challenge, I’m planning on doing this ride on a road bike with one single gear. Now, I’m not some hipster doing this in skinny jeans while holding a piping hot latte. No, I just figured that: A) the added uncertainty and my suffering can be your entertainment! And B) my dad’s cousin used to ride a fixed gear bike to and from work every day in the South African heat without complaint. It’s a piece of family folklore, and I feel compelled to pay homage to this feat in some way.


So what will come from all of this? Along with our own limits, our team will be testing the durability and usability of some military-grade Marathon timepieces: We will train with, ride with, and generally abuse three Marathon watch models to see if analog time-telling still holds a place in todays age of smartwatches, Fitbits, and other plastic contraptions with blinking lights and Bluetooth technology. We’ll be posting the in-depth reviews here on ABTW with regular team updates on our social media channels for your horological enjoyment. Also, be sure to keep your eyes peeled for team-related watch giveaways and a Crown & Buckle team NATO strap that will become available around mid-April.


So why is aBlogtoWatch getting behind such a cause? Aside from the potential for some interesting content for our readers, we often feel it’s important to give back to our team, our audience, and the people that have been good to us. It’s a grim reality that cancer has, and will continue to affect the people we care about, and getting involved with an event like this can benefit everyone in some way.

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We are also drawing inspiration from my fellow RedBar member Mike Werb (@mikeswatches on Instagram), who a while back started the campaign #Straps4ACure on Instagram — with the help of Crown & Buckle, no less. With one 20mm NATO strap, a hashtag, and much community support, he was able to raise over $15,000 for breast cancer research to date. Impressive? We think so, and it definitely brought people in the #watchfam together.


Quite simply, we hope that by engaging the watch-loving community we can make a difference, however small, for the future of everyone… Yes, even the people at Gawker who apparently think we are all a bunch of watch collecting assholes.

But that’s just the point: cancer doesn’t care what anyone thinks, what you have in your watch box, whether you are rich or poor, high-class or low-brow. It’s a faceless culprit with no motive, and we want to help researchers at Princess Margaret make a change.


It’s a cause close to the hearts of the ABTW team and everyone involved, so be sure to stay tuned for some cool watch content in relation to an important cause and search #timeforacure on Instagram.

I’m giving my personal attention to this charity because I feel that it is a worthy use of my time and effort. I also get to be active and create new content while supporting a organization that is making a real difference. If you feel the same and want to know how you can help, or support my team’s efforts to promote positive social change, then visit our official page to learn more or make a tax-deductible contribution.

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