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Leonard Korir and Jordan Hasay going after course records at Gate River Run

The 2018 Gate River Run, which also serves as the USA Track and Field 15K National Championship, will be held on Saturday, March 10, in Jacksonville, Florida. The championship will feature $60,000 in prize money with $10,000 awards for the first place male and female finishers. The reigning men’s and women’s champions are returning to defend their titles: Olympian Leonard Korir (43:22), running for the US Army World Class Athlete Program (WCAP) and Jordan Hasay (49:28), representing The Nike Oregon Project. Other elite runners include Molly Huddle, Sam Chelanga and Ryan Vail. The course records to beat are: men’s 42:22 was set in 1995 by Todd Williams, women’s 47:03 set in 2014 by Shalane Flanagan. (Fri 2) ⚡AMP
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Narayan is training to win Chilli Suva Marathon once more

KENNOL Narayan was 22 years old when he won the ultra marathon in the 2016 Island Chill Suva Marathon. He stunned many as a first-timer as he reached the tape first after running 52 kilometres. He clocked 3 hours and 15 minutes. The lanky runner will be among competitors in this year's run. "I try to be at the top of my game to win," he said. "If you want to be serious about sports and education, don't indulge in drugs, alcohol or cigarette. "As an athlete it is very important to remain disciplined, humble, focused and respectful to all peers. "It's a learning curve, but it will take a person far, not just in the sports, but in the personal and professional arena," Narayan said."My running career started as an exercise to keep healthy." (Fri 2) ⚡AMP
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Meb is running the New York City Marathon again this year but not up front

“I enjoy running!” says Meb Keflezighi. “I don’t have to be up in the front or leading the pack. I can still do one or two races a year at an easier pace. I care about inspiring the next generation of runners.” Keflezighi has too much heart and sole to spectate from the sidelines for long, which is why he’s returning to the TCS New York City Marathon this November as a charity runner and ambassador for NYRR Team For Kids supporting youth and community programs. “I’ve done 26 competitive marathons (he won the 2009 NYC marathon in 2:09:15)... I’m ready for the next chapter of my life,” says Meb. He is planning on running around three hours at this year’s NYC Marathon. He will be serving as a team ambassador and special advisor to the charity runners to motivate them toward their fundraising goals...Meb is the only athlete ever to win the Boston and the New York City Marathons and an Olympic marathon medal. (Thu 1) ⚡AMP
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One of the world's leading experts in long distance running, Dr David Martin has Died

Dr. David Martin, USATF marathon stalwart and dedicated researcher, died February 28 in Decatur, Georgia after a long battle with Parkinson’s disease. He was 78. Martin was one of the exercise physiologists responsible for USATF’s heat-training program assisting Team USATF marathoners Deena Kastor and Meb Keflezighi on to the medal podium at the 2004 Athens Olympic Games, sharing his research on ways to train and race in hot weather with Team USATF athletes’ personal coaches. Recognized as one of the world's leading experts in long distance running, Martin published more than 50 articles in coaching journals intended to assist coaches and athletes understand the science of human athletic performance. He published five books including Better Training for Distance Runners in 1997. R.I.P. my friend, you will be missed. (Thu 1) ⚡AMP
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One of the Greatest American Distance Runners of all times has to be Gerry Lindgren

DID YOU KNOW: Here are some reasons why Gerry Lindgren is still one of American's greatest distance runners ever...In 1964, as a high school senior, Lindgren ran 5000 meters in 13:44, on a clay track in Compton, CA setting a U.S. high school record that would remain unbroken for 40 years...On July 25, 1964, Lindgren outran two seasoned Russian runners to win the 10,000m event in the US-USSR Track Meet in Los Angeles...Lindgren ran 200 miles a week for 6 weeks in preparation for the US-USSR meet. After that victory, he also set a new teenage record of 13:17.0 for 3 miles while competing in Jamaica...Lindgren and Billy Mills battled each other in the 6-mile at the 1965 AAU Nationals meet. Mills won with a diving lean, while both were timed in 27:11.6, a new world record...Maybe Lindgren's greatest race came during a May 1966 NCAA Regional meet at age 20, in the 3-mile run on a dirt track during a cold, windy day in Seattle. He raced to 12:53.0, just missing the world record of 12:52.4 held by Ron Clarke..."Gerry did some amazing things in his short career," says Bob Anderson. "It was very exciting meeting Gerry and featuring him in our movie A Long Run." Gerry has been living in Hawaii since 1980 and still runs regularly. (Thu 1) ⚡AMP
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Singapore Fastest Half Marathoner, Soh Rui Yong, getting ready for the World Championships

Soh Rui Yong is no stranger in Singapore's running scene. Soh holds the Singapore National 10,000m record with 31:15 set in 2014. He ran his first marathon in 2014 at the California International Marathon finishing in 2:26:01. 14. His childhood dream was to win a SEA Games gold medal, stand on the podium and hear Majulah Singapura played. He has achieved this dream twice...Soh ran 1:08:37 half marathon in strong winds and snowy conditions in 2018 Marugame Half Marathon. This record earned him a spot at the upcoming World Half Marathon Championships in Valencia on March 24 2018. What does he like better he was asked, "Road race has the bigger community, more racing opportunities, more money, more fun. Track racing needs to learn from road racing to market and run their events better. Especially in Singapore." (Thu 1) ⚡AMP
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Zanoguera wins Sahara Marathon as she experience firsthand life as a refugee in Algeria

Winning her first marathon might be an accomplishment on its own, but former UT basketball player Inma Zanoguera also did it in the Sahara Desert. Zanoguera completed the Sahara Marathon in 3:48:11, six seconds ahead of Sonia Bernal from Spain. Zanoguera and documentarian Michelle-Andrea Girouard are still in Tindouf, Algeria, staying with Sahrawi refugee families. Zanoguera participated in the marathon because she recently discovered her biological mother was one of these refugees. As part of an emotional journey across the world to her roots, Zanoguera wanted to experience firsthand what kind of life her mother led before her untimely death when Zanoguera was three years old (Thu 1) ⚡AMP
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Wisdom from the World's Best Marathoner as he Prepares for London

Eliud Kipchoge, the Olympic marathon champion and winner of seven consecutive world-class marathons (and counting), offer some advice. “In the marathon, the first half is just a normal run. At 15k to 20k everybody is still going to be there. Where the marathon starts is after 30k. That’s where you feel pain everywhere in your body. The muscles are really aching, and only the most prepared and well-organized athlete is going to do well after that. I’ll go with the pace, but after 30k, I’ll change to my own pace. And if you’re ready to follow me, then we can go together.” On managing pain during a marathon: “When I have a lot of pain, I try to confuse my mind to forget about the pain and think about the distance. I don’t want pain to be in my mind, because I’d really lose focus on running. After winning, you won’t have that pain, but it comes later, the next day, you don’t go up or down stairs.” (Thu 1) ⚡AMP
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There has never been this much money put on the table for marathoners and their coaches

Japan's Project Exceed is continuing for two more years and already $1.5 million dollars has been awarded to Japanese runners, their coaches and clubs. The next approved race is this weekend, the Lake Biwa Marathon... The program was started in March 2015 and goes until March 2020. The idea of the program is to give incentives to Japanese runners to be competitive in the marathon at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, in fact to win the gold medal... To reach this goal, Project Exceed was established to encourage Japanese runners to break the Marathon National Record (men 2:06:16 and women 2:19:12). The new men's record is now 2:06:11 set by Yuta Shitara Feb 25 at the Tokyo Marathon and 160 million Yen ($1.5 million US dollars) was awarded through this program. The program also pays out 10 Million Yen to all men who break 2:06:59 and women 2:21:59. ... also 50 Million Yen to their coach or team if they break the NR...The same runner can only earn the 100 million yen once per year but the other 10 million yen ($93,000US) bonus money would be granted. This program has big sponsors behind it: Honda, Toyota, Panasonic, Mitsubishi, Fujitsu, just to name a few. (Wed 28) ⚡AMP
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Gus McKechnie has cerebral palsy and is going to run a Marathon

Gus McKechine suffers from a form of cerebral palsy is out to prove you can do anything you set your mind to – by completing the Southampton Marathon in the UK using hiking sticks. He is going to push his body and mind to the limits as he takes on the Marathon April 22. The 42-year-old, who also has hemiparesis, says he wants to show others the benefits of a positive mental attitude by completing the challenge. “It can be easy to listen to the negative part of your brain that makes you think ‘I couldn’t possibly do that’ or ‘I’m not strong enough’. I want to show people that they can achieve so much more than they give themselves credit for,” he says. Good luck Gus. He hopes to complete the full marathon in five and a half hours – 30 minutes under the official cut-off time for participants. (Wed 28) ⚡AMP
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It is going to be tough, I really want this, at least to try says a boy (16) who wants to run his first half

Zephiebee's advice on Reddit's running group is solid: "Without knowing how often and how far you usually run, it'll be tough to give you really good advice. But, here's some beginner advice, assuming you have a bit of experience running and racing: Be realistic about your goal for the Half Marathon. The average half marathon time is about 2 hours if you're in good athletic shape, so be prepared to spend some long hours on the road each week for your long runs! Be prepared to walk/run. Muscle pains and aches are expected, but if you push yourself too hard to go too fast or too far at once, you're increasing your risk of injury. Find someone to run with. Is there a running group to tag along some mid-distance beginner runs you can join? Figure out how your body reacts to water, gatorade and gels on long distances as soon as you can. Nothing's worse than getting to a race and finding out your stomach hates Gu! Good luck." (Wed 28) ⚡AMP
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Adam 'Tango' Holland has won more marathons than anyone else in the UK - 194 to date

Adam Holland, aged 30 from Devon, has won more marathons than anyone else in the UK, with 194 wins to date. He is ranked in the top five in the world for marathon victories. Adam has completed more than 300 marathons and when he was just 23 he had already run 100 marathons, making him the youngest in Europe to reach that landmark. Adam will be part of a large party of British athletes, as he aims to add yet another marathon victgory to his extraordinary record when he lines up for the 20th Logicom Cyprus Marathon in Paphos on Sunday, March 4. (Wed 28) ⚡AMP
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Kenya´s Olympic champion Cheruiyot leads New York Half Marathon

Kenyan Olympic 5,000m champion Vivian Cheruiyot will compete in the New York Half Marathon on March 18 in the build-up to the London Marathon. Cheruiyot, who is the Frankfurt Marathon champion, is the third fastest in the field with a best time of 67:44 behind Ethiopians Mamitu Daska (66:28) and Buze Diriba (66:50). It will be Cheruiyot's first race this year. Her last race was in October last year when she raced to victory in Frankfurt clocking in 2:23:35. "I have a solid training program and will be hopeful it will withstand the challenge of New York. It is always good to see how the body responds in competition so that you can adjust before going to the main marathon competition," Cheruiyot said on Wednesday. (Wed 28) ⚡AMP
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Ritzenhein, in preparation for his second appearance at the Boston Marathon

Dathan Ritzenhein was interested in competing in a half marathon ahead of the Boston Marathon, and he found one of his favorites. Ritzenhein was pegged as one of the top contenders Tuesday when the United Airlines New York City Marathon announced its professional field of runners for the March 18 race. The Rockford resident will use the race in preparation for his second appearance at the Boston Marathon on April 16. Last time he raced it, in 2015, he finished seventh in 2 hours, 11 minutes, 20 seconds and was the top American finisher. (Wed 28) ⚡AMP
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How fast did Amy Cragg run at the Tokyo Marathon?

How fast was Amy Hastings Cragg at the Tokyo Marathon Sunday? Think about this. Only four separate American women have ever run faster. Ever. Here are the top seven times: 2:19:36 Kastor, Deena USA London 4/23/06, 2:20:57 Hasay, Jordan USA Chicago 10/8/17, 2:21:14 Flanagan, Shalane USA Berlin 9/28/14, 2:21:16 Kastor, Deena USA London 4/13/03, 2:21:21 Benoit, Joan USA Chicago 10/20/85, 2:21:25 Kastor, Deena USA Chicago 10/9/05, 2:21:42 Cragg, Hastings, Amy USA Tokyo 2/24/18. from Gary Allen posted on FB. (Tue 27) ⚡AMP
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We now know what Yuta Shitara picked up at the 40K Aid Station

Yuta Shitara, who won a million dollars (US) breaking the Japanese marathon record in Tokyo Sunday, picked up this arm sleeve at the 40km aid station, and then blasted onwards to the finish in 2:06:11. We asked our Japan's contributor Osamu Tada about the arm sleeve. "His family gave him his portrait," says Osamu. "Maybe it is a new way of cheering...as an aside his twin brother is going to run the Biwako Marathon this weekend." The mystery behind this event certainly caught the attention of many. "I think this is great," says Bob Anderson. "Yuta is one good runner and if more people now know his name because of this event, all the better." (Tue 27) ⚡AMP
by Osamu Tada (in Japan)
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Boston Marathon bombings hero will run in 2018 race in honor of those who died or were injured

You know him as one of the heroes from the Boston Marathon bombings, and this year, Carlos Arredondo will be running the 26.2 miles for the first time. Arredondo’s heroism became a beacon of what it means to be Boston Strong in the wake of the tragic events five years ago. His quick response is credited with saving the life of Jeff Bauman, whose story was adapted into a feature film. This year, Arredondo will be running in honor of those who died and were injured on the fateful Monday in 2013. Arredondo was photographed wearing his cowboy hat and pushing Jeff Bauman in a wheelchair after losing both his legs in the blast. Arredondo helped put tourniquets on Bauman's legs before seeking medical assistance. (Tue 27) ⚡AMP
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Way Too Cool 50k is about breathtaking trails, spirited aid stations and amazing views

The Way Too Cool 50K in Cool California has become the most sought after 50K in the United States for veterans and novices alike. The breathtaking trails, spirited aid stations, amazing views and pure fun, make this an adventure you won't want to miss.... for this year Max King is the favorite in this field? He has the fastest WTC finish time, which came with his 2013 win. David Roche should challenge and, of course, Brett Hales is a fascinating entrant. Hales, a shorter-distance mountain running specialist who finished seventh at the 2016 World Mountain Running Championships, put his first ultra-distance race under his belt last summer with a 50k. Ladia Albertson-Junkans and Abby Levene have the most leg speed among this women’s field, so perhaps it’ll be a race for the win between them. But we all know Cat Bradley’s speed and strength, and Brittany Peterson just keeps getting better each time she races, so expect these two to be ‘in it’ as well. (Tue 27) ⚡AMP
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The 2020 Tokyo Olympics could be Dangerously Hot and Humid

While the Winter Olympics just came to a close in PyeongChang, the world will turn its focus to the 2020 Tokyo Summer Olympics. But some experts are concerned. Makoto Yokohari, an adviser for the Tokyo Olympics committee, conducted recent research that concluded athletes could be in danger if precautions aren't taken. While Tokyo has hosted the Olympics before, they took place in October when conditions were cooler. Average highs in the heat of the summer hover near the mid-80s F but can rise to the 90s at times. “These will be some of the worst conditions...of marathon running,” Yokohari told The Times. Yokohari and his team went through the exact men's marathon course at the same time of year at the same starting point in the summer of 2016. The course offers little to no shade, which makes it even more dangerous for the runners. But this is not the first time the Olympics have been held at locations where temperatures were not ideal. "I think it is important that Olympic Marathon Trials be held in similar conditions," says Bob Anderson. "Some runners handle heat and humidity better than others." (Tue 27) ⚡AMP
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Cathy Troisi is doing Boston Marathon for the 50th time

Auburn native Cathy Troisi will be 72 next month, and on April 16 she will "do" the Boston Marathon for her 50th time. "I never say the word 'run,' I say 'do' marathons," she said. "The marathon scene for me, is when I feel most me, or at least the me I think I was before my daughter was diagnosed and everything that happened in the next two years." Troisi's daughter, Kim Troisi-Paton, was diagnosed with colon cancer at age 35. That's when Cathy, who then lived year-round in Seneca Falls, NY packed up her belongings and moved to Cohoes outside of Albany, NY to be with her daughter and two grandchildren. In 2005, she finished her treatments. But in December 2006, her cancer came back. Kim passed away in August 2007. (Tue 27) ⚡AMP
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Pittsburgh Marathon Increases Course Time Limits for the First Time

This year’s DICK’S Sporting Goods Pittsburgh Marathon and UPMC Health Plan Pittsburgh Half Marathon courses will be identical to the 2017 routes. While the routes will look familiar, P3R is making another kind of change that will impact both returning and new runners. The full marathon course time limit will be increased from six to seven hours, and half-marathon participants will now have three and a half hours to complete the course. Runners will have to maintain a 16:00 minute per mile pace, up two minutes from the previous 14:00 minute per mile rate. (Tue 27) ⚡AMP
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Cassie Scallon is going for her weight in Wine at Napa Valley Marathon

A hamstring injury has forced Cassie Scallon to cut down on her training, but she still plans to be in the field for Sunday’s Napa Valley Marathon as one of the race’s elite women’s entrants. The injury, said Scallon, has been frustrating, as she has dealt with it now for the last two months. “I’ve been spending a lot of time in therapy and seeing doctors, so that’s frustrating,” the Santa Barbara resident said. “I’m not where I want to be...but don't count me out." It will be Scallon’s first appearance. By winning, one of the rewards is their weight in wine provided by the Andretti Winery. Cassie was the USA Track & Field’s 100K Trail national champion in 2012 and 2016. She won the title at USA Track & Field’s 50-Mile Road Championships in 2013. (Tue 27) ⚡AMP
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What happened with Wilson Kipsang on Sunday at Tokyo Marathon

Former Olympic bronze medalist Wilson Kipsang of Kenya said Sunday stomach problems forced him to stop midway through the Tokyo marathon course on Sunday. Speaking moments after he dropped out of the race with only 15km done, the former world record holder said, "I really wanted to go fast, but after suffering from stomach problems the last two days before the race, I didn't have the power to run a decent race today." In the absence of Kipsang, Kenyan Dickson Chumba was the strongest as he recaptured the title he last won in 2014, timing 2:05:30. However, the hero of the day was Yuta Shitara of Japan, who was second clocking a national record time of 2:06:11. He improved the mark after 16 years and got 1 million U.S. dollar bonus for it. (Tue 27) ⚡AMP
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Details of Japan's Project Exceed and the Million Dollar Payout

Yuta Shitara set a National Japan Marathon record yesterday at the Tokyo Marathon and walked away a millionaire...The bonus comes from Project Exceed, a program launched in 2015 by the National Corporate Federation to encourage national marathon records before the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. Here is how it works, any Japanese citizen, who broke the men's national record of 2:06:16 or the women's record of 2:19:12 on a record-legal course would receive 100 million yen, roughly $937,000 USD currently. The runner's coach or team would also receive a separate 50 million yen ($468,000 USD) bonus. Info from Brett Larner @ Japan Running News (Mon 26) ⚡AMP
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The most people ever applied to run the London Marathon

The 2018 Virgin Money London Marathon takes place on Sunday April 22. A total of 386,050 people applied for a place via the public ballot – the biggest number of applications for any marathon in the world. The iconic event, which first took place in 1981, takes runners on a journey from Blackheath to The Mall. Two of the greatest marathon fields in history will contest the elite men’s and women’s races this April, when last year’s champions Daniel Wanjiru and Mary Keitany return to defend their titles. (Mon 26) ⚡AMP
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Laura Jones could not run a mile in 2016 and now 7 marathons on 7 continents in one year

Laura Jones overcame extreme Arctic conditions to battle her way across 26.2 miles of sheet ice, snow and even a frozen river as she completed a race across Canada's relentless Yukon territory. The 29-year-old, who last year had never run further than 5k, set herself up to do the "I Can Run 7 Challenge" to complete seven marathons in seven continents within a year. After finishing the Canadian race alongside her husband Rhys, she now has her sights set on her final marathon in Kilimanjaro on Sunday, March 4, after already completing events in London, Everest, Patagonia in Chile, Rottnest Island in Australia and Seattle. (Mon 26) ⚡AMP
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Morocco’s Kaoutar Boulaid breaks course record in seville

Kenya’s Dickson Tuwei and Morocco’s Kaoutar Boulaid triumphed at the 34th Zurich Maratón de Sevilla. Running in nearly ideal weather conditions, Tuwei clocked 2:08:18 while Boulaid’s winning time of 2:25:32 broke the course record by more than half a minute. “Honestly, I didn’t expect a 2:25 clocking but a time in the 2:27-2:28 region,” said Boulaid, who is based in Spain. “I went out fast but managed to maintain the pace in the second half and beat the Ethiopians.” (Mon 26) ⚡AMP
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Three Time Napa Valley Marathon Champion Racing Again

The Kaiser Permanente Napa Valley Marathon announced today that three-time women’s champion Devon Yanko will return to the world-renowned Napa Valley and highlight a compact, but determined, elite field on Sunday, March 4, 2018. Yanko, age 35, has competed four previous times on the race’s fast point-to-point course, and emerged victorious in three of those instances (in 2007, 2012, and 2015) and placed third in 2014. Only one athlete to date has won NVM four times: Mary Coordt (Elk Grove, Calif.) who ran away with women’s victories in 1997, 2005, 2009, and 2010. (Mon 26) ⚡AMP
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Can coffee help you train longer and harder?

Caffeine is one of the most researched substances reported to help athletes perform better and train longer and harder. As a result, sportspeople often take it as a performance-enhancing “ergogenic” aid. Studies have also shown that coffee can be used as an alternative to caffeine to improve running performance. Similarly, drinking energy drinks containing caffeine before exercise can improve mental focus, alertness, anaerobic and endurance performance. But drinking coffee isn’t like taking a measured dose of caffeine. The amount of stimulant in a cup will depend on the blend of coffee and how it is brewed. It is commonly held belief that caffeine is a diuretic that will lead to dehydration. But a number of studies have shown that this isn’t the case with moderate amounts of coffee, which help keep you hydrated like any other drink. (Mon 26) ⚡AMP
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Months of work, time, sacrifice and determination paid off for Amy in Tokyo

Amy Cragg finished third at the Tokyo Marathon in 2:21:42. That is a PR of over five minutes and good for number five on the U.S. all-time list and the sixth fastest time in Tokyo. Amy posted this right before the start on FB: “Months of work, time, sacrifice and determination...here we go!!! She did it. At the press conference Friday she said, “she hoped to run 2:22:59 with the caveat that while she'd like to run a fast time her priority would be placing in the top three.” Amy made good on that promise. Shalane Flanagan posted this before the start, “When (Amy) is about to race I feel like I am too!!! My heart rate is already through the roof and butterflies in my stomach....still have 5hours until gun goes off.” There were a lot of people cheering for Amy thousands of miles away. (Sun 25) ⚡AMP
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What did Yuta Shitara strap to his arm at the last aid station at the Tokyo Marathon?

Yuta Shitara ran the fastest marathon of any Japanese runner ever at the 2018 Tokyo Marathon on Sunday. He posted 2:06:11. At the last aid station he pulled something from his bottle set-up and put it around his right arm bicep. One person on Let's Run suggested it was a "a giant nicotine patch." Another said it was a "Hello Kitty Coin Purse." Michael Capper on FB said "Never seen this before." Gary Rush stated, "Maybe a gel fluid holder? I think its against IAAF rules for elites to wear or use communication devices or receive electronic updates during a race." Bob Anderson says, "After looking at more than ten photos of Yuta finishing races, I did not see a similar 'thing' strapped to his arm." In any case he blasted the last few kilometers wearing this 'thing'. Did it give him an unfair advantage? "First of all we need to know what it was," says Bob. (Sun 25) ⚡AMP
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Sara Hall sets course record at Gasparilla half as she gets ready for Boston

Stephanie Bruce returned Sunday to defend her title at the Publix Gasparilla Distance Classic half-marathon. She ran a blistering pace, shaving 50 seconds off her time from last year to finish well under the course record. Still, it was not enough to maintain the record or her title. Running by her side throughout the race was Sara Hall, a veteran distance runner. Hall surged ahead in the last 200 meters to win in one hour, 12 minutes, finishing one second ahead of Bruce. Hall used the Gasparilla half-marathon as a tuneup for the Boston Marathon on April 16. She has run in a series of races, from half-marathons to marathons, all while logging 120 miles a week. The volume of miles is part of the preparation, mentally and physically. "Part of the marathon buildup is you're running on tired legs," Hall said. "You have to always convince yourself there's more there. In a marathon, the first half tires you out and then you have to tell yourself there's another gear there." (Sun 25) ⚡AMP
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The Malta Marathon is the biggest athletic event on the Island

The Malta Marathon is the biggest athletic event on the island and now in its 33rd edition, saw thousands of athletes compete. A total of 3,700 people registered for the races with 960 for the marathon. Malta is located in the center of the Mediterranean Sea and is the southernmost European country. Malta is halfway between Gibraltar and Alexandria and between Sicily and North Africa... Six-time Malta Marathon winner Mohammed Hajjy had to settle for second place in the 2018 edition on Sunday morning, being narrowly beaten to the finish line by Moroccan compatriot Said El-Baazouzi. in 2:18:31, with Hajjy making it in 2:18:58. Polish runner Anna Wasik was the first female with 2:53:47. (Sun 25) ⚡AMP
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Yuta Shitara sets Japanese National Maraton Record and wins $936,000 bonus

Seventh at 35 kilometres, Yuta Shitara roared back to second soon after 40k to finish second in 2:06:11, breaking Toshinari Takaoka’s Japanese national record of 2:06:16 set in 2002. Shitara’s accomplishment was significant, with the applause as he crossed the finish line heard far and wide. Shitara, 26, is now the first Japanese man to simultaneously hold the national records in both the marathon and half marathon. Yuta earned a 100 million Yen bonus (936,000us) for setting the record. This bonus was established a couple of years ago to encourage Japanese’s runners be prepared for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. With six runners from Japan running faster than 2:09, the program is working. (Sun 25) ⚡AMP
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Dickson Chumba wins the Tokyo Marathon again...six Japanese Runners under 2:09

Kenya’s Dickson Chumba (the 2014 Tokyo and 2015 Chicago champion) opened a nice gap as they approach 38km and went on to win in 2:05:29. At 40k Japan’s Yuta Shitara takes another swig from his festive bottle and grits his teeth as he hunts down and passes Amos Kipruto. This is a man on a mission! Yuta Shitara did not let up and accomplished the following: 1. Ran a Japanese marathon record of 2:06:11 2. Finished 2nd in the Tokyo Marathon (highest finish ever by a Japanese man at a World Marathon Major) 3. Won 100 million yen for setting the NR. That's $936,000US...Wilson Kipsang dropped out at 15k...Amy Cragg finished third in the women’s race taking five minutes off her PR. (2:21:42). Ethiopian’s Birhane Dibaba won the female race in 2:19:51...This year’s race was the biggest field ever with 35,500 starters. (Sat 24) ⚡AMP
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Adidas looks to break the 2-hour marathon barrier with the Adizero Sub2

When you’re running 26.2 miles, every last ounce of weight you’re carrying counts. And now, Adidas is finding ways to reduce that load. The athletic company believes that the secret to breaking the two hour barrier when it comes to the marathon is in a shoe. Specifically, the Adizero Sub2. Designed in conjunction with some of the most talented distance runners in the world, this sneaker boasts Adidas’ new Boost Lite midsole. Most importantly, however, the Adizero Sub2 is said to be the “most advanced, fast and lightweight running shoe ever created by Adidas.” A key collaborator in Adidas’ quest to empower the sub-two-hour marathon race has been Wilson Kipsang. The Kenyan athlete won the bronze medal at the 2012 Summer Olympics, and ran the fastest race held in Japan at last year’s Tokyo Marathon with a time of 2:03:58. (Sat 24) ⚡AMP
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Her running partner was out on a routine run when she was hit by a car. Cara made a promise to her...

Cara Koprowski of Longwood holds the shirt she plans to wear when she runs the Disney Princess Half Marathon on Sunday in honor of her late friend, It was last St. Patrick’s Day, and Cara Koprowski of Longwood was preparing breakfast for her family. She did not learn the awful truth until hours after that initial transmission.“Your friend, Amy, was hit by a car this morning while running. Before she died, Higgins, 50, made Koprowski promise that she would run the Disney Princess Half Marathon. Koprowski will fulfill that pledge early Sunday morning in the 13.1-mile race that will begin and end at Epcot. “I’ve never felt that broken,’’ said Koprowski, a fourth-grade teacher at Wekiva Elementary School. Koprowski, 43, met Higgins after her family moved to Silverdale, Wash., near Seattle, after the Navy transferred her husband there. Higgins was a second-grade teacher when Koprowski got a job at the same school. (Sat 24) ⚡AMP
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Al Gordon lived to be 107 and started running marathons in his 80’s

After a week in New York that featured a snowstorm followed by temperatures nearing 80 degrees, runners in the NYRR Al Gordon Brooklyn 4M enjoyed a comparatively calm and pleasant 50-degree morning. The event is named for a longtime NYRR board member who began running marathons in his 80s, and who embodied NYRR's "Run for Life" motto as he lived to age 107. As NYRR celebrates its own 60th anniversary in 2018, this year's race marked the 28th running of an NYRR event in Gordon's honor. The race up front led to two new event records, as Harbert Okuti crossed the finish in 19:25 and Roberta Groner 22:04. Besides being a runner Al Gordon (1901 - 2009) was an American businessman who transformed the Wall Street firm of Kidder Peabody. He bought the firm in 1931 and remained its chairman until selling it to General Electric in 1986. He continued working even as he reached 100. (Sat 24) ⚡AMP
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Runners of all ages and mileage will enjoy Scott Ludwig’s Running Out of Gas

It's inevitable that all runners who have been pounding the pavement for a very long time will eventually slow down. Having run every day since November 30, 1978, Scott Ludwig certainly falls into this category. Considering that he can no longer run a single mile in the pace he ran 26 of them when he set his first marathon best many years ago, Ludwig finds he is ready to accept the reality of slowing down with age. Now that he has entered the ranks of the "grizzled veterans," he is ready to offer runners all the wisdom and insight he gained from his many years--and miles--on the roads and trails. A "do as I say, not as I do" runner, Ludwig has compiled his advice for runners who find they may not run quite as fast as they used to in Running Out of Gas, a humorous take on aging gracefully. Scott will be sharing his wisdom in this column. (Sat 24) ⚡AMP
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Harry Jones made a do or die move in epic three-way battle for 9 Dragons ultra

British runner wins 80km ultra by two minutes after lead changes hands over and over in a race that could have been anyones. Harry Jones was left with no choice but to make a mad move early to secure first place on the 9 Dragons 50-mile ultra marathon. British runner Jones had been battling with Chinese runner Deng Goumin and Hong Kong-based Austrian Michael Skobierski since the race started at midnight on Friday night. A kilometre out from the final check point he broke from the other runners – a risky move with 6km still to run. “It could have been any of us that won. It was a matter of grit and determination but I was lucky I made the move when I did.” Harry finished in 10 hours 41 minutes, ahead of Deng in 10:43 and Skobierski in 10:50 (Sat 24) ⚡AMP
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Billy Mills’ dad told him, someday, son you’ll have wings of an Eagle

DID YOU KNOW: Australia’s world record holder Ron Clarke was the favorite in the 10000m at the 1964 Tokyo Olympics. America’s Billy Mills (26), remembers, “I was diagnosed as hypoglycaemic: low blood sugar. I didn’t know if I could finish...But I just tried to stay with the leaders, lap after lap after lap.” Then came the moment that inspired Mills. Spotting the eagle embroidered on the shirt of a German runner, he cast his mind back to his childhood and kicked for home. “The wings of an eagle!” Billy says. “Back to my dad...‘Son, someday you’ll have wings of an eagle’. I may never be this close again. I’ve got to do it now...Then I felt the tape break across my chest. A Japanese man asked ‘Who are you?’ And I thought I’d miscounted the laps: ‘Finished’ You are the new Olympic champion’.” In a breathtaking final lap watched by a crowd of 85,000 and millions of TV viewers around the world, Mills stunned everyone, bursting into the lead and breaking the tape in a new Olympic record time of 28:24.4, 50 seconds faster than his previous PR. (Fri 23) ⚡AMP
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Some bold predictions at the Tokyo Marathon press conference Friday

After stepping up to the big leagues last year with course records in the 2:03 and 2:19 range, the Tokyo Marathon hopes to go one better this year. Men's course record setter Wilson Kipsang (Kenya) is back, stepping up from a 2:03:50 prediction for Tokyo in January to a 2:02:50 world record prediction at Friday's pre-race press conference. The top-ranked woman is Ruti Aga (Ethiopia), coming in hot off a 1:06:39 win last month in Houston and turning heads at the press conference with a boldly mumbled 2:18:00 prediction. Alongside Aga's brash 2:18:00 prediction, Amy Cragg (USA) said she hoped to run 2:22:59 with the caveat that while she'd like to run a fast time her priority would be placing in the top three. (Fri 23) ⚡AMP
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Runners will share in the $112,000 in prize money at the Okpekpe 10K Road Race

Athletes coming to compete at the sixth edition of the annual Okpekpe Road Race will have more cause to celebrate as the organisers have increased the prize money for the 10km Road Race. The race scheduled to take place in Okpekpe near Auchi, Edo State on May 12, will see athletes share $112,000 as prize money, $22,000 more than the $90,000 on offer during the last edition, according to the organisers. In the new outlay, the winner in each gender category will be going home with $20,000 while $13,000 and $9,000 respectively will go to the second and third placed finishers. Spokesman for the race Dare Esan says the increase in the prize money is inevitable because of the elevated status of the race. (Fri 23) ⚡AMP
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Ethiopians Assefa and Debebe lead the elite field at the Zurich Marathon

Ethiopians Fikre Assefa and Zinash Debebe will be among the favourites at the Zurich Marathon de Sevilla. The race, which boasts one of the flattest courses worldwide, will also serve as the Spanish championships for the distance which has attracted the local crème.Assefa seems to be the field’s most in-form runner as he finished last year on a high by setting a career best of 2:08:36 in Kosice for second, his first ever sub-2:10 clocking.The women’s event features a fine Ethiopian contingent including Zinash Debebe, who set her career best of 2:30:38 in Beirut last November. (Fri 23) ⚡AMP
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Maybe the most beautiful marathon course in the world?

The Sparkasse 3-Lander Marathon is unique in that runners will pass through three different countries. The marathon starts from the beautiful Island of Lindau-habour, then passes through the Austrian towns Lochau, Bregenz, Hard, Höchst, it then crosses the Swiss border at St. Margreten and continues across the Rheindamm back to Hard and finally finishes in Bregenz. 60% of the course takes place along Lake Constance. This Oct 7th race is for sure a bucket list type of event. (Fri 23) ⚡AMP
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California International Marathon Earns Gold Level Certification

The 2017 CIM produced by the Sacramento Running Association has officially earned gold level certification from the Council for Responsible Sport, an Oregon-based nonprofit that provides objective, independent verification of the socially and environmentally responsible work that sports event organizers do to make a difference in their communities.“I am so proud of the hard work of our staff, Board, and volunteers to comprehensively integrate sustainability into our race planning and operations processes at CIM,” said Race Director Eli Asch. “We strive to be a leader in our events’ positive impact on our community, and this recognition by the Council as a gold-level sustainable event is a testament to those efforts. (Fri 23) ⚡AMP
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Ovarian cancer survivor Going to run the Toughest Foot Race on the Planet

Heather Hawkins will run in the 2018 Marathon Des Sables – known as the world’s toughest foot race – to raise money and awareness for Ovarian Cancer Australia. The gruelling physical and mental 10-day test across 250 kilometres of the Sahara begins on April 8. Even getting to the start will be quite the journey for a woman who was diagnosed with ovarian cancer 11 years ago. “I had surgery within 10 days,” she says. “The gynaecological surgeon … removed an 18-centimetre tumour and I had a full hysterectomy.” Afterwards, Ms Hawkins chose a non-invasive surveillance program over chemotherapy. She also embarked on a fitness regime, she signed up the four-kilometre Mother’s Day Classic. And more events, each longer than the last, and now she is going to run 250k. (Fri 23) ⚡AMP
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America’s Amy Cragg wants to PR at the Tokyo Marathon on Sunday

Most of the talk about the Tokyo Marathon has been focused on the men’s race. Tad Hayano, the Tokyo Marathon Race Director says, “In women’s race, the 2015 world marathon silver medallist Hellah Kiprop and Purity Rionoripo, who clocked her personal best of 2:20:55 to win Paris Marathon last year, are the only Kenyans in the race. They will face Ethiopia’s two-time Olympic 5,000m champion Meseret Defar, who is making her marathon debut after being out of action for two years. The other Ethiopians in the line-up include Shure Demise, Ruti Aga and Birhane Dibaba, who makes her fifth consecutive appearance in Tokyo Marathon.” World marathon bronze medallist Amy Cragg (USA) has said her main goal at the Tokyo Marathon is to improve her 2:27:03 PR. (Thu 22) ⚡AMP
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What is the Best Diet for a Marathon

Easy - eat the same stuff you normally do. Now is not the time to start experimenting with new foods that might mess with your stomach. If you're looking for general nutritional advice, I feel like you can't go wrong with a mostly vegetarian diet, focusing on whole foods. Get a decent amount of protein from lean meats/fish, healthy fats from nuts/avocados/peanut butter, carbs from stuff like potatoes or whole-grain pasta. In the 2-3 days before the marathon, if you want to carb load, do so but do it smartly. Carb loading is not eating three times servings of pasta at each meal - it's replacing your normal protein/fat intake with carbs instead, but you should still be eating roughly the same caloric amount. Overeating right before a marathon is a recipe for disaster. You should also be carb loading 2-3 days in advance - the dinner before the race will be too late for your body to properly store and make use of the excess glycogen. If you haven't started yet, start experimenting with GUs/energy intake during your long runs and find what works so you don't risk an upset stomach on race day. (From Hooch Pandersnatch) (Thu 22) ⚡AMP
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New Zealand's first Ultra staged Run starts on Sunday

The Alps 2 Ocean Ultra (New Zealand's first ultra-staged race) will see 130 runners from 15 countries on the start line looking towards a finish in Oamaru seven days later after covering 316-kilometres following the off road Alps 2 Ocean cycle trail for much of the journey. Race director Mike Sandri says, "This run will not be easy and you will be pushed to your limit. You will get tired, sore, hungry and may even get the odd blister - all those things that go with ultra-stage running. But at the same time, I guarantee when you get back home and have recovered, you will have loved it and most importantly have met some amazing people." (Thu 22) ⚡AMP
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